Could a toxic site be on your Philly block? New research reveals hidden hazards

October 12, 2018

The 2600 block of North 30th Street in Strawberry Mansion, a block where several properties are in Lead Court. Sociology professors Scott Frickel of Brown University and James R. Elliott of Rice University mined more than 50 years of business directories to build a database of potentially hazardous industrial sites, and discovered that they are as thick as three per square block, on average, across Philadelphia.

By Staff

Decades after the factories of Kensington and Northern Liberties began closing, the area’s industrial legacy remains in plain sight. Last year’s Toxic City investigation — in which Inquirer and Daily News reporters found lead-tainted soil in parks, playgrounds, and yards across the River Wards — made clear the hazards remain as well.

Now, new research reveals that those hidden threats extend far beyond that small corner of Philadelphia and that upward of 93 percent of hazardous industrial sites are not tracked by regulators.

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