Shoddy construction work at a luxury midtown New York City building left residents with apartments covered in a dust that had higher levels of a carcinogen than what was found at Ground Zero, a report says.

Crystalline silica, a toxic substance found in mortar, permeated many of the apartments at L'Ecole, at 212 E. 47th St., during the facade work, said Steven Wagner, a lawyer for tenants who are now suing the building.

Microecologies Inc., an environmental-testing firm, reported finding "highly elevated levels" of the toxin in Steven Rosenhaus' 20th-floor apartment last May, seven months after he says he came home to find it blanketed in dust from the exterior work.

"It was like there had been a snowfall," said Rosenhaus, a 53-year-old work-at-home consultant who suffered breathing trouble and eye irritation.

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