Asbestos abatement will be required before demolition resumes on the retired Montezuma-Cortez High School building.
Re-1 school district officials announced Friday that the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has ruled that the primer used on concrete blocks of the building contains friable asbestos. That means fibers could be released into the atmosphere, so the primer must be removed before demolition can continue. In a release, the district said an abatement contractor will use pressurized water to blast the coating from the concrete blocks, capturing the water and taking it to an approved waste facility in Utah. The district had disputed the idea that the asbestos was friable, but the state disagreed. After the asbestos abatement, the remaining materials will be taken to the Montezuma County Landfill or recycled. Demolition is expected to be finished by spring.