Boys and Girls Club happy to see progress at Richfield Court Apartments

Published: Aug. 26, 2021 at 6:06 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - (8/26/2021) - Progress has been made in securing the now-condemned Richfield Court Apartments complex in Flint.

The city stepped in after multiple reports of unlivable and inhumane conditions at the property. It turns out that the out-of-state landlord had practically abandoned residents, leaving the city with the mess and an unpaid water bill totaling more than a million dollars.

Eight months later, neighbors are finally feeling more confident the nuisance may be gone soon.

A gate is now up surrounding the property, an extra layer of protection against trespassers. And, the smelly, overflowing, rodent-filled dumpsters have been removed.

These are two of the final steps required by the city when condemning the complex in February.

“That process takes a lot of time, a lot more time than we would like to see,” said Tauzzari Robinson, CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Flint. “But I know the city is doing everything that they can to work through that process appropriately.”

For more than a decade, the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Flint has been a neighbor to the Richfield Court Apartment Complex.

“I mean you could definitely see it coming, and part of that is being there and seeing it every day and also being, you know, involved at the organization, you know, for over a decade, to be able to see the transition to where we are right now,” Robinson explained.

He spoke up several years ago, had conversations with the owner, but nothing happened.

Robinson’s biggest concern was several of the families they serve lived at the complex. The city and area partners have since relocated 80 tenants.

Robinson said that the owner living in Florida all of this time definitely didn’t help. But, he’s confident from his conversations with the Mayor, that this situation won’t ever happen again in Flint

“Going forward, understanding that you know, again families live in these properties and we want to make sure they’re going to receive the type of care and the type of support that they deserve,” he shared.

So what’s next for the property?

While the legal battle continues to play out in court, Robinson said it’s been quiet and didn’t impact any of their summer programs.

He’s also grateful the arson has stopped. Nearly every building was set on fire before the city put this fence up.

While there is no word yet on new ownership, Robinson has some ideas for how the club could use the space. He said even if they don’t get it, he wants to be a part of the conversation about the property’s future.

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