Canton residents flooded from apartments hope to be back by Christmas

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Canton residents flooded from apartments hope to be back by Christmas

Categories: News

CANTON, November 26, 2021

Formerly homeless residents made homeless again when a burglar flooded their apartment building last week are hoping to get home by Christmas.

Most of the 51 residents displaced Nov. 16 from the YWCA-owned Gateway House II on Walnut Avenue NE remained in a local hotel on Friday.

“The insurance adjusters are still assessing the damages,” said Shana Smith, the YWCA CEO. She hopes to have that damage estimate next week.

In the meantime, 44 were staying at the hotel, one was moved to another apartment in Gateway House I, one was staying in an ICAN-owned apartment and five had found other arrangements, Smith said.

The people in the hotel, however, are “unlikely to be out of the hotel until before Christmas,” she said.

Most were asleep inside their 40-unit apartment building around 1:30 a.m. when they were awakened by police and firefighters banging on their doors as the first and second floors began to flood. A man had just smashed out the front glass doors, barricaded himself in the laundry room and then set off the building sprinkler system.

The building was evacuated. The residents were ushered across the street to the YWCA gymnasium where they spent a couple nights under the care of the staff and local American Red Cross volunteers.

Before a week was up, Smith said, the Sisters of Charity, United Way of Greater Stark County, Hoover Foundation, Stark Community Foundation and Marathon Petroleum raised $70,000 to cover the displaced residents’ hotel stay for three weeks.

On Thursday, Harvest Meals through First Christian Church supplied the residents with a Thanksgiving Day meal.

The hotel has been supplying a hot breakfast daily, and the Refuge of Hope has been supplying lunch and dinner. The YWCA is giving the residents money for laundry, and YWCA and hotel staff are checking in with the residents two or three times a day to ensure their needs are met, Smith said.

The building wasn’t fully dried out until Friday, she said. That’s when insurance adjusters walked through it.

Since then, bids went out for the restoration. They were awarded to J. Bowers Construction, Smith said.

“We have to also have our tenants walk through and assess the damages (to their apartments),” she said, adding, “We have a solid plan in place.”


Article from Canton Repository. Click here to view.