University officials confirmed Tuesday that there were no traces of asbestos in the Phyllis P. Marshall Center. Joe Halle, senior environmental health and safety specialist for USF, said surveys from materials that needed to be taken from the first floor of the student union came back negative.
Construction of an Einstein Bros Bagels began Monday. However, it had to be postponed because an asbestos test was not requested as it should have been, Halle said.
Since the renovation to the Marshall Center includes several project managers, there was some confusion among administrators as to who was responsible for arranging for the test, Halle said.
“This is a multitask project. … Aramark is trying to get this off the ground for the students, so there were a few chiefs and no Indians,” Halle said. “The bottom line is it wasn’t done, and we in (environmental health and safety) found out it hadn’t been completed.”
Halle, who is also the asbestos coordinator for USF, said as soon as he discovered the Marshall Center wasn’t tested, he sent the consultant Professional Service Industries to the building to retrieve materials to sample.
The consultant tested dry wall, floor tile and ceiling tiles, Halle, said and determined that construction could resume at about noon Tuesday.
Before the Kopp Engineering building was remodeled, Halle said abatement teams had to clear all materials of asbestos. Once a building is cleared of asbestos or shows no signs of asbestos during testing, the tests should not have to be done again until further construction is scheduled.
If asbestos is found in any building, contractor Lang Environmental would be responsible for asbestos abatement.