A Massachusetts high school is finding that a remodeling project is going to cost a lot more than expected. The project has already exceeded $190 million, with a significant portion of that cost stemming from asbestos abatement.
Newton North High School, located just outside of Boston, is known for being the expensive high school ever built in Massachusetts. The school system spent nearly $14 million for the buildingâ€™s demolition because of costs involving asbestos removal.
Newton officials discovered the asbestos problem in 2010. The original budget to demolish the school was $7.2 million but the costs nearly doubled once asbestos was found in the buildingâ€™s exterior walls.
Careful work had to be done to ensure that no asbestos fibers were released into the air. Once asbestos fibers become airborne, they can be breathed in by victims, leading to several diseases like mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma is a cancer of the lungs, heart and chest cavities. It is extremely difficult ot both diagnose and treat because it can take up to 50 years to manifest. Although if caught early, treatments like chemotherapy, radiation and surgery might help prolong a victimâ€™s life, there is currently no cure for mesothelioma.
Workers have to be especially careful when removing asbestos from the school out of risk of exposing oung students. At least Newton officials can rest assured the proper abatement procedures were followed, even if it cost a lot of money.
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