Leak Plugged

Mental Health Association’s Construction Nightmare Cost $1.8 million

The Mental Health Association’s construction nightmare that’s rendered the parking lot for its new mixed-use building at 617 Garden Street a $1.8-million fix-it problem is now reportedly over. According to Annmarie Cameron of the Mental Health Association, the leak that made the lower level of its split-level parking garage unusable has been reportedly fixed. Since the building — home to 51 affordable apartments and office suites for the Mental Health Association — opened with great community fanfare 14 months ago, the association has been forced to pay $10,000-$12,000 a month to pump the water out. Cameron said they were still assessing how best to recoup the costs of repairing the leak and that several parties were involved. One of the problems, Cameron charged, was that the barrier installed to prevent the leak had been put in backward. Thus far, she said, the insurance provider has declined to reimburse the association. “They’re doing what insurance companies do best,” Cameron said. “They’re saying no.” Even with all the problems, Cameron said the new $27-million building still has managed to provide affordable housing and services to the mentally ill. Only the lower level of the two-level parking garage was affected by the leak, but that accounted for 70 of the structure’s 110 spaces. Cameron said none of the residents were denied parking, but many City Hall employees who rented parking space in the lower level were forced to seek parking elsewhere.

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