Taking Action

Henrico family staying in hotel while awaiting answers on unexplained hole found beneath condo

Taking Action

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A family of three were forced out of their home and have been staying in a hotel for the last week after a massive hole appeared beneath their condo in Henrico County.

Alesia and Derek Williams returned to the Westshire on Parham Condo complex last Thursday to find a massive hole in the club house beneath the condo they own. The couple spoke with 8News as they wait for answers from their housing association, who already claimed responsibility for fixing the issue.

Workers began fixing the hole Thursday after 8News spoke with the housing association’s agent and looking into the matter the day before. 8News submitted a public records request to learn more as what caused the hole to form is still unclear.

“The building, it started to sag some cause inside you can see cracks forming on the wall,” D. Williams told 8News. “The county has said it’s a drainage issue.”

Williams’ neighbor snapped photos for the couple to use.

“It just make you feel like something fishy is going on,” D. Williams said.

Henrico officials told 8News that concerns about the building collapsing forced the county to quickly condemn the condo.

“They said ‘you can go in and get some things and get out,” A. Williams said, “but if you hear any cracking or anything, make sure to get out.'”

The couple and their 12-year-old daughter have been staying in a hotel ever since.

“We’ve been displaced since Thursday,” D. Williams explained.

The family’s housing association’s agent, Charles Small, said the HOA is responsible for fixing the damage. Small refused to speak on camera but did answer when 8News asked why the repairs have taken so long. At first, Small told 8News that he had trouble finding an engineer, then said things are moving quickly.

“Every time we’d try and get some head way with this,” D. Williams said, “we’d get the run around, we’d get passed to the next person.”

Small said the county has been too cautious and despite the inspector’s order to stay out, he insisted that the Williams family could move back in.

“If the county is telling you that it’s not safe for someone to be here, especially with a gas meter right there, electrical lines right there,” D. Williams told 8News. “You’re putting people’s lives at danger.”

The couple said they want a copy of the engineer’s report but the HOA has yet to give it to them. Until then, the Williams family can’t file a claim with their condo owners insurance and are footing the hotel bill.

Stay with 8News for updates to this developing story.

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