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Jul 13, 2012 10:38 PM

City Closes Historic Lexington Courthouse Due to Lead Hazard

A historic Lexington building is closed indefinitely because the Mayor's office says dangerous levels of damaged, lead-based paint were discovered inside.

The historic old courthouse on Main Street is home to three museums, including the Lexington History Museum. All three must find a new home for their exhibits. A complaint from a volunteer with the Public Safety Museum back in April launched an investigation, and the city hired a local firm, which found deteoriated, lead-based paint inside, and lead dust on the floors.

"The lead is on surfaces, so it's more of a wash your hands, wipe your feet sort of situation. It's not radioactive. It's not something that we're ingesting or breathing. But it is very dangerous for children so we don't want to invite the public in, nor can we invite the public in," explains the President of the Lexington History Museum, Jamie Millard.

For now, the Lexington History Museum's exhibits are online, but they are looking for a temporary physical space.

The Mayor's Office says the City is also investigating asbestos and mold levels in the building. Contractors have been brought in to figure out how much it would cost to fix the problem.

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