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Nowhere To Go For Residents Of Condemned Apartment Building

MIAMI (CBS4) –The City of Miami deemed an apartment building uninhabitable effective 5 p.m. Friday.

For residents of the condemned building, located at 402 Northwest 12 Avenue, they are left without a place to live.

However, there is hope.

City Administrator Pablo Canton said the city plans to send a crew Monday to get displaced tenants set up at local shelters.

On Friday, however, residents like Natalie Ruiz were hard at work packing.

Ruiz, 19, moved in to the building two months ago. She paid $350 a month for a one bedroom apartment she shared with two friends.

"I just finished unpacking not that long ago," Ruiz said. "It's really stressful. It's stressful to try to find a place to go so quickly on such short notice."

Code enforcement inspectors assessed the building Thursday, and by Friday they deemed the structure unsafe.

"This building is in deplorable conditions," Code Enforcement Inspector Reinaldo Benitez said. "Floors that are caving in. Holes everywhere. Rodents. Roaches. It's in bad shape."

The property manager said she can't keep up with repairs because tenants don't pay their rent on time.

"There is no way we can pay this building," Sulay Rodriguez said. "I agree 100% to close this building. These people do not pay. They're delinquents."

City officials said "Operation Clean Sweep" was not designed to hurt the renters. City administrator Pablo Canton said it's about holding landlords responsible.

"It gets to a point where the city wants to send a message to all the slumlords, because I would say that this is a slum," Canton said. "We're not going to allow any slumlord to keep a building in this kind of shape."

Many residents were frustrated Friday afternoon. They said they paid their bills and had nowhere else to go.


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