Thursday, January 6, 2011

Salvage some fairness

Posted on Thu, Jan 6, 2011 at 4:00 AM

I was interested to see that the demolition of the former St. Francis Xavier Grade School building made your photos of the year (see “2010: The Year in Photos,” Dec. 30, 2010). Thank you for pointing out how much board feet of lumber were recycled from that project. We made a conscious effort to recycle as much as possible.

But I am tired of the Independent continuing to spread misinformation about how much more could have been recycled. Neither our contractor nor the parish was consulted about this issue. So let me shed some light.

Fact: We recycled much more than the 35,000 board feet of lumber. Radiators, copper wiring, tubing, windows, etc. were also taken from the building and reused.

Fact: We offered our contracted recycler more board feet, but, because of safety issues, he said he would not let his crew work on that part of the building.

Fact: Because the gymnasium part of the building was in danger of pancaking out into Spruce Street, our contractor had to remove the center section of the building—where some beams and flooring would have been available for recycling—because of safety for his own crew.

Fact: We offered all the bricks to the same recycler, but he didn’t want them. So we hauled them to Home Resource, at our own cost.

Fact: When the financial offices building on the corner of Front and Pattee was demolished, not a mention of recycling appeared in the Independent that I recall. It was the old Florence Laundry building, a piece of Missoula history, designed by famed Missoula architect A.J. Gibson. Not a scrap of anything was recycled in that demolition.

Just a plea for equal and unbiased treatment of two similar situations. I still do not understand why St. Francis Xavier Parish continues to be singled out when all we have done is beautify the corner of Spruce and Orange streets and create a small green space to enhance the downtown area.

Fr. Rich Perry, S.J.


St. Francis Xavier Parish


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