Rochester Towers Condominiums needing long-term fix despite work to stabilize building

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(ABC 6 News) – The City of Rochester provided an update on Tuesday about the ongoing work at the Rochester Towers Condominiums which includes the building requiring a full long-term fix.

The City said starting last Friday, June 2, and continuing on Saturday, June 3, the building was shored up to reduce the loading on the columns in question and stabilize the building.

Engineers continue to assess the entire building to ensure any other potential issues are identified.

5th Ave. has since re-opened, which means all the roads surrounding the building are now open. While that may be good news for drivers, there hasn’t been much good news for the 180 residents of this building.

Some were told they could return as soon as Tuesday, but now they’re learning it could take a month or longer to get back home.

Tuesday engineers continued work on the Rochester Tower.

“So, I mean know that there is that big of the building that could possibly fall or deteriorate at any point or moment. It definitely would be scary in downtown Rochester where there’s a lot of people walking around,” said Chris Rosen.

The shoring work that is being done has provided the immediate stability necessary, but the City says a full long-term fix for the building is required.

The City says once the full work is complete and the magnitude of the issues identified, there will be a better understanding of potential timelines regarding resident access, plans for remediation, and construction activities.

Chris Rosen works down the street from the Rochester Tower he said this situation makes him feel a little uneasy.

“Maybe if it got demolished or rebuilt, I would feel a little safer, but as far as just restabilizing it I would still maybe have a couple of concerns,” said Rosen.

But for residents of the condos, they still have to pay their mortgages and HOA dues. And as far as temporary housing goes many of them are having to pay out of pocket because their insurance companies won’t assist.

Olmsted County officials say their housing stability team is ready to help if any residents are in need, but they haven’t had any residents reach out for help just yet.

ABC 6 News has been trying to talk to the management company since last week, but they have still not responded.

Many residents say they’re frustrated by a lack of communication, and how this whole thing has been handled.

The City says its Community Development department will continue to support the effort of contractors working on this project, which includes the structural engineering firm hired by Rochester Towers Condominiums.