ICON, the Builder has pledged compensation and put on extra staff to handle residents’ concerns on a case-by-case basis.
-displaced residents given the option of a hotel, serviced apartment or the flexibility to find their own accommodation
.residents stood to receive $220 – $500 per night; related to the size of their apartment
ECOVE, the Developer promised to provide a daily allowance of $120 per person to cover meals and other out-of-pocket expenses, like spoiled food in fridges.
ECOVE Director Bassam Aflak having spent the week hiding behind strongly worded press releases which blamed Icon, Mr Aflak today offered an unconditional apology.
BECAUSE all Professionals, Trades, Suppliers, Labourers … all work for the Developer!
Dogs, toys, a washing line and a cat in a cage.
These are some of the things residents from Opal Tower took with them on Friday as they evacuated their homes for the second time in five days.
But as the outside temperature rose, tempers cooled.
Residents were more philosophical compared to the heated scenes on Thursday when news broke of the unexpected evacuation.
Building company Icon pledged compensation and put on extra staff to handle residents’ concerns on a case-by-case basis.
Displaced residents were given the option of a hotel, serviced apartment, or the flexibility to find their own accommodation. Those who chose the latter option stood to receive between $220 and $500 per night depending on the size of their apartment.
On top of that, Ecove promised to provide a daily allowance of $120 per person to cover meals and other out-of-pocket expenses, like spoiled food in fridges.
It took four days for Ecove director Bassam Aflak to speak publicly. After spending the week hiding behind strongly worded press releases which blamed Icon, Mr Aflak performed a U-turn on Friday, offering an unconditional apology.
Japanese engineers were flown in to help identify the problem and propose a solution, which remains days, if not weeks, away.
Opposition Leader Michael Daley made another appearance – his second in three days – criticising the Premier for her absence during the crisis.
Late on Friday a spokesman for Gladys Berejiklian said she had been following the issue “very closely” and promised to apply the ”full weight of the law” if necessary.
As the temperature at Olympic Park reached a stifling 35 degrees, residents battled the heat as they wheeled suitcases and wrangled children. One resident quipped she hoped her hotel had a pool.
Departing Opal Tower on Friday with a washing line tucked under his arm, resident Qi was upbeat.
“I think everything will be good,” he said.
When the building re-opens, Qi said he was unsure about whether to return permanently or find another home.
“We will reconsider in these 10 days. My family recommends us to move out, but we think it’s OK.”
Others disagree and plan to break their lease to move out as soon as possible. Owners, concerned what the debacle has done to the value of their properties, will spend the next few days mulling possible legal action.
Josh Dye is a news reporter with The Sydney Morning Herald.