Tenants go without heat in Detroit's Lafayette Towers - KMSP-TV

Tenants go without heat in Detroit's Lafayette Towers

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Lafayette Towers Apartments in Detroit Lafayette Towers Apartments in Detroit
DETROIT (WJBK) -

Roughing it has become routine for tenants in Detroit's Lafayette Towers Apartments.

One tenant, Larry Hill, shows Fox 2's Randy Wimbley his set-up of multiple space heaters and an electric blanket on his bed, saying "it's extremely cold."

"I had to turn the oven on last night to kind of keep it warm in the apartment," Jacob Spalding tells us.

"I'm 70 years old, and living under these conditions is just ridiculous," says Gabrielle McEadey.

Tenants are all pointing the finger at the new owner of Lafayette Towers, Greg Jackson. He bought the property last year and committed to make 16 million dollars worth of improvements, which was to include a new heating system.

"He was listing so many things that he was going to do in the building - upgrades. We were going to have a coffee shop, but the main thing was he was going to address the repairs that needed to be done," McEadey says.

Fox 2 contacted Jackson to find out why the tenants do not have any heat right now. Jackson told us he's spending half a million dollars to install 10 boilers, but the workers doing the job were caught off guard with the cold weather.

"Since it got cold they're supposed to be doing some renovations or something like that. I don't know why they waited all summer to start until now," Spalding says.

The property manager for Lafayette Towers released this statement:
"While conducting seasonal maintenance on the boilers in Lafayette Towers Apartments, our maintenance personnel encountered unforeseen mechanical issues with the boilers. Contractors are on site, repairs are underway and we expect residents to have heat within 24 hours. Beyond the immediate repairs, the building owners have ordered significant replacements for the boilers and are in the process of caulking and weatherproofing the building. This is all part of a $16 million renovation to Lafayette Towers Apartments, an iconic Detroit building constructed in 1963. We regret any inconvenience this has caused our residents."
-Scott Allen, President FOURMIDABLE Real Estate Management

Jackson says the heat should be on within 72 hours.

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