100 students flooded out

Alanna Kelly

UPDATE: 3:15 p.m.

Students living at a private residence near UBC Okanagan were given just days to pack up their things and find a new home after their residence flooded. 

Alvin Kirsnantoputra moved from Indonesia to study in Kelowna and said he was in his residence when water started rushing through the building on Academy Way.

“The alarms went off and everyone was shouting to get out,” he said. “It was pretty hectic.” 

He has no family in Canada and chose the residence because it was walking distance to campus. 

“Housing two months before school ends is pretty hard to find,” he said.

A property manager with Premier Canadian Properties said a frozen pipe near the roof burst and sent water on every floor. 

“There was ankle-deep water,” said Donna Craig. “It is a huge job… It will be a couple million dollars I would think.”

A video taken by Dana Nazarek shows people trying to mop up the steady stream of water. 

“The whole living room area was full of water, we were using towels to soak it up,” he said. “It started to leak into our rooms and a bit coming down from the ceiling fans and light fixtures.”

Both Nazarek and Kirsnantoputra said no one from UBCO reached out to them for support. 

“We didn’t directly get contacted and housing office is closed during the break right now,” said Kirsnantoputra.

Luckily, they both found housing off campus.

“The other place is a bus ride away… so it’s alright,” said Kirsnantoputra.

When the building will open again is unclear and Craig says the worst scenario is that work may run over into September. 

ORIGINAL: 2 p.m.

Flooding at a private residence near UBC Okanagan caused many students to be homeless.

UBCO spokesperson Nathan Skolski says the U-Two condo building is a private residence and not part of campus housing.

Frustrated parents reached out to Castanet expressing concern and said their children were kicked out during mid-term exams. 

“It had a water leak, top floor, and all students have been evicted with one, maybe two-day notice,” said Glen Mills. “They have no place to go. My son is one, he is scrambling to just find a place to live so he can pursue his schooling.”

Many students have been scrambling on social media to find housing since they were evacuated. The flood happened Feb. 4. 

It’s not clear what caused the flood, but some believe it was a broken pipe.

Another woman says her grandson was told to leave, and she claims there are almost 100 students trying to find new homes. 

“This happened before midterms.... a big deal to university students,” said Janet McIver. 

According to Skolski, the university is in touch with many of the impacted students.

“We are able to offer alternate accommodation on campus for those seeking that option,” said Skolski. 

The four-storey building, which has 112 residences, was built by Mission Group in 2016. A two-bedroom, 788-square-foot rents for 2,050 a month.

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