Failure to fix safety concerns at Canton apartment results in loss of HUD funding

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A ceiling within an apartment unit at Victory Square apartments. (Photo: Jordan Miller)
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An 81-unit apartment complex spanning three locations on Lippert Road and 15th Street NE in Canton is set to lose its HUD funding due to ongoing safety concerns, marking a significant development for the Victory Square Apartments.

In October of 2023, JMN reported on the dire conditions at the complex, shedding light on the unacceptable living conditions faced by its tenants. Jordan Miller, during an investigative walkthrough, witnessed firsthand the deplorable state of the buildings that rendered them nearly unlivable.

The decision to revoke HUD funding stems from the owner’s failure to address the hazardous conditions jeopardizing the safety of the tenants. An initial report obtained by JMN in the fall detailed a laundry list of violations, including water-damaged walls, missing walls in bathrooms, leaks behind and under bathroom sinks, and an inadequate plumbing system. The non-compliance with code standards resulted in substantial water damage throughout the complex, further worsening living conditions.

Critical issues identified during inspections revealed the dire state of the plumbing and heating systems, leaving residents to endure malfunctioning heating systems amid the harsh Stark County winters. Basic safety measures were also found lacking, with improperly installed smoke alarms—a fundamental requirement for any residential building.

As a consequence, residents of Victory Square Apartments are faced with the need to secure alternative housing. HUD has assured them of receiving vouchers to aid in relocation, but as of the latest update, residents report not having received them.

HUD’s termination of the contract with Victory Square amounts to a monthly loss of $31,000, according to official documents. The complex’s future now hangs in the balance as residents grapple with the uncertainty of finding new homes amidst the termination of vital financial support.