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Buffalonians call out Dolphins owner over 'medieval' living conditions at downtown apartment complex

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Posted at 5:37 AM, Nov 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-15 15:27:04-05

BUFFALO, N.Y (WKBW) — The billionaire owner of the Miami Dolphins may naturally be disliked in Buffalo. But some neighbors living downtown have serious beef with Stephen Ross, over something that has nothing to do with football.

Ross' company owns the Pine Harbor Apartments on 7th Street, not far from Waterfront Elementary School and Niagara Square. People who live there and community advocates gathered Thursday to allege a multitude of problems in the apartment complex. They include:

  • rodents running rampant
  • roaches and bedbugs
  • holes in walls
  • water leaking into units
  • black mold

"We have people who have to live in conditions that are almost medieval because people like Stephen Ross want to profit off the pain and suffering of people in this country," said PUSH Buffalo Organizing Director John Washington.

PUSH Buffalo is working with the neighbors to try and improve living conditions. PUSH claims Ross received $6 million in subsidies when he bought the building. It was supposed to go towards stopping mice from getting in. According to PUSH, not making the fix is a violation of the warranty of habitability.

On Friday afternoon, a spokesperson from Ross' company, Related, issued the following statement.
"We are proud to have preserved Pine Harbor Apartments as affordable residences for over 30 years as part of our larger corporate commitment to create and preserve affordable housing nationwide having never converted a single unit to market rate and have no intention to do so. We take feedback from our residents seriously and encourage residents at Pine Harbor to report any concerns directly to the management office so we can swiftly resolve them."