STAFFORD TOWNSHIP — Senior citizens who were displaced from the Stafford By the Bay building on Bay Avenue after a water main broke earlier this month have started to return home.
As of Thursday afternoon, residents in 69 apartments had returned to their homes and an additional four units were expected to be ready by Monday, said Julia Zauner, spokeswoman for Springpoint Senior Living.
Stafford by the Bay, managed by Springpoint, is an affordable housing complex restricted to residents 62 years old and older. The building includes 84 one-bedroom units.
On Jan. 8, 90 residents were evacuated when a water main burst in the attic, activating the building’s fire pumps, which then pumped 4,000 gallons of water a minute through the broken pipe, police said.
Police Capt. Thomas Dellane said that several apartments collapsed after the incident as residents were moved out of the building.
Township Construction Official Bob Gaestel declared the building uninhabitable the evening of the incident, but since then repairs have been made to the apartments that suffered damage and flooding, Zauner said Thursday.
“There was water damage because the fire-suppression pipe was what burst, and we were actually in the process of inspecting the pipe when it happened. The building was not actually uninhabitable, but the township wanted everyone to be moved out,” Zauner said.
Zauner said additional apartments will undergo more repairs after an assessment of the damage occurred.
“Some units are waiting on materials and permits to be finalized. All residents have been notified, and our staff has been in touch with them to keep them apprised of the process. The staff there is so appreciative of the support from the community and the township,” she said.
Contact Donna Weaver:
@DonnaKWeaver on Twitter