Residents of an Oak Park apartment building were forced to vacate their homes after a building inspection discovered sloping floors.
After the building owner failed to submit a structural stability report by an engineer on time, the village determined the building was in “imminent danger of failure or collapse,” ABC 7 Chicago reported. Residents were given five days’ notice to evacuate the building after 33 Realty missed the Nov. 5 deadline.
During a building inspection on Oct. 22, the village of Oak Park found that the floors throughout the building had an unusual slope — something residents had noticed before. “When you take out a shopping cart in the front, it rolls down,” resident Joyce Brown told ABC 7.
The inspector noted that in the front and back units of the building, the floors had slopes as steep as three or four inches. An unfinished unit in the rear of the building also had a cracked concrete floor.
A structural engineer hired by building management made note of the same problems in the building, but couldn’t issue an official opinion without doing a full analysis. That process could take up to a month to complete and could require the floors to be opened up to fully examine the building’s structure.
“The safety and well-being of our residents is our only priority,” Eric Weber, one of the owners of 33 Realty, which took over management of the building just two months ago, told the Chicago Sun-Times. “Every resident has been contacted in person or in writing. And they’ve been notified they have a place to live.”
However, residents of 930 North Boulevard, who just paid rent for their apartments, say the property manager is reportedly not answering or returning calls from the tenants. Additionally, the manager hasn’t submitted a required evacuation plan with the village either.
“We’ve heard nothing. We’ve left voicemails, emails,” Denise Eugenides, who flew in to help her 85-year-old mother who lives in the building, told ABC 7. “We are at a loss. She’s up there in complete shock.”
[ABC7] — Victoria Pruitt