To the Editor,
In the recent article regarding the demolition of the historic Tennent, Roberts, and Whiteley gymnasium buildings [“Neighbors of Seminary Raise Concerns about Demolition of Buildings,” June 1, page 1], a Princeton Theological Seminary representative stated that the demolition has been “thoughtfully planned and will be carefully executed to minimize disruption to the neighborhood.” Unfortunately, the town has been unresponsive to requests to meet with neighbors to discuss exactly what precautions may be in place to deal with asbestos and other airborne contaminates, removal of debris, contaminated soil, truck traffic, and storm water management.
This is in stark contrast to the way in which other significant demolitions have been managed. When AvalonBay planned to demolish the old hospital, they met multiple times with neighbors, and the town provided additional services, such as air quality monitors, to reassure neighbors that the demolition would be conducted to the highest standards. Princeton University also met multiple times in public with neighbors to discuss the demolition of the Butler tract. It is disappointing that the Mercer Hill/Frog Hollow neighbors are being treated differently, but perhaps it is due to confusion around who actually owns the properties now – Herring Properties or the Seminary. more