Some residents still unhappy with new 309 E. Green apartments

By Nicola Crean

Some residents from the apartment complex at 309 E. Green St. were permitted to move in to their new Roland Realty housing Sept. 5, but not without additional problems to an already complicated situation.

Reech Wuliji, senior in ACES, said they were supposed to pick up their keys from the leasing office and move in at 1 p.m. Instead, he was forced to wait four hours until the building received occupancy permits.

“Everyone that was waiting was extremely pissed off and didn’t really understand why we had to wait so long,” Wuliji said.

Residents of floors nine to 14, the only ones completed, were allowed to move in, and had access to one elevator.

Wuliji said he decided to use the stairs to move his things into the apartment, located on the 12th floor, instead of waiting for the elevator to start working.

“I had a lot of mixed feelings when we were finally able to move in,” Wuliji said. “Our apartment is awesome, but it still is bare bones.”

He said a lot of furniture is still missing, such as bar stools and a coffee table, which was in their lease.

Like many of the tenants who were left without a place to live, Wuliji opted to live in temporary housing, available off-campus. Due to security issues, he and his roommates moved after a week.

“We moved into the I-Hotel for another week,” Wuliji said. “We had no kitchen so we had to eat out all the time. Since it was located off-campus and no bus service was offered, we had to drive and park on campus, which can be very expensive.”

Although the apartment company has not mentioned compensating residents for additional expenses, they have paid double the daily rent per apartment while the property has been under construction.

Brad Hoelzer, junior in LAS, said there has been a lack of communication with the apartment company despite weekly e-mails.

“We have not been terribly happy about the way in which Roland is dealing with the situation,” Hoelzer said. “If there was more communication between the two parties then we might be a little more understanding of the situation.”

Wuliji said since moving into the apartment, they have not been informed about when they will be receiving their furniture or when all the amenities will be completed.

“The value of our rent included the unfinished amenities, which doesn’t seem fair to be paying for when they are not ready,” he said. Wuliji said the amenities are what made the apartment building what it was supposed to be.

Esther Patt, coordinator of the Tenant Union, said residents were aware of what to expect from Roland Realty if the building was not completed on time since there was a separate clause on the lease.

“We try to caution students from taking the risk and signing a lease when the building is still under construction because more often than not the building is not finished on time,” Patt said.

In the lease for 309 Green, Roland Realty specifies that if the building is not finished within 60 days of the original move-in date, then either the tenant or the landlord can terminate the lease, which is not very comforting, Patt said.

Although this is not the ideal situation for residents, Hoelzer said he is still satisfied with his decision to live at the complex.

“We don’t regret our decision of signing our lease,” he said. “We got a tour of it and we were impressed by how the apartments has turned out so far.”

Calls made to Roland Reality were not returned.