January 17, 2020

Statement on 650 Parliament Street Re-Occupancy

Residents of 650 Parliament Street have finally been given a timeline to return home.

It has been over 18 months since residents of 650 Parliament were forced to evacuate their homes after a catastrophic electrical failure set fire to their building. 

This has been a long and emotional process for the residents who have had to contend with over a year of uncertainty and growing frustration. 

And so, it is with sincere relief that today, we learned residents have been given a firm re-occupation date starting March 02, 2020.

The Landlord has indicated that residents will be scheduled to move back into their homes at a rate of two-floors per week, starting from the top of the building, and working down. The process is expected to take about 11 weeks.  

My office will continue to work with residents and the Landlord to ensure that the return process is smooth and communicated effectively with everyone who has been impacted. I know residents will be eager to return home. I want to ensure that residents have all the necessary support from the Landlord and property manager they need. 

I expect that the cost of moving residents will be borne by the Landlord, after all the residents were displaced through no fault of their own. Additionally, opportunities for residents to pre-inspect their units prior to move in must be made available. Residents should itemize any missing items, and/ or deficiencies before final occupancy. 

Toronto Building staff have been reviewing the rehabilitation work that has been occurring inside 650 Parliament, and have ensured us that residents can return to a safe building. I want to thank Toronto Building and Toronto Fire services for their work. 

I also want to thank the first responders who attended the fire, and made sure everyone was evacuated safely. 

I mostly want to thank the residents of 650 Parliament for their patience, resilience and their commitment to their neighbours and their community. 

Although I extend my thanks to the Landlord for completing their work, I will continue to hold them landlord and the property management company responsible to ensure that the move in process is efficient, timely and well communicated. 

Robin Buxton Potts

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