Springfield apartment building condemned, leaving several residents without homes
SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - The Springfield Gardens apartments have now ended up with one building at 685 State Street being condemned, which leaves people in 15 units without a place to live.
“The condemned notice came this past Friday after dealing with code enforcement for an entire week and them trying to get Springfield Gardens to do something about the issues that we are dealing with…I give birth in a week, so I am very overwhelmed about the situation. I want Springfield Gardens to be responsible,” said Springfield Gardens tenant Lucii Arriaga.
Arriaga told Western Mass News that she has had no heat in her apartment over the past week and explained just a few of the other issues she has had to deal with in the past year, which are very similar to complaints Western Mass News has heard from people living in other Springfield Gardens buildings.
“We have mold in our bathroom and our entire bathroom pretty much needs to be gutted out. We deal with a lot of plumbing issues, so sometimes, we don’t have full access to water. It’s just trickling coming in or we didn’t have hot water for over a week…There’s needles all the time. I actually don’t let my kid out on the back porch. I don’t let the animals back there because you can find a needle easily and it’s pretty scary,” Arriaga noted.
She said the management team at Springfield Gardens has not helped her find a new place to stay after receiving the notice that the building was condemned.
“They do not want to relocate us. They are claiming that it is our issue, our problem basically. We have to move, we have to get out of this apartment, and we need to find better living conditions…The mayor needs to do something about these people. Springfield Gardens has been doing this for a very long time,” Arriaga added.
We took her concerns straight to Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno. He told us he is aware of the ongoing issues at Springfield Gardens apartment buildings and wants to see management step up and take action.
“We’ve been working very closely with code enforcement and my chief development officer, Tim Sheehan. This Springfield Gardens, they are atrocious, a definition of a slum lord, very nonresponsive, and that’s not right for my residents in the city of Springfield,” Sarno explained.
He said his office will continue to pursue court action against the owners.
“It is the ownership of Springfield Gardens. They are responsible for providing temporary housing aspects for those tenants affected by these condemned houses, whether it’s hotels, motels. It’s their responsibility and we are going to continue to pursue action. They can’t run and hide from us,” Sarno added.
We did reach out to the property manager and the lawyer representing Springfield Gardens several times on Tuesday, but have not yet heard back.
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