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Miami-Dade Housing Flagged In Audit After Surfside, Latin America’s Connection To The Tragedy

Miami Herald
Damage at the Champlain Towers South condo in Surfside, 8777 Collins Avenue, after the early morning collapse in Surfside, Florida, Thursday, June 24, 2021.

On this Tuesday, June 29, episode of Sundial,

Miami-Dade Housing Flagged In Audit After Surfside

Two buildings, owned by Miami-Dade County, have been identified for building concerns in an audit six days after the collapse of the Champlain Towers South Condo building in Surfside.

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The list of buildings with violations was released Monday and included 24 housing buildings with structure violations, after not securing the required recertifications after 40 years.

“This is not yet a comprehensive audit,” said Doug Hanks, the Miami Herald's county government reporter. “I do think it’s interesting that the property owner with the deepest pockets in Miami-Dade County, which is the county government, shows up on this list quite a bit in terms of owners of buildings that haven’t been able to get their 40-year recertification in time.”

These are the two county buildings that were flagged in the list:

  • The Little River Plaza public housing complex on the 8200 block of Miami Court. It was built in 1970 and cited in 2015 for overdue parking lot lighting fixes it needed.
  • The Ward Tower 1, which was also built in the 1970s and is located off the 5300 block of Northwest 23rd Avenue. The Miami Herald reports it was cited with a recertification violation in March of this year. No further details were available.

The county ordered the emergency audit after last Thursday's building collapse.

Miami-Dade Housing Flagged In Audit After Surfside

Latin America’s Connection To The Tragedy

From South Florida to Latin America, and around the world, families are mourning after the Surfside condo collapse.

Another person was found in the rubble yesterday, raising the known death toll to 11, with 150 people still missing.

Tim Padgett, WLRN’s Americas editor, has been collecting stories of those who have been lost and the condo community’s strong ties to Latin America.

Sophia López Moreira, the sister of Paraguay’s First Lady, is among the missing with her husband and their three children. Read their story here.

The family’s nanny, 23-year-old Leidy Luna Villalba who was also a nursing student, is also missing. Read her story here.

“I think it's important that we really do put a human face on these South American condo residents,” said Padgett. “They weren't just condo buyers, over the years they've also become a very important part of our community. And I think, for example, talking with people like Sergio Barth about his family I think really helps us do that.”

Barth is from Colombia. His brother, Luis Fernando Barth is one of the missing along with his wife and teenage daughter. Read their story here.

Latin America’s Connection To The Tragedy

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Leslie Ovalle Atkinson is the lead producer behind WLRN's daily magazine program, Sundial. As a multimedia producer, she also works on visual and digital storytelling.