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Tenants in the Westview Heights high-rise apartment building in central Calgary are waiting in limbo as they have yet to find out when they will be able to return home after flooding left the building uninhabitable in December.

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Jaimin Raval has moved into the Westview Heights building at 825 8 Ave. SW with his parents three months ago after they left India for the city. Now he’s jumping from his friend’s upstairs to motel rooms after the building was flooded and frozen in the freezing December weather.

“We didn’t expect that to happen here, we don’t have more contact, so the first two days we lived with my friend on the mat,” Rayal said as he tried to recover. his business.

Hundreds of people were driven from their homes when pipes burst and electricity was cut in the building. Ajay Nehru, a spokesperson for building owners Mayflower Ventures, said that before people can return home, the building must pass inspections around electrical systems, elevators, heating systems and sprinklers.

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Nehru said crews were working regularly and he believed the building could pass all inspections except one around the elevators, which remain down. Overall, he said repairs to buildings could take months as the frost in the building thaws, but said most of those repairs would not affect residents.

“From our perspective, right now, what holds us back is when the elevators are ready for inspection,” Nehru said. “You know, it’s not just a matter of changing a room here, a room there. It’s a bunch of things that are related.

Nehru said they are in constant communication with the tenants, but the situation remains fluid and he does not have a specific timeline for when they will be allowed to return to their apartments.

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In the meantime, Raval has said the owners of the building will not let his family get out of their one-year lease. He said payments for hotel rooms had also stopped and they would have to pay next month’s rent.

“My parents and I have nothing to eat. We are paying ourselves to eat right now because all of our stuff is in the kitchen, ”Raval said. “They also refused to give us compensation. You also have to pay next month’s rent, and you can’t break the lease.

Raval said they were not allowed to enter their rooms to pick up belongings left behind.

Nehru said management has negotiated rates for multiple days of hotel rooms for residents. He said there will be discounts for their rent as they are not allowed to stay in the building and have moved the payment date from the first of the month to the 17th.

“One of the conditions for renting this building is that you have to provide us with proof of tenant insurance, and that’s exactly why we have it. That’s what he needs, ”said Nehru. “We have tenants, of course, who are in a difficult financial situation. So we were able to sort of work with the city, the fire department and the Red Cross, and we referred them to the Red Cross, and they set up a program to help them.

A GoFundMe set up to help residents cover costs was set up and raised $ 3,420.

– With files from Jim Wells

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