The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) ordered HNR Properties to stop its demolition work in the heart of downtown Toronto out of concerns that radioactive dust could give holiday shoppers a toxic shower.
The business at 258 Victoria St. was once a radium dial painting factory, typically used to create glow-in-the-dark watches before concerns about radiation were known.
The CNSC fears the release of radioactive contamination if the building is demolished.
Since “demolition work is imminent,” the order was “deemed necessary to ensure the health and safety of workers and the public and protections of the environment,” an inspector wrote in a letter to the developer last week.
It is unclear exactly when the demolition was scheduled to start.
HNR Properties announced it has hired someone to remove the contamination, which they believe to be quite limited.
HNR must file a report with CNSC once it has taken further action. At that time, CNSC can decide if the demolition can continue.