Last residents given $1,000 incentive to leave unsafe highrise

Must vacate highrise

The remaining tenants of a suburban Victoria highrise that was deemed unsafe last month are being asked by the owner to leave, with an additional $1,000 for their troubles.

On Thursday, Centurion Property Associates sent a “notice to vacate” to the approximately 35 units still occupied in the 90-unit Danbrook One building in Langford.

“Since we do not, at this time, even have a scope of work that may be required to restore the occupancy permit or a timeline for the completion of repairs … we have to take the unfortunate step of requiring all remaining residents to vacate their units for their own safety and to remove their belongings from the building as soon as possible,” Centurion said in a statement.

Centurion is offering each leaseholder who moves out — and those who have already vacated the building — $1,000 in “compassionate assistance” as of next week.

The owner is also reimbursing any rent paid from Dec. 21 onward, returning damage and pet deposits, and offering renters the option to return once work is completed.

The building remains classified by the City of Langford as unsafe for both occupants and the public, Centurion said.

Company representative Greg Romundt said Centurion is awaiting a third-party engineer’s report that will detail what, if any, work needs to be done.

The building owner says it’s committed to completing any work required for engineers to approve the building, and will allow residents who want to return to their homes to do so at their original rents.

On Dec. 18, Langford questioned the structural integrity of the 11-storey highrise after being tipped off by the Engineers and Geoscientists B.C. association, which had been investigating a complaint since April.

On Dec. 20, the city revoked the building’s occupancy permit after an independent engineering report for the municipality confirmed problems with the building’s gravity system and its lateral system, which affects how it could respond to an earthquake. In addition to faulty first- and second-floor support beams, there are other building-code requirements the structure does not meet.

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