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Miami Beach condo evacuated for structural issues a year after Surfside collapse

The City of Miami Beach ordered the evacuation of a condominium building immediately after inspectors raised safety concerns.

Residents of the beachfront Port Royale Condominium have had just hours to evacuate after an inspection found ‘excessive movement’ of a concrete beam from its original position in the car park of the 164-unit high-rise structure, CNN reported.

The inspection took place during the building’s 50-year recertification process. The 14-story condo complex sits a few miles from the beach at Champlain Towers South in Surfside, where 98 people were killed in a June 2021 cave-in.

Engineers who carried out the inspection said shoreline work will take place within 10 days and a second inspection will determine whether residents can return to their homes or not.

“The City of Miami Beach yesterday issued an unsafe structure advisory at 6969 Collins Avenue asking residents to vacate immediately based on a report from the building’s structural engineer,” said Melissa Berthier, spokeswoman for the city, to CNN.

“The tenant relocation order applies to those who rent in the building as required by municipal code.”

Engineers visited the building 10 months ago and marked priority areas for repair in the garage. Repairs began four weeks ago and engineers were called in to oversee the work last week.

The inspection report, obtained by local news station WPLG, says the building’s structural engineer discovered “excessive deflection” in a concrete beam in the car park.

Experts noted in the report that the beam that exhibited excessive movement was meant to support the entire building structure.

The apartment complex also suffered wall damage and water leaking into an electric gutter, pictures show.

Resident Marsh Markaj told WPLG that he first noticed structural issues in the building two years ago.

“Cracks in the column, cracks in the base, in the garage, behind the pool, everywhere,” Mr Markaj told the outlet. “It is not possible to solve this problem; I do not think so.”

Water leak in an electric gutter

(local10/Miami Building Department)

Spalling on the south side of the property

(local10/Miami Building Department)

The sudden evacuation comes more than a year after the Surfside tragedy. Miami building officials came under intense scrutiny and received calls to change laws after the collapse.

In June, a judge ruled that the families of the 98 people killed in the Champlain Towers South condo collapse should receive a $1 billion share.

Although neither party admitted wrongdoing, the construction of the luxury condominium would have been somehow responsible for the collapse of the Champlain South towers.

Years of maintenance issues and questions about the quality of its original construction and inspections in the early 1980s, as well as sea level rise caused by climate change and weather damage. intrusion, were cited.

According to Associated Pressnew laws now require buildings to be recertified after 25 years if they are within three miles of the coast.

The Independent Gt

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