Beachside condos still uninhabitable months after Irma

Article Courtesy of Bay News 9
By Angie Angers

Published January 31, 2018


HOLMES BEACH -- It's been a long and frustrating four months for ten families living in the Cayman Cay condo community in Holmes Beach. Damaged condos in Holmes Beach are still uninhabitable. Since Hurricane Irma ripped through the Cayman Cay community only minimal work has been done, leaving mold to grow inside.

When Hurricane Irma ripped through in September, the roof of one of the neighborhood's two buildings was torn off, letting inches of water in. Since then, minimal work has been done on the damaged units, leaving mold to grow inside.

Irene Macmacin's family has owned one of the damaged units since the early 1970s. The family would travel to Holmes Beach yearly from their New Brunswick home to spend time down by the beach. To her, the condo was not just a place to stay, but a place filled with memories.

Macmacin says she was devastated to hear that three inches of water had rained into her winter home during the storm. While some of her possessions could be saved, residents of the nine other units were not as lucky.

All of the condos had to be gutted due to mold issues, meaning the process of fixing up the building was an expensive one that could take months.

"I mean, what can you do?" Macmacin said. "You just gotta find out what's to come what has to be done. And my son's taking care of that. I think he was hoping it would begin a little earlier to be repaired."

Minimal work has been done on the damaged units at Cayman Cay in Holmes Beach, leaving mold to grow inside.

The demolition work inside each of the units just started last week. The first sight of work trucks and crews was a big relief to many of the residents.

The holdup was largely due to who would cover the extensive costs associated with the repairs. Residents in the community say that FEMA's 50 percent rule also played a part in the delay. The rule requires that a building be brought into current code compliance if the repair costs are more than half of the structures value.

Macmacin says she's happy work has begun and hopes to be back into her condo by next winter.

Bay News 9 reached out to the Holmes Beach Building Department but has not yet received comment.