Asbestos delays demolition of University of Iowa auditoriumThe discovery of asbestos in the 30-year-old Hancher Auditorium at the University of Iowa will reportedly delay the demolition process, which is scheduled to begin sometime in the fall, according to the Iowa City Press-Citizen.
The 135,000-square foot building, which opened in 1972, has been closed since being damaged by a flood in 2008, the news source reported. Tom Moore, a spokesman for the University of Iowa, said in an email that the removal of asbestos is relatively routine.
"Asbestos is embedded within many materials in most buildings, and environmental rules require that it be extracted prior to full demolition," Moore explained. "It’s a very standard part of the process and our team has taken the asbestos removal into account in their plans."
Though perhaps a routine part of the demolition process, asbestos removal is critical as exposure to the carcinogenic substance can cause lung cancer, asbestosis and malignant mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer.
According to the news provider, the auditorium will be rebuilt at a nearby site, with the opening preliminarily scheduled for December of 2015.
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