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Two more weeks without an elevator for Finlandia's Koti building

Residents at Finladia Village's Koti apartment building have had to take the stairs for the past six weeks, due to construction to bring the building's aging elevator up to current standards.
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Due to ongoing renovations, the elevator in Finlandia Village's Koti apartment has been closed for since mid-July, and is expected to remain closed for two more weeks. File photo.
Residents at Finladia Village's Koti apartment building have had to take the stairs for the past six weeks, due to construction to bring the building's aging elevator up to current standards.

Finlandia executive director David Munch said planning started last year to renovate the 30-year-old building's elevator.

During upgrades to the elevator, which started in mid-July, it could not be in service, he said.

“Unfortunately, during the 1980s, when this building was constructed, only one elevator was put into it,” Munch said.

Finlandia's newer buildings have two elevators, but the second and third storeys in the Koti building have only been accessible by stairs since construction began.

The construction period was extended by three weeks when workers discovered the elevator's cylinder, which encases a piston, was off-centre.

“It wasn't acceptable to today's standards,” Munch said. “Which is why it had to be re-drilled.”

Only one company in Ontario, he added, is qualified to re-drill elevator cylinders in existing buildings.

That company was brought on board as fast as possible, and completion for the work is now about two weeks away, Munch said.

In the meantime, some residents with more limited mobility have had to stay with family members during the construction period.

Finlandia has had volunteers on hand to carry groceries and other heavier items for residents who live in the building's two top floors.

“We realize every week it goes on it becomes more of a hindrance to individuals who want to be more mobile,” Munch said. “A lot of residents are understanding and very co-operative.”

Linda Attfield said she worries about her 85-year-old mother, a resident in the building, who has limited mobility due to a hip replacement.

“Maybe there's nothing they (Finlandia) can do, but it seems to me there's always something that can be done to bring pressure to bear on the contractor,” she said.



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