Cambridge officials extend fencing near Hearn building

CAMBRIDGE — During a recent visual inspection of the façade and cornice on the Herbert Hearn Hardware building at 509-511 Race St., representatives from Century Engineers noticed potentially dangerous structural issues with the neighboring building at 507 Race St., which has been vacant and without a roof since an arson fire gutted the building in 2012.

As a result of the subsequent report, the City of Cambridge will extend protective fencing, currently in front of the Hearn building, to include the building at 507 Race Street and the adjacent alleys to ensure public safety until a solution can be determined. No street closures are expected and parking should not be impacted.

“The current condition of (507 Race Street) is very poor. The third floor framing has deteriorated and the front (east) section has collapsed from exposure and elements,” wrote William Rockey, vice president of Building Structures at Century Engineers. “The 2x lumber shoring used to stabilize the top story of the brick exterior walls from the outside of the building has deteriorated and is dangerously inadequate.”

With renovation of the Hearn Building being scheduled, Mr. Rockey expressed concern for the workers, pedestrians and surrounding buildings.

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