The University discovered and removed asbestos from the flooring and pipe and plumbing fixtures of first-year dormitories Reitman, Cable and Shapiro A and B during the renovations that took place over the summer, according to Executive Director of Integrated Media William Schaller in an email to the Justice. 

Schaller wrote that the University had expected to find asbestos during the renovations given the age of the buildings in North and Massell Quads which were built in 1959 and 1952, respectively, and did in fact discover it during a pre-construction survey. 

The University then hired two licensed asbestos removal companies to ensure its safe  and complete elimination from the buildings and to keep the renovation projects on schedule, Schaller wrote. 

According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency website, it is very unlikely that any students could have been exposed to or affected by the asbestos in the dormitories because, “in general, exposure may occur only when the asbestos-containing material is disturbed or damaged in some way to release particles and fibers into the air.” 

Schaller wrote that, though the EPA recommends leaving old asbestos-containing material alone if it is in good condition, the process of renovation could have released the asbestos, which would create the need to eliminate it. 

—Hannah Wulkan