Garrison Community Center has been temporarily closed because of a possible lead hazard, city officials announced Wednesday.
The more than 100-year-old community center east of the City Market on Fifth Street has been undergoing renovations and some of the work may have stirred up dangerous lead dust, according to the Kansas City Health Department.
Inspectors found lead dust on the upper floors and in the basement of the building, and most of the community center will remain closed until the lead is cleaned up. The center’s new gym may remain open if inspectors find it is unaffected by the lead in the older portion of the building.
Anyone who has been at the building or has children who have been at the building is invited to call the Health Department to schedule a blood lead test.
“Staff and visitors may have had some level of exposure, but the risk is low,” Amy Roberts, program manager of Kansas City’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, wrote in a statement announcing the closure.
“Most childhood lead exposures occur from deteriorating paint in homes built before 1978, but can be from other sources.”
Lead poisoning most frequently occurs when adults and children ingest lead dust. Children may be at greater risk because they are more likely to place objects, such as chipped paint, in their mouths.
Residents concerned about lead poisoning can call the Health Department at 816-513-6048 to schedule an appointment with the Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program.
The entire building may be open again in May.
For more information, go to www.kcmo.gov/health.