North End Residents Evacuated From Building Allowed to Collect Belongings

Nearly a week after a building in Boston's North End was evacuated due to structural concerns, residents still have no idea when they will be allowed to live in their units. They were briefly let in to collect belongings Tuesday, but only for a few minutes.

The building, located at 464 Hanover St., was found to be unsafe for occupancy by an engineering firm. The discovery happened after bricks started falling from the facade a few weeks ago and a permit was pulled to do emergency repairs.

According to the structural report given to the city's Inspectional Services Department, the engineer called in to do exploratory work found the building's steel beams were deteriorating and had "potential for catastrophic failure."

Since then, the tenants who live in the two dozen units have been forced to find temporary housing. On Tuesday morning, they were given an hour window where they could go inside one at a time for 10 minutes each to get their things.

"Just grab as much as you can and get out," one resident said. "It's hard to get all of your valuables in 10 minutes."

There is also a business located in the bottom of the building. MyStryde is a popular running studio and has been forced to close during what can be an especially busy season, with runners training for the Boston Marathon.

"Every day, a customer could be deciding to go somewhere else, so it's a big loss from a business standpoint," MyStryde owner Becca Skudder said.

NBC10 Boston reached out to the property management company, Affinity. Employees denied our request for an interview, but said they currently do not know when residents will be allowed back. When asked how the structural issues got this bad, they had no comment.

"We need to know where we can go and when we can get our furniture out, it's important," Giancarlo Tiberi, one of the condo owners said.

Engineers and inspectors were back on the scene Tuesday assessing the damage. Those who live and work in the building said they understand the repairs will take time, but they would like to know how long they will be waiting.

"We'll get through it," Skudder said. "We'll get back up on our feet, but right now, it is just not a great situation."

Affinity is hosting an informational owner's meeting at the Nazzaro Community Center on Wednesday at 6 p.m. According to an email sent out to tenants, the purpose of the meeting will be to address concerns and provide information about what the company knows to date.

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