Remediation work on Sydney’s beleaguered Mascot Towers can finally begin after unit owners agreed at a marathon meeting to pay a special $7 million levy.
But the vote, which came after 11pm and four-hour extraordinary general meeting on Thursday night, was not unanimous.
A majority of the owners of the complex’s 132 apartments voted in favour of the $7 million (plus GST) levy – rather rather than a previously estimated loan of $10 million that would have cost millions more in interest.
The money will be raised by apartment owners and will pay for stages one and three of the complex’s remediation work. They will begin paying instalments in October.
Resident Brian Tucker told the ABC it was an exhausting night.
“There’s a lot of people that are really financially stressed, people are just so distressed,” he said.
The total cost of repairs to the complex is now expected to top $10 million, but be less than $20 million.
It comes after residents were evacuated in mid-June due to cracking in the buildings’ primary support structure and facade masonry.
They have since been living in temporary accommodation, and will remain there for many more months yet.
Engineers investigating the cause of the problems told owners at Thursday night’s meeting that some residents might be able to return home in the new year.
They also presented findings from a report into what might have caused the cracking.
It is understood residents were given engineering advice that links the building’s issues to Aland’s adjacent development at 27 Church Avenue.
The ABC reported that Bayside Council staff had accompanied the Building Commissioner to the next-door site for an inspection on Monday.
Lawyers for the owners’ corporation and state government representatives were also expected to speak at the residents’ meeting.
Earlier on Thursday, residents were told the NSW government had agreed to extend rental assistance for the displaced residents by another six months, out to March 2020, subject to an agreed funding deed.
Aland has been contacted for comment.