by: Cole Heath Updated:
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - City leaders condemned part of an Arlington apartment complex on Thursday.
Neighbors living at the Willow Lake Apartments say their damaged roofs haven’t been touched in months, and their complaints go unanswered.
Action News spoke with neighbors living at the complex off Arlington Road and Hare Avenue, and the property manager threw us off the property.
She threatened to call the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office even though a resident gave us permission to be there. But what we did see was shocking.
Bright orange “condemned” warning signs are posted on several doors on a block of apartments at Willow Lake.
Blue tarps serve as make-shift roofs after a severe storm back in November. Inside, we saw how the ceiling collapsed.
“The roof is caved in, and it’s a typical thing around here,” said a resident named Bill.
Bill didn’t want his name shown or real name used, but he said he’s lived here for 18 years and pays $395 a month in rent.
“They don’t have the money to repair them,” he said.
City code enforcement condemned the building Thursday, and they’re working to get more information about other possible complaints from residents.
“If they don’t have an AC unit in it, it’s not something you want to live in,” Bill said.
Across the complex, there are other uncondemned apartments with tarps covering the roofs and look like the condemned apartments.
We also tried to talk to management and got this response, “If you don’t get off the property, I’m going to be suing. Get off my property.”
So we stayed on the public road. Our crews have been to the complex several times the last couple of months.
In December, we saw raw sewage backing up inside Dennis Clark’s apartment after a November storm.
“My dogs got sick, we got sick, the smell,” Clark said.
Then Thursday, we saw how city officials condemned these apartments. Still, there are several more buildings that look just like it, tattered, but with people living in them.
“Put money into this place, and fix the roofs,” Bill said.
A city spokesperson said they are looking into any complaints at this complex and will get back to us Friday with what they find.