herald

Monday 11 December 2017

Families given one month to evacuate city's fire risk flats

DUBLIN CITY Council has ordered the complete evacuation of one of the city's most dangerous apartment complexes because of fire safety risks.

More than 70 residents of Temple Bar's Crampton Buildings have been given just one month to evacuate their homes so essential refurbishment works can be carried out.

The council notified the residents of the development last night -- more than a week after the Herald revealed that tenants would be forced to leave their homes.

The flats, many of them dilapidated, are not protected by fire certificates.

The council says it has secured funding of €2.9m for the works, which will take two years to complete.







Serious

Two council complexes -- at Bridgefoot Street and Townsend Street -- have been designated to house the residents while the works are being carried out.

Residents at the meeting indicated that they would discuss the proposals today but that they were happy following talks with the council.

However, Independent councillor Mannix Flynn has slammed the council for their "appalling treatment" of the families in Crampton Buildings.

"Residents and families read this in the Herald 10 days ago and it is only now they are being told they have to evacuate their homes. I want to know how long city officials have known about the serious safety risks posed to people here. The way they are treating people -- by giving them one month's notice to leave -- is nothing short of appalling."







Defects

Mr Flynn is also calling on the council to make public an engineers' report which, he says, lays bare the serious defects in the complex.

The evacuation process will be watched closely by well-known developer Johnny Ronan.

His company, Treasury Holdings, owns the ground floor, which consists of restaurants and shops.

The council says most bedrooms are "inner rooms", accessible only through living rooms, which is a breach of fire safety regulations. It also claims that the complex needs walls upgraded to walls and new wiring and plumbing.

In a statement, the City Council said: "DCC has a unique opportunity, having two new apartment blocks close to Crampton Buildings, to offer residents in Crampton Buildings alternative high quality accommodation for the estimated two years that the refurbishment work will take.

"The Crampton Buildings apartments do not comply with current building and fire safety standards and given the extent of the internal and external refurbishment needed to bring the building to the required standards and to the constrained nature of the complex, it would be impractical to have these works carried out with the residents in situ."

Council officials were today available to meet residents on the issue.

hnews@herald.ie

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