Wednesday, August 10, 2011

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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

My Journey to find handicapped housing

About 14 years ago, I became an amputee.  It sure was a hard thing to get used to, in the beginning.  I was without a prosthetic for a couple of months, so mobility was an issue for me at that time.  Eventually, I received my first prosthesis and found my freedom back.  Although any time my prosthetic needed fixing or if I had sores on my stump, I would have to go back to using a wheelchair.  This was difficult to do ,at the place I lived, but I managed fairly well.  I knew eventually, I would have to do something about finding myself a place that was handicapped accessible, and my search started for a handicapped accessible place.  I phoned a few real estate agents , told them what I was looking for.  I had no success.  There just wasn't anything out there for me.
Fast forward to 2006.
One evening, I received a call from a real estate agent asking if I would meet with her .  We set up an appointment to meet at my house.  We met and she told me about this place in Stony Plain that was going to be built, and the developer then called Copperwolf development was interested in building a handicapped suite for me.  I was ecstatic .  She had brochures with her and I instantly fell in love with the place, even though she just had the plans.  She told me the price was 199999 and  I jumped at the chance and excitingly gave her a deposit.  A new place and no worries if at anytime I would end up in a wheelchair.
Fast forward to 2008
September 2008, our handicapped unit was finished.  We had to wait a long time for this day.  I dont know why it took so long but from 2006 to 2008 the name of the developer kept changing.    The name kept changing but the principal players didnt change and to this day the same players are still playing.
On September 28th , 2008 I moved into my new condo.  Of course there were a few things that still needed to be done but I had faith that that would happen .  Every unit by law has to have two doors to be able to go outside.  I do have two doors.  The back door and the patio doors.  To my dismay the pation door was not handicapped accessible, was told not to worry they had a door at their project in Radium, and they would eventually bring it to Stony and change the doors.  As of right now, June 28th, 2011, that door is still in transit.  Therefore  my life is at risk when I have to use my wheelchair, I  could never get out if I had to use the patio door.  And if I could use the patio door, another obstacle is in the way.  I could never wheel my self through the grass to my car or get away from any kind of danger.  Never mind the patio door lets go to the other door.  If I would be in a wheelchair coming home,  I could not get into my unit through the other door.  You see the walk slants up and there is no railing against the building for me to use to get up.  I was tol,d that they would put a handrail up, but that never happened.
Now, lets go to the kitchen.  Is that handicapped accessible?  Nope.  If I am in my wheelchair I wouldn't be able to use my kitchen at all.  I dont even want to go into that at all.   There are other issues in regards to this unit being handicapped accessible.  Lets just say that if I ever  end up in a wheelchair I have a big problem.  I would have to sell my handicapped accessible unit,  and find something else.  Took me 10 years plus to get this one.
Now we will visit my handicapped accessible bathroom.  It looks just like I wanted it to look. The shower I ORDERED was put in and I was happy.  Until one day, a nice man (who was handicapped himself) came to my door.  He asked me if I could tell him where the people were who were in charge of the project.  I told them they were all gone and I had not seen a soul.  He began to tell me he had never been paid for the shower and the cost of installation.  I was floored.  I told him that I had paid  for the shower when I paid for the condo unit.  He said that he was not paid.  And because I had ordered the shower  I was responsible for it.  I felt robbed.
There was a brief light at my dark tunnel.  After the construction company who was in charge when I moved in  left in November 2008, things went eeerily silent at Graybriar Greens.  Nothing happened for a long time.  I send letters to the people in charge of this project and told them about my plight.  I heard nothing.  Send registered letters, emails etc. No answers.  No matter what I tried ,no one would get back to me.  Finally, we saw signs of life and it looked like maybe someone could help me after all  the name of the developer changed to Graybriar Land Companym but the investors were still the same people and still at this time are the same people.
There was a new construction company who was going to finish the projectm great!  Things are looking up.  Maybe this company could help me.  I spend some time talking to him and told him my story and he was willing to do some things for me.  I had let him know that it was awfully dark and that I had trouble seeing where I was walking.  At the time, I had cataracts so it was tricky to walk from my car to my door, especially in the darkness of winter. He said, he would put some solar lights in for me, so that it would be easier to see where I was walking especially in the middle of winter.  You see when things are not smooth with a prosthetic it is scary to walk.  It would have helped, if their was a railing to hold onto.  The man I talked to said to me  “ I should sell this unit and buy one from him in the phase he was going to finish and my problems would be solved”, I couldn't believe my ears.  I am still waiting for the solar lights.  And for that matter we are still waiting for any kind of lights along the fence.  It is eerlily dark and this invites crime to our project.  We have already experienced some crime where the law had to be called. And not just petty crime.  I could go on but I have come to realize nothing ever will be done for me.
This brief discription of my problem with the developer probably will never be solved.  I have thought about how I can get this out to people who need to hear my story. But I am still hoping some of the things in my non handicapped suite can be fixed.  Butm after almost three years , I doubt that will ever happen.  But this shows why I am so so angry with the people in charge around here.  You see the name might be changed but the same players are still around.  And I ask you,where are your morals.
Other deficiency that were never taken care of.
My second bathroom  at the time of moving in needed a new piece of arborite because it was damaged.  Never done.
The vanity needs to be replaced.  It was to big  so they just hacked off a piece and tried to finish it. Never done
The unit is not sound proof at all.  Apperently something is missing between us and the neighbours on top.  We were told it was sound proof.  It is so noisy we can here our neighbours when they are going to the bathroom.  Yes you read that right.