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Monday, March 27, 2006

Another Brick Story

Some neighbors excavated paving bricks from brick sidewalks in Old North in the construction zone -- 41 new homes are being built and nine buildings are being rehabbed as part of the North Market Place project -- that are being paved with concrete. They stored them alongside of our house. Then they dug more and stored those alongside of our house.

Now that we are anticipating building scaffolding along the length of our house, the bricks need to be moved. I have been moving them by hand to a new stack in the middle of the yard. First, I moved them in two's -- one in each hand. Then, I moved them in fours, arranged in alternating directions so they stayed a manageable square unit. I graduated to groups of six before triumphing at carrying stacks of eight this past weekend. I have completely moved the newest accumulation and have gotten about 20% of the first pile gone.

There are easily 500 bricks between the two piles. They appear to date to the 1870s or 1880s. Our neighbors may use some of them, but as part of storing them we are using them to build beds and fill in missing areas in our paved area (we have extensive original brick paving around our house).

There are thousands more of the bricks in the neighborhood, under grass and weeds or being uncovered as the new homes are built. I hope that neighbors continue to save them, because we are glad to store them in our yard (actually four fenced city lots) and have plenty of room. What we lack is the time to dig pavers ourselves.


cheesyrealtor said...

Are you referring to the hydraulic pressed bricks that weigh in at about 9 lbs each? Carrying 8 at a time is some feat of strength my lean friend.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand.

Why dig up the pavers?

How will they be reused?

Michael Allen said...

Since the North Market Place project is using concrete to pave sidewalks, the contractors are simply laying new sidewalks over the pavers. At some sites, pavers are being sent to the landfill along with other "fill" materials. This is understandable since the workers have a huge job to do and were not hired to salvage the bricks. It's up to ONSL residents to rescue the pavers, because otherwise they will be covered over or thrown out.

The pavers are staying in Old North, and are free to any residents who want them for paving projects.

Ideally, they would be dug only to be re-set for use as intended: sidewalks. Right now, that would be an expensive project for a neighborhood with many needs.