Tenants forced out of 'unsafe' building in Point St. Charles
Published Wednesday, February 21, 2018 8:42PM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, February 21, 2018 8:43PM EST
Tenants of two buildings in Point St. Charles will have until noon Thursday to leave their homes.
Their landlord's lawyer failed to receive a court injunction to stop an evacuation order implemented after the city deemed the buildings unsafe to live in.
The evacuation order affects about a dozen tenants of buildings on Centre St. and Chateauguay St.
Last month, inspectors found structural problems, electrical issues, water infiltration, vermin and problems with the fire escape.
The landlord tried to argue the city was overreacting.
In court, his lawyer Bruce Taub presented an engineer's report that said the building was structurally sound, adding that the owner was seeking extra time to do the repairs.
The judge ruled the building has too many issues adding that any repair work was never done properly -- in the case of a fire, he worried someone could be killed.
“It was his determination that they were given ample notice, and we'll respect what the judge says,” said Taub.
Some tenants have been living in the building for 20 years and pay less than $600 per month. They worry they'll never be able to find such low rent so close to downtown.
They were seeking a separate injunction that would force the landlord to compensate them for moving and hotel expenses at a cost of roughly $3,000 each.
That injunction was also rejected, as the judge determined the tenants would have to seek that compensation through the Regie de Logement.
The judge said they'll have to go to the rental board for that
“The rental board, and this is a known fact, they can't hear our case before a month, a month and half,” said Stephane Proulx, the lawyer for the tenants.
“My client wants to help these people; that's what he told me,” said Taub. “I can't commit for him but certainly he's a reasonable gentleman.”