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City readies to demolish Morton Street eyesore

Posted by Patrick Rosso  February 6, 2013 02:17 PM

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(Patrick D. Rosso/

The blighted structure that stands at 872 Morton St. in Mattapan, next to the Morton Street MBTA Station, will soon be a thing of the past.

Currently the site, along with the deteriorating building, is home to trash, liquor bottles, and other refuse; a constant headache for the neighborhood.

The city is preparing to demolish the building, a former police station closed in 1981, to allow the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to use the site for the Morton Street bridge replacement project. The bridge project has been estimated to cost close to $9.7-million, which includes the cost of demolition.

A contractor will demolish the structure and once it is down the DOT will begin its work constructing a new bridge at the cleared parcel. Once the replacement bridge has been completed, the DOT will demolish the current overpass and slide in the new one.

The JR Vinagro Corporation, a Rhode Island based company, has been selected as the contractor for the demolition work, according to Robert Melvin, a project manager for the city’s property and construction management department, capital construction division.

Abatement work to clear out asbestos and other hazards is expected to begin in March and should go unnoticed by the community because the majority of the work will be inside of the building, said Melvin.

Rodent control will be in place as crews work on the structure and Melvin said most of the work shouldn’t disturb nearby commuters or residents.

“[The work] is going to stick to the site,” said Melvin. “We’ll close off the site, but we don’t anticipate any street closures.”

Once the abatement work has been completed, crews will begin tearing down the structure, which Melvin said will most likely not impact residents.

“There’ll be no explosives, no big cranes,” said Melvin. “They’ll be out there with an excavator taking it down piece by piece.”

Abatement work is expected to take between one and two months, with the building expected to be completely down by August, if not earlier.

Anticipated work times for the demolition are Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Once the building is down the state will begin work on the bridge, which is part of the Commonwealth's Accelerated Bridge Program. It was estimated in 2012 that the replacement could be completed by the summer of 2014.

Once work has been completed and the site has been cleared the city will begin the conversation with the community about the future of the 16,238-square-foot lot.

“The parcel will revert to Department of Neighborhood Development management and begin the community process to explore new scenarios and potential development ideas,” said Joe Mulligan, deputy director of capital construction for the city.

The site is located next to the Morton Street MBTA Station, which is serviced by the Fairmount Commuter Line. It is also located across Morton Street from a number of large parcels owned by Economy Plumbing. recently got the chance to venture inside the structure. To view the photos, click here.

Email Patrick D. Rosso, Follow him @PDRosso, or friend him on Facebook.

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