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Lennar pile-on

Submitted by Reporter on Tue, 10/02/2007 - 10:00pm

Claiming that a rash of health problems in the Bayview is related to dust from Lennar Corp.'s Parcel A construction site at the Hunters Point Shipyard, a busload of Bayview–Hunters Point 49ers fans rode to the team's headquarters in Santa Clara on Sept. 26 to ask the team not to build a new stadium with the Miami developer.

Jaron Browne of People Organized to Win Employment Rights said the Yorks, the family that owns the team, "weren't able to come out and give a statement," but the fans were able to deliver an informational packet that included medical records from the community.

"Our message was 'Lennar is not a builder in good faith,' " Browne said.

POWER wasn't the only group slamming the developer last week. On Sept. 25 the San Francisco Board of Education voted unanimously to ask the city to require an immediate halt of Lennar's Parcel A development until an independent health and safety assessment is conducted.

And on Sept. 20 the California Department of Public Health revealed that Lennar improperly used indoor monitors at Parcel A, sampling methods that made it impossible to interpret the recorded dust concentrations, even after a subcontractor finally replaced batteries that had been dead for months (see "The Corporation That Ate San Francisco," 3/14/07).

"It is recommended that the developer engage someone with expertise in dust control," the CDPH stated in its Sept. 20 report, which confirmed that levels of asbestos exceed mandated thresholds at the site's fence line and in the surrounding community, and that these exposures resulted in "some increased risk for BVHP residents. "

But "due to the novel application of the equipment for fence line monitoring, CDPH is not able to interpret whether dust exposures in the community occurred that would explain some of the community health complaints such as headaches, bloody noses, adult onset asthma, respiratory symptoms, nausea, and vomiting," the report said.

The CDPH report also said that "medical follow-up or screening is not recommended because there are no valid tests to identify current exposures or predict developing future disease," something Lennar has used to support its position that no further action is needed. Lennar put out a statement saying the report "supports recent findings by state and local public health professionals that grading operations at a construction site pose no significant long-term health threats to residents in San Francisco's Bayview–Hunters Point neighborhood."

Mayor Gavin Newsom and the Board of Supervisors have both resisted community calls to stop work at the site or otherwise restrict Lennar's local activities.