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Mold forces changes in construction
of new municipal building
by Thomas Fraser
of The Daily Times Staff, Maryville, Tennessee
It seems mold can be a problem even before a building is complete.
The new $20 million municipal building being built on Broadway for the
city of Maryville is in for an unexpected makeover after mold problems
surfaced in external sheathing made by Georgia Pacific.
Georgia Pacific alerted the city and area contractors weeks ago that the
Densglass Gold exterior sheathing material was prone to molding when exposed
to moisture or high temperatures. Sure enough, mold is growing on some of
the sheathing already installed in the building, and city officials want it
pulled and replaced.
``Based on all the information collected from a variety of consultants,
we have no other choice than to totally remove the defective product from
the building,'' said Greg McClain, an assistant city manager and director of
the Maryville Public Building Authority.
Eighty-five percent of the affected sheathing has been removed, but now
the real work begins: The project's general contractor must remove most of
the bricks from the building's clock tower to trim the moldy sheathing parts
from the building.
``The last 15 percent is more problematic,'' said Merit Construction
Senior Vice President Steve Heatherly, due to the masonry. The brickwork on
the 40-foot tower will have to be dismantled to remove the moldy material.
New bricks will then have to be installed, he said.
``The vast majority of sheathing is fine,'' he said. Heatherly said he is
uncertain whether the mold remediation will affect the timeline for
construction of the building, now set for completion in April.
``We are in the process of determining the extent of the sheathing to be
removed,'' Heatherly said. Only the edges of the 4-foot by 8-foot sheathing
sections have to be removed, he said. That's where strips of paper were
attached by glue that ``had organic material in it,'' and led to mold.
The cost of the project is not yet known, but will be paid by
Georgia-Pacific. There will be no charge to the city.
``We're negotiating with them right now,'' Heatherly said.
``It sounds, to you and I, dramatic,'' McClain said, but this kind of
``There will be a cost associated with it, but the city's not going to
bear it,'' McClain said.
great material. About 80 percent of the markets out there use the material.
This just happens to be a bad batch,'' McClain said.
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