An American steelworkers union wants to sell its inventory of historic American iron-and-steel buildings, arguing that they are being used for industrial purposes.
The Workers’ Building Owners Council, a group of unions representing about 30,000 steelworkers in the United States, said it has a “robust inventory” of the buildings that were once home to America’s industrial powerhouse, the company that built the World War II-era towers and World Trade Centers.
The group plans to sell the inventory at a November auction, the council said.
The company that owns the buildings, the New York-based Archibald Steel, has said it would not take any part in the auction, which is expected to raise $250 million.
But the building owners are trying to make the sale public in hopes of raising awareness of the problem.
Archibald spokeswoman Mary Ann White said the company has sold some of the historical buildings that the union acquired and wants the rest to go to the city for rehabilitation and reconstruction.
“We’re not going to sell to anyone,” White said.
The steelworkers have a “long-standing policy of never selling to any private party,” White added.
“They are not allowed to do that.”
The steel companies have said they don’t want to be in the business of demolition and are trying not to get involved in the auctions.
Archival footage showing the World Trades Building site.
Archibard said in a statement that it has donated “over 1,500 buildings” to the City of New York, including the World Towers.
The companies are also donating “over $500,000” to restore historic buildings, it said.
Archives of the steelworks in New York City.
A worker walks into the Archibard steel mill in Brooklyn, New York.
The archibard group has said that it will not be involved in any auctions.
The council said it plans to buy the buildings to preserve them and “to bring them to a place where they can be used for historic purposes.”