200 Wellesley North tower residents begin to return home

200 Wellesley North tower residents begin to return home

December 10, 2010

Toronto Community Housing will soon welcome home 144 North tower households forced from their homes at 200 Wellesley St. E. because of the fire on September 24, 2010.

"After a difficult ordeal, the first North tower tenants of 200 Wellesley St. E. are returning home. Toronto Community Housing has been working around the clock since the fire on clean-up, repairs and renovations and we are pleased that the first tenants of the North side of the building are heading home," said Mitzie Hunter, Toronto Community Housing's chief administrative officer.

Some apartments in the North tower are ready for residents to return home starting December 14.

Most apartments ready to be occupied are located on floors 1 through 12. These apartments have been cleaned, repaired and fully renovated if necessary.

Tenants will be joining the majority of South tower tenants who returned home within two weeks of the fire.

North tower residents with apartments on floors 14 to 30 will not be able to return home until the New Year. These residents live on the floors closest to the fire where there was significant smoke and water damage. These floors have been sealed off from the rest of the building.

Air quality testing is conducted every day throughout the building to ensure the air is safe to breathe.

"Toronto Community Housing is grateful to tenants who aren't able to return home. They have demonstrated tremendous patience and resolve. With the support of the City of Toronto, community partners, business partners and ordinary Torontonians, we will continue to support tenants through this time of transition," Hunter said.

Over the last 48 hours, Toronto Community Housing staff members have made personal phone calls to all North tower tenants to inform them about the status of their unit.

North Tower residents with questions about when they can move home can visit the Wellesley Information Centre (495 Sherbourne Street) or call the Tenant Hotline at 416-981-5520.

All tenants or occupants of 200 Wellesley St. E. at the time of fire are also eligible to participate in a voluntary compensation plan to assist them with losses and personal hardship.

Tenants who participate in the compensation plan are expected to receive payment within five business days of their claims being settled. Tenants are required to obtain independent legal advice before their claims can be processed.

Full details of the plan are available by visiting www.torontohousing.ca.

About Toronto Community Housing

Toronto Community Housing (www.torontohousing.ca) is Canada's largest social housing provider and home to more than 164,000 tenants with low and moderate incomes-about six per cent of the City of Toronto's population. Toronto Community Housing employs 1,400 staff in a broad range of jobs, who deliver its mandate to provide affordable housing, connect tenants to services and opportunities, and work, together to build healthy communities.