From the outside, the roof of an apartment building on King Street West may look like an ordinary residential building.
However, when you walk in, you can’t tell the difference between the two.
That’s because a large amount of asbestos has fallen into the tile flooring and ceiling tiles.
“When we opened this building in 2011, we had asbestos removal in place,” said Mark Smith, a Toronto resident.
“There was a total of six to eight pieces of asbestos in the ceiling and flooring.”
Smith said he and his neighbours were unaware that there were so many asbestos-laden tiles.
Smith said that he was shocked to discover that the tiles had asbestos-like qualities when he first arrived at the building.
“It wasn’t until a few years ago that we learned that there was a significant amount of it,” he said.
Smith said that the city has yet to determine the source of the asbestos.
Smith has been living in the building for eight years, but it has never been inspected.
“It’s been around for a few hundred years,” Smith said.
The building, which is on the west side of King Street, has been owned by the Royal Society of Canada since the mid-1990s.
It has been inspected three times and recently reopened.
The building has not been inspected by the city because the asbestos is so high, but Smith said it would have to be a serious accident.
He said that while there are some asbestos-containing tile floors in the Toronto area, it’s rare.
“If there was an incident, it would be a real problem.
If they could find it, there’d be no need for this building to reopen,” he added.
It’s a problem that’s been growing in Toronto for a while, and Smith said the city should have been more vigilant.
According to a 2014 report by the Canadian Association of Occupational Health and Safety, the city of Toronto has about 2,000 inspectors, but only 5 per cent of them have the required training and experience to determine if asbestos is a problem in the city.
There are a lot of unanswered questions about asbestos, and it’s likely that many people are unaware of its existence.
“I think they would not be surprised that the asbestos that fell into our building did not come from a commercial building,” Smith added.
Smith said the building owner has been working with the city to get the city’s attention, but said that even though he is still living in his apartment, he plans to move to another building.
If the city wants to find out who was responsible for the asbestos, it should be the owner or someone that the owner knows.
Smith suggested that the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care should investigate.