SOUTH BOSTON (WBZ-AM) -- The Loyal Crown Linen smokestack, which towered over Dorchester Street and Old Colony Avenue for decades, was taken down in a controlled demolition Friday.
The 120-foot tower was destroyed top-to-bottom by a tall crane with a giant claw, which slowly erased the words "Loyal Crown" from the Boston skyline.
Field project manager John Piekutoski told WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Bernice Corpuz he grew up just a few blocks away--and had a special connection to the old factory.
"They were an icon in the neighborhood," he said. "From the highway, you could actually see the smokestack and the writing on it that said 'Loyal Crown.' So it's almost like a piece of history gone."
Piekutoski said he welcomes the change of scenery in the neighborhood.
"This area was basically run down and underused, and just needed a boost," he said. "Basically, it was an eyesore."
But that eyesore helped him pay for gas and other bills as a young man, when he worked for Loyal Crown.
"My high school job, and I think my first year of college too, was to unload the dirty linen," he said. "It was a good little high school gig."
The five-acre industrial site will some day have over 600 residential units as part of what's being called Washington Village.
"It's definitely an improvement to the neighborhood, and it was a much-needed revitalization of this area," Piekutoski said.
And some of the history will remain--the white-painted bricks from the smokestack will be used as pavers for the new development.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Bernice Corpuz reports