Fallen bricks spark office building evacuation

An aging office building in downtown Yonkers was forced to evacuate on Monday after bricks fell from a wall.

Police evacuated the 10-story building, located at 70 Ashburton Ave., and shut down part of the avenue as a precaution. Emergency crews feared the building would collapse because of a heavy air-conditioning unit on the rooftop.

?If [the roof] were to let go I was worried about the load of the air conditioner collapsing the roof and causing a collapse of the building,? said Yonkers Fire Department Asst. Chief John Darcy.

Engineers from the city and the building owner reviewed plans and decided the wall would be taken down Monday night.

Locals said there have been problems with the building since the 1970s, when the building shifted and cables had to be used to pull it back up. One building tenant, Barbara Cleary, said she?s been complaining since August.

A city spokesman said there are no outstanding building violations, attributing the damages to rainwater over the years.

According to city inspectors, the problem is confined to just the one side of the building. The road will remain closed until the bricks are removed.

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