Judge Orders Water’s Edge to Fund Relocation of Residents and Supports the City’s Longstanding Call for Life Safety Improvements
REVERE – Mayor Brian M. Arrigo announced this week new updates for the displaced residents of 370 Ocean Avenue, the site of a fire on June 21, 2022. In good news for those still without permanent housing, the Court upheld the complaint delivered by the City on behalf of five residents. The Court ordered Carabetta Company, owners of the Water’s Edge Apartments, to provide temporary housing for residents and ordered the company to hire an outside Project Manager and/or Registered Design Professional to complete the long-standing life-safety and remediation efforts necessary at the property.
“This order is a step in the right direction and a win for our residents,” said Mayor Arrigo. “The City of Revere will continue to take every legal action available to hold the Carabetta company accountable for their continued disregard for their properties and tenants.”
The City of Revere, on behalf of 5 residents who came forward, filed for injunctive relief as many of them have remained unhoused, living in cars and other unacceptable conditions. In granting the relief, the Court noted:
“This Court is unpersuaded that Water’s Edge comes to this Court with fully clean hands. Many of the violations cited in the Order to Correct issued by the City suggest a pattern and practice of patchwork repairs (for example, the corroded fire pump platform and the semi-operational fire doors) and outright neglect (for example, the missing fire extinguishers, the open windows in the stairwells affecting the operation of fire suppression systems, and the overdue failure to replace the fire alarm system.) In this Court’s view, the fire may not have been “caused” by Water’s Edge, but there is significant evidence suggesting that the extent of the damages could have been mitigated if Water’s Edge had maintained its fire systems in accordance with the applicable code requirements.”
For those reasons and others, the Court granted the residents an injunction and ordered Water’s Edge to provide within five days of the notice either hotel accommodations with kitchen facilities in a Revere-area hotel or an alternative temporary apartment in a habitable unit in another building at the Water’s Edge apartment complex. Further, the Court ordered that by September 1, 2022, Water’s Edge Partnership must either prepay for hotel accommodations through the month of September for each plaintiff or have moved each tenant into alternative housing. This matter will have a status hearing on October 20, 2022.
In granting the City of Revere injunctive relief against Water’s Edge, the Court noted,
“There is risk of irreparable harm to the City and its citizens if the Court does not intervene and closely monitor and manage Water’s Edge’s remediation efforts.”
In the City’s case against Water’s Edge, the Court ordered Water’s Edge to complete and file with the Court an Existing Building Investigation and Evaluation Report and ascertain the required work to provide a safe and code-compliant building for occupancy.
The Court’s view upheld the argument of the City that the fire may not have been “caused” by Water’s Edge, but there is significant evidence suggesting that the extent of the damages could have been mitigated if Water’s Edge had maintained its fire systems in accordance with the applicable code requirements.
The City continues to fine Water’s Edge up to $30,000 per day for Code violations and will soon commence inspections of Water’s Edge and other apartment buildings on the Beach.
A hearing is scheduled for September 8, 2022, where Water’s Edge shall provide testimony from its Project Manager and/or Registered Design Professional concerning long-standing life-safety and remediation efforts necessary at the property.