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Construction Week 11, Monday 7/31 October 31, 2006

Posted by jeanne in construction news, Urban Development.

ednesday 6/7 They’re digging up the intersection out front. They’re putting up forms out back. The bulldozer is doing something at the back of the property, and along the cyde-bissey street side they’re digging trenches with smaller ditches beneath them.

Out front they break for lunch leaving the machines blocking both ahr and cyde streets. Then a truck drives up, empty but reinforced sides. Then the company truck pulls up and 4 white guys get out having gone to daddy d’s , then the mexicans cruise down from the mexican house at the end of cyde street. The guy’s there to cut the tram lines that are under cyde street from the old days around the turn of the last century, when cyde street was the main drag thru the park instead of a dead-end side street, cut off by i-20 back when it was a slum in the 50s and 60s.

After the 1917 fire white atlanta decided to build up druid hills road and extend the suburbs, and the old city was allowed to lapse into decrepitude. Old white families stayed on in their houses, blacks moved in, and Mexicans, most of them renters; houses were subdivided into tenements and boarding houses. Anybody with money lived in buckhead or sandy springs.

Husband and thing two moved the heavy tracks to the front of the driveway. He wanted to have a piece of local history in the yard. We’ll use them as water barriers down the back. Half buried. We can perhaps use blocks from the street as barriers as well.

Out back there’s the sound of sawing through metal. Hammering the forms together. Beep beep beep. There’s three pickups parked in the shade of the ramp, with the bulldozer scraping along the back (toward the building) section, the high-pitched electronic chirp of the survey equipment maintaining contact with the gps satellite.

Out back a mexican worker cuts rebar. He leans over away from me, using a big boxy saw that emits showers of sparks into the silt fence, into the yard. Cutting through 2 pieces at a time then stacking them with the other 6′ lengths, then loading them on his shoulders and carting them off to the other end where they’re laying rebar. Got to walk all the way around to get to the vault. Part of the long alley side of the cut collapsed after the rain, covering the slab they first laid. I was fantacizing an accident. A pickup came down the ramp while he was between cuts and the guy picked up his saw and moved out of the way while he rolled over it. But he’d stuck it in the middle. But what if the truck had jostled it, and what if he’d neglected to weigh the rods down like he should and what if he’d just been standing there at the worktable holding his safety goggles and put them back down, and what if his cut went wrong, and what if the saw shattered and ripped him to pieces or the sparks set off a fire that burned the back yards and threatened the houses.



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