Last September, Rosedale Ridge Apartments lost their Unified Government (UG) rental license because of black mold and unresolved maintenance issues resulting in health and safety issues (the rental license is currently under appeal).
After a series of inspections and appeals, HUD terminated their contract with the property for the same reasons. Since then, the residents have lived in uncertainty, unsure where they would be able to call home from month to month; and in frustration, with ongoing plumbing and electrical problems, apartment fires and carbon monoxide incidents and many unanswered questions.
We began working with the residents last fall to advocate for better housing conditions, facilitate communication between residents, HUD and the UG, and to document the ongoing issues on site. Our advocacy team, made up of Rosedale Ridge residents as well as neighborhood advocates, organized a series of public meetings with elected officials and representatives from the management company (Yarco), HUD and the UG to try to get clear answers on the future of the property.
Nine months later, it is finally coming to a resolution for the residents. On May 27 and 28, HUD will be hosting relocation meetings for the residents to explain benefits and the process, and in early June, most residents will be able to receive housing vouchers from the KCK Housing Authority. While nine months seems like a long time, Ed Manning, Director of the Kansas City Asset Management Division for HUD, quipped at a public meeting this spring when asked what took them so long that “I don’t mean to be sarcastic, but this is the federal government and actually this is pretty fast.”
For an in depth look at the story, we highly recommend listening to the coverage of Rosedale Ridge by KCUR reporter Eleanor Klibanoff, who followed the story and residents throughout the spring. Her report, which aired on Central Standard on May 19, provides a glimpse into the lives of Rosedale Ridge residents, and ties the situation there into housing issues around the Kansas City area. It is available online at: http://kcur.org/post/mold-rats-and-uncertainty-run-rampant-kck-housing-project
Note: We have heard from the owners, Creative Choice, that they plan to renovate the property and bring it back up to code. If that does happen, we will welcome the reinvestment in the property and hope that they are able to correct the issues that have been experienced for many years now on site.