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Park Police Investigating EastBanc Construction Site

The project at 1045 Wisconsin Ave. NW runs along the historic C&O Canal.

A construction trailer fell into the work site at 1045 Wisconsin Ave. NW, which the U.S. Park Police are investigating. Patch file photo.
A construction trailer fell into the work site at 1045 Wisconsin Ave. NW, which the U.S. Park Police are investigating. Patch file photo.
Updated 11:23 p.m. Thursday

U.S. Park Park Police stopped work on the EastBanc, Inc. construction site at 1045 Wisconsin Ave. NW in Georgetown Thursday as they investigated impacts the project could be having on the historic C&O Canal. 

EastBanc has District of Columbia permits for construction of a new residential project at that location, but does not currently have permits to work on the National Park Service easement area abutting the C&O Canal, according to U.S. Park Police Lt. Jeffrey Schneider.

"Right now the park police are investigating the incident," Schneider told Patch in an interview Thursday. 

A staff member at the Georgetown Ministry Center, which neighbors the property, told Patch there were tubes and hoses running from the construction site into the C&O Canal. The tubes were being used to pump water that was leaking from the canal into the construction site back into the canal, according to the staff member. 

Schneider was unable to confirm what type of work raised the concern of the Park Police, but said the investigation would include looking at any environmental impacts from construction on the historic area. 

EastBanc's Anthony Lanier returned Patch's request for information after business hours, but in a voicemail said he believe the issue "doesn't seem to be a big deal" and was merely a "coordination issue" between the construction workers and the park service.

As of Thursday afternoon the Park Police investigation was still underway and the investigators had not released any official findings. 

"They want to review how we're digging along the wall," Lanier explained in a voice message.

NPS will drain the canal enough to be able to examine the wall along the canal. The construction work will continue on the opposite side of the site during that time.

Depending on the NPS and Park Police findings, EastBanc could be fined and would likely need to apply for permits to use the National Park Service easement during future construction, according to Schneider. 

Thursday's incident was not the first snag during construction of the boutique seven-unit condo building. In June, a construction trailer fell into the work ditch from the sidewalk on Wisconsin Avenue.

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