By Dane Placko, FOX 32 News Investigative Reporter
It was an underground surprise they hadn’t bargained for.
A southwest suburban contractor is suing the city claiming it hid dangerous asbestos buried under a construction site.
The site is now a police station on the near South Side at 14th and Blue Island.
The 12th District Chicago police station has been open for two years. However, the battle over what was discovered underground will rage on.
Fox 32: you call this an act of fraud?
“I did. And we do. We believe they fraudulently induced Harbour contractors to enter into the contract,” said attorney Charles Lewis.
Lewis represents Harbour contractors of southwest suburban Plainfield, which has filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against the Public Building Commission of Chicago. That agency, which is headed by the mayor and made up of political appointees, is in charge of building and financing new construction for the city of Chicago and Cook County.
In 2010 the Public Building Commission, or “PBC,” awarded Harbour a 20-million dollar contract to build the new police station at 14th and Blue Island, on the site of the old ABLA public housing project.
The PBC said that the site had been inspected by an environmental company and nothing dangerous was found. But soon after construction began, a subcontractor employed by Harbour discovered underground heating pipes wrapped in cancer-causing asbestos running throughout the property. Read More