80-year-old shingle factory in West Dallas to shut down
DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A Dallas mother just wanted a cleaner environment to raise her children.
Tonight, nearly a year after that mother renewed long standing concerns about pollution from an 80-year-old shingle factory down the street, she got her wish.
Now that factory has announced it’s shutting down.
West Dallas residents have long complained about smell and air quality from this shingle factory.
But those complaints got nowhere until one woman started a campaign that shows anyone how to take on an environmental nuisance and win.
Janie Cisneros never left the quiet West Dallas street she grew up on that’s only a few feet away from a large roofing material plant.
“It was always in the background. It’s always been in the background,” Cisneros, founder of GAFs Gotta Go said. “The burnt rubber smell, the burnt asphalt smell, the rotten egg smell.”
After decades of just dealing with it, Cisneros decided to look into the GAF’s environmental impact and was stunned by what she discovered.
“We live next door to a mega polluter and in order for us to have a cleaner environment, a healthier environment, we have to remove what’s hurting us what’s harming us,” Cisneros said.
Her campaign, called GAF’s Gotta Go, began last September.
Today, the 80-year-old company announced in a statement that it would shut down over the next seven years and relocate its 150 employees.
“Our plan allows for these individuals and families to be supported through this transition, while also allowing for the development of the West Dallas neighborhood to meet the future needs of the City and community,” GAF said in a statement.
It no longer fits in a neighborhood where new residential developments are creeping closer to factories that were once miles away.
“What GAF said, if they’ve heard the community loud and clear and that they recognize that as West Dallas is changing and becoming more residential, that this industrial use just no longer fits in West Dallas,” Dallas City Council Member, District 6, Omar Narvaez said.
But GAF was always at the end of the street Cisneros lived on and where she now raises her young daughter.
“My daughter, when I take her outside I don’t want to be concerned about what she’s what she’s inhaling,” Cisneros said.
In the statement, GAF did not say where it’s relocating to.