An adaptive reuse project in the Bronx has become New York’s most notorious construction site news



Aerial view of the 20 Bruckner Boulevard site. Image courtesy of Google Maps.

This site, which is converting an old building into a charter school, has just differentiated itself from 40,000 other major construction projects in New York City by suffering its third worker death in less than three years.

No other construction site in New York City has recorded as many single fatal incidents since at least 2003, when the Department of Building began keeping electronic records. But despite the pattern of deaths, the consequences were negligible. — The New York Times

In full view of the Major Deegan Expressway, 20 Bruckner Boulevard, known throughout the New York area as the site of the legendary former History Channel (and later iHeartRadio) billboard.was once the ice warehouse of a former Yankees owner and is now converted to a charter school by developer Maddd Equities, which has been fined nearly $28,000 in recent years despite record-high deaths.

Being a construction worker is one of the deadliest occupations in New York City, with injury and death rates rising before the pandemic before falling slightly due to the economic slowdown. Most men in profile Times are non-union migrant workers who start out working for $120 a day, with some being recruited from homeless shelters to fill the need. An OSHA investigation found some deaths had been improperly reported for weeks.

Previously on Archinect: Nearly one in four workplace deaths in New York occurs in the construction industry

Several walkouts have been enacted and then lifted, part of the nearly 1,500 the New York City Department of Construction enacted over the past year in its quest for a new “zero tolerance” policy. One report indicates that nearly 80% of worker deaths during that period occurred in non-union workplaces, which former OSHA official Jordan Barab says is the result of a mix of differential employment pressures and abuse.

“You have a perfect storm of unsafe conditions,” the former deputy deputy labor secretary said Times. “Not just the physical conditions, but conditions where workers are unaware of their rights or unable to exercise their rights.”


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