7:30 a.m., July 29)
South sewer problem a potential financial sinkhole for
By Fred Sherwin
shoddy section of sewer pipe in Fallingbrook South is
causing no end of headaches for local homeowners and a
potential financial burden for city taxpayers.
section of sewer pipe in question runs under Sunland Drive
near Orchardview Avenue. When it was installed in the
early 80s it was surrounded by heavy fill which, overtime,
has eroded causing homes to sink creating uneven floors
and cracks in the foundation walls.
problem is so bad, the city agreed to purchase six townhouses
on Sunland Drive and two homes on Orchardview in 2009
after an engineering report confirmed the damage was caused
by the sewer pipe which was installed by the former township
of Cumberland prior to amalgamation. Now it appears the
problem has become more widespread.
least one neighbouring homeowner is suing the city for
compensation and another is considering taking legal action
after a private engineer confirmed the shoddy sewer is
causing their home to sink as well.
city has agreed to cover the cost of repairs, but only
after the homeowners have proved the damage to their homes
is the direct result of the sewer, obtained quotations
to repair the damage and arrange to have the work performed,
all at their own cost.
Joly lives in a townhome across the street from the homes
that were purchased by the city. She has a large crack
in her basement which appeared in 2002 and she has issues
with uneven floor tiles and a door that closes on its
own because the hone has tilted slightly.
contacted an engineering firm to identify the cause of
the problem and possible mediation with a neighbour. The
firm confirmed the issues are the direct result of the
nearby sewer, but unless the source of the problem is
fixed the homes will continue to shift once they're repaired.
The neighbour is now suing the city.
is not sure what to do, she only knows she has to do something.
Under normal circumstances her home would be worth about
$290,000, if she could sell it. Because of disclosure
laws she has a legal obligation to inform any potential
buyer about the problem with the sewer, making her home
the bigger question that needs to be asked is why hasn't
the city fixed the pipe when it knows the problems continue
to persist and are affecting more homes? So far the city
has yet to provide an answer.
the meantime, Joly and her neighbous are on the hook for
expensive engineering bills and hoping the city will fix
the problem once and for all and end their nightmare.
story was made possible thanks to their generous support
of our local business
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