My friend Lonn called me to come to his shop yesterday to see what he found while he was removing his fixtures from the shop he rented on the corner of 16th Avenue and 3rd Street SE after his landlord evicted for being robbed.
What I saw lurking behind the brand new cabinets was black mold. Black mold is growing out of the baseboards and up the wall. On another wall I could see the newest generation of mold seeping through the drywall. There are two tenants in this facility and once I did the report for Lonn I received a message from Phil, the other occupant, who invited me to further investigate the other side of the shop and the basement.
Phil tells me that there is some crystallized mold growing in basement of this building that he and Lonn rent and I am wondering if I shouldn’t get a breathing apparatus to at least make myself feel safer. I don’t feel safe breathing any of the air in this city. I know what lurks behind some of the boarded up houses and it isn’t a pretty sight or smell! These houses at this point are not able to be saved but seem as if they are being saved for last on the city’s demolition list. Nothing about the way demolitions are taking place in this city is practical or healthy. This city clearly doesn’t care about our air quality when hundreds of houses and buildings sit untouched since the 2008 floods!
I am recovering from a headache today. I am not certain if it is due to black mold exposure or the overwhelming number of houses and businesses that are growing as I type. I notice other places all the time-places I can’t believe have been left to sit! Sometimes I have trouble sleeping at night knowing it’s growing and while buildings people worked hard to clean out fall!
I did a video of the place next door to Lonn’s shop at 1411 3rd Street SE and though that is it’s address is listed as 1409 3rd Street SE on the GIS site. http://www.cedar-rapids.info/assessor/pmc/ This building is crumbling from the bottom up and ceilings are falling in on the inside. Looking through the window you can see the debris tossed all over the place. Black mold’s breeding grounds. It is clearly a potential health threat yet it sits-fermenting. We have complex mold issues in Cedar Rapids. Interestingly enough there doesn’t seem any standard that I can find that deals with such issues.
Sounds of Celebration could be heard downtown but everyone down there is ignorant to the potential unknown health risks these mold spores contain as they float silently through the air.