Air conditioning broke down this week in a north side multi-unit building where three residents died during a prolonged heat wave in May.

But a resident of the James Sneider Apartments in Rogers Park – owned by the Hispanic Housing Development Corporation, a nonprofit developer of affordable housing – said Wednesday that management quickly informed residents of the problem and began installing units. portable air conditioning on Tuesday evening.

“It’s really nice,” said resident Catherine Cheeks, 75, who has lived in the building for about 15 years.

Cheeks, who lives on the fifth floor, said he found a flyer under his door early Tuesday in which management alerted residents to problems with the building’s “cooler.”

“The HVAC provider is on site and working around the clock to restore service,” the flyer said.

In mid-May, three Sneider residents — Janice Reed, 68; Gwendolyn Osborne, 72; and Delores McNeely, 76 – died during a prolonged heat wave.

Last month, the Chicago City Council passed an ordinance that, among other things, requires buildings housing the elderly, as well as other residential high-rises, to establish cooling centers in common areas when the index heat reaches 80 degrees. The index takes air temperature and factors in humidity to estimate how hot a person actually feels.

Cheeks said management made a cooling center available to residents on Tuesday.

During the May heat wave, temperatures in Cheeks’ fifth-floor apartment topped 90 degrees and she slept in the basement for two nights to stay cool, she said.

Paul Roldán, president and chief executive of the nonprofit developer, has previously said that the safety and security of their residents has always been a top priority and that they “welcome any ordinances that establish clear guidelines for landlords. and building managers”.

Leslie Perkins, Ald’s chief of staff. Maria Hadden (49), in whose neighborhood the apartment complex is located, said the alderman’s office was first made aware of the air conditioning problem by a local television station on Tuesday.

“It’s unfortunate that we’ve heard back,” Perkins said, adding that the neighborhood office had only received one call from a resident about the issue.

“We didn’t hear anything like the crunch last time around,” Perkins said.