Harbor Pointe Apartments elevator has been out since May, leaving residents with mobility issues stranded on top floors

NOW: Harbor Pointe Apartments elevator has been out since May, leaving residents with mobility issues stranded on top floors

BENTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Residents living on the second and third floors at Harbor Pointe have not had a working elevator since May.

According to management at the complex, the elevator was taken offline for the safety of the residents in order to replace a corroded part.

But even six months later, the elevator is still out, and residents are upset.

“Get it fixed, that’s all I can say,” said Bennie Bragg, who’s lived at Harbor Pointe for eight years.

“You’ve got so many sickly people here, you’ve got people on dialysis here. It’s just not right!” said Evelyn Rufus, whose mother lives on the second floor and has health issues that keep them from being able to use the stairs to get down and out of the complex.

“She’s 82 years old,” said Rufus. “She’s had both of her knees done. She has back issues, so we have to help her up. She has a walker that she has to walk with. I have to carry it down the stairs to get her to safety. So, it hasn’t been a pleasant experience at all.”

Bragg said that walking all the way up to the third floor every day has been hard on him: “I’m not the healthiest person in the world. I’ve got diabetes, neuropathy in my feet, I’m taking all this medicine. What if I pass out? There’ve been a couple times I’ve been up there and felt dizzy and I’ve had to catch myself with the railing!”

He added that some tenants in wheelchairs and walkers that haven’t been able to leave since the elevator was shut down and recalled seeing at least one sick resident have to be walked from the third floor all the way down to the ground level to be placed on a gurney by first responders.

“It’s not right,” he said.

According to the management of Harbor Pointe, the reason it’s taken so long to repair the elevator was due to issues being unable to secure the necessary part, though just last Friday, the repairs were finally made.

However, the elevator is still out of service, because a phone line needs to be installed by AT&T and then the repairs need to be approved by a building inspector.

The apartment management was unable to provide a time frame as to when this would take place, but added that the elevator was “an amenity, not a necessity” for residents.

“How can you have an apartment building with an elevator and not get it fixed?” asked Bragg. “You want your money, for your rent? I pay $625 a month and I think I should be accommodated for that elevator, because all that walking up and down the stairs, it can take a toll on you.”

Rufus told ABC57 that some families have pulled their relatives out of Harbor Pointe because they’ve been paying full rent without access to a working elevator and are worried for their wellbeing.

Another tenant— who wished to remain anonymous—said they were looking to bring legal action against the landlord in charge of Harbor Pointe over the handling of this situation.

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