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Supports in place; Light-duty construction to resume at downtown library

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UPDATE: The mayor's office says the instability created by the compromised beam has been rectified and 'light-duty' construction activities may resume for the time being.

Further ongoing observations are needed to verify no additional damage to the
structure occurred.

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BATON ROUGE - A third-party engineer is taking a look at the downtown library as heavy equipment is brought in to stabilize the building's structure.

On Friday, the mayor's office said hydraulic jacks would be brought to the site to stabilize the overhang at the library. A spokesperson says construction work will not continue until the jacks are in place.

The city-parish is also recruiting a third-party contractor, Exponent, in order to obtain an exhaustive, independent, engineering analysis. Exponent is a multi-disciplinary engineering and scientific consulting firm.

In anticipation of heavy equipment and hydraulic lifts being placed on the site, the City-Parish closed the St. Louis Street crossover on North Boulevard in Town Square at 7:00 p.m. Friday. 

On April 18, trusses failed, causing cracks in the library's structure. Businesses were evacuated surrounding the construction site over fears of a possible collapse. A number of roads have been closed in recent weeks due to safety concerns.

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