Residents allowed to return to condemned apartment building

LOCKPORT, N.Y. (WIVB) – More than two weeks after being evicted from their Lockport apartment building, residents are being allowed to return.

On July 29, Town of Lockport Building Inspector Brian Belson condemned the Robinson Road apartment building, ordering the tenants – men, women, and children – out into the rain, with only about 15 minutes prior notice. Belson was accompanied by Niagara County Sheriff’s deputies, first responders from the Rapids Volunteer Fire Company, and ambulances.

Once the building was evacuated, the first floor windows and doors of the building at 6315 Robinson Road were then boarded up.

Belson condemned the building after a fire alarm went off. But he never explained why to residents or to News 4’s Al Vaughters.

Notices posted on the building did not name any dangerous violations. A Freedom of Information request from News 4 returned two pages and 12 citations, but not one of those citations listed a violation. Each citation simple stated a section of the Property Maintenance Code of New York, without specifying what is wrong.

The property manager tells News 4 the building has been re-opened to residents after Belson issued a Certificate of Occupancy early Friday evening. Some residents are in the process of moving back in, while others are in the process of retrieving their belongings and moving out.

Any Robinson Road tenants who cannot get answers from the building inspector have been advised to contact the New York Attorney General’s Consumer Hotline about this controversy at 853-8404.

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