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Structural problems force second evacuation of B.C. highrise in less than four years

The Canadian Press
Structural problems force second evacuation of B.C. highrise in less than four years

LANGFORD, B.C. – A highrise apartment building on Vancouver Island has been evacuated for the second time since 2019 because of structural defects.

The City of Langford revoked the occupancy permit for the 11 storey, 90 unit, RidgeView Place on Monday after an independent engineer found structural safety issues and recommended evacuation.

The building was first known as Danbrook One when it was completed almost four years ago, but seismic, foundation and other concerns forced owner Centurion Apartment Properties to clear the building just days before Christmas in 2019.

An investigation determined the structural engineer was not qualified for that type of concrete construction and the building was repaired and renamed RidgeView Place before the suites were rented again last year.

A statement from the City of Langford says it would not have issued the 2022 occupancy permit if it had known that documents from the remediation engineer could not be considered an assurance of compliance with the building code.

The Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of BC says there are ongoing potential life-safety risks in RidgeView Place, and a notice from Centurion says rental contracts have been ended and it offers to work with residents to find other accommodations.

The statement from Centurion says it is too early to know when renters can return.

“The option of temporary shoring of the garage area is currently being reviewed with the engineers to provide residents safe access to come back and retrieve their belongings,” says the notice to residents.

Centurion has offered $1,000 to the leaseholder of each affected unit in what the statement says is a “gesture of compassionate assistance.”

Occupants of the suites will also be reimbursed for rent paid between April 24 -30.

A discipline notice from Engineers and Geoscientists BC issued last year, said the building’s original structural engineer admitted to “incompetence and unprofessional conduct” related to the design and construction of the building.

Brian McLure was banned from practising engineering in B.C. or using the title “engineer” or “professional engineer,” but if he meets several requirements, he can apply for reinstatement as early as next year, the notice said.

The Nanaimo resident also agreed to pay a fine of $25,000 and an additional $32,000 toward the legal costs of the professional organization.


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