The developer of Sydney’s Opal Tower is calling for an explanation on what’s gone wrong with the disaster-plagued building, again telling residents it could be weeks before they can return.
Ecove director Bassam Aflak released a statement pushing its builder, Icon, to give the developer and residents answers.
Irate residents have been in temporary accommodation for nearly two weeks — since their initial evacuation on Christmas Eve — as specialists carry out investigations to determine what caused the building in Olympic Park to crack.
Mr Aflak said now that investigations were “hopefully” nearing completion, the developer required an explanation from Icon about the cause and remediation of the issue, as per the building contract.
He said Ecove was also looking forward to the NSW Government report on the issues, which he understood would be “available soon”.
“We believe Icon to be a capable builder; however, we want to know, like everyone else, what has happened at Opal Tower,” Mr Aflak said in a statement on Wednesday.
“We understand there are a number of apartments which require remediation work to return them to their original condition.
“We have been advised this may take a number of weeks and Icon will provide alternative accommodation options for those residents for the duration of the work. We’re still waiting on details from Icon on who is affected.”
Mr Aflak said Ecove was “sincerely sorry” about the ongoing disruption.
A “customer care team” has been set up to help residents move back in and ensure their apartments are returned to their original condition.
Earlier this week shocking new pictures revealed residents’ homes had been left in pieces.
Some of the grim photos posted on Facebook over the weekend showed how one unit had its ceiling and flooring torn away to allow equipment to prop up the concrete slabs separating each floor, as beds, furniture and clothing were tossed in a pile near a window.
Others showed wall panels torn out and ominous-looking wires dangling from the ceiling of another home.
“While we understand Icon will continue to help residents while they are out of Opal Tower, there will be other matters, both pastoral and practical, where we can hopefully help as people move back to their homes,” Mr Aflak said.
“Our focus continues to be ensuring the Opal Tower residents are getting all the care and support that can be provided.
“Ecove’s approach is to be as transparent as possible, within the limits of expected business confidentiality. We’re pushing as hard as everyone else for information on what’s happened, and for speedy rectification.”
Icon has not made comment so far today.
An independent investigation has found numerous faults with Opal Tower.
An interim briefing by two engineering experts, commissioned by the state government, has identified a number of problems in the building.
In a statement issued by the planning minister’s office on Friday, Professor Mark Hoffman and Professor John Carter said they had identified issues that would require further investigation.
That came after a preliminary investigation found no evidence of any issues with the foundations of the building.
“We are now able to focus our attention on these key areas to determine what has caused the issues,” the engineering experts said.
“We have also met with the engineers working on these matters and those who are working on the rectification proposals.”