JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Thursday was the deadline for the owners of a Westside apartment complex to get a waste hauler and pool service provider after a judge ordered the owners to address health and safety issues there.
The City of Jacksonville has yet to confirm if Colonial Forest Apartments off of Firestone Road met the requirements of an emergency temporary injunction approved by a judge last week, but News4JAX confirmed Thursday there are now dumpsters on the property and the pool looks like it’s in better shape.
The good news is that there are now multiple dumpsters on the property. The bad news, they are already overflowing and residents News4JAX spoke with called the recent efforts from the owner “the bare minimum.”
News4JAX drove through the complex and counted a total of four dumpsters on the property but all of them were overflowing.
“It’s ridiculous. They just need to do better,” said a resident who asked to remain anonymous.
The resident said she’s moving out of her apartment soon and called her current situation “unlivable.”
Court records show trash has been a problem on the complex since last year and the city first received complaints in Nov. 2022.
Dumpsters were removed last month and the waste hauler said the owner wasn’t paying for trash service.
“We’ve been paying for it for months. They charge us every single month yet they’re overflowing,” said the resident on Thursday.
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Repairs started Monday at the complex but the crews who mowed the lawns and fixed the condemned staircases were hired by the city.
The owner of Colonial Forest is responsible for contracting a waste hauler and pool service provider but residents are doubtful their situation will improve.
“It’s about time that they actually are doing stuff and bringing all the dumpsters back and I doubt they are going to pay for it again,” the resident said.
An attorney who has helped three tenants file lawsuits against the owner of Colonial Forest said his clients are seeking damages for the money they’ve paid for services they weren’t getting.
“Every month they paid for trash service and the service was not provided is a breach of the lease and the Florida Residential Landlord Tenant Act,” attorney Glenn Banner said.
The resident said that even if the pool and dumpster issues are resolved, there are other problems at the complex.
“There’s black mold in the apartments. A lot of people complain about rats, roaches, it’s trashy everywhere. There’s water damage in all of our apartments. I’ve put in requests for maintenance multiple times for leaks,” the resident said.
Some residents are still living in condemned units on the property while repairs are being made. One of the requirements of the injunction was for the owner to temporarily relocate tenants in condemned units, but they said management has not reached out to offer that.
City officials expect work to be complete on the condemned staircases early next week.
News4JAX once again tried to contact management on Thursday to ask questions about the issues but our call wasn’t returned.
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https://www.news4jax.com/news/local/2023/11/02/bare-minimum-dumpsters-finally-brought-to-westside-apartments-after-judges-order-but-theyre-already-overflowing/ Dumpsters finally brought to Westside apartments after judge’s order, but they’re already overflowing