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Crestview Towers Residents Slowly Gather Their Remaining Belongings After Evacuation Order

A man stands outside an apartment building fence with police tape and police cars in the parking lot
Shianne Salazar
Bradley Fanfan waiting to be let into his former home at the Crestview Towers in North Miami Beach

Residents of the Crestview Towers in North Miami Beach began returning to the building Monday to recover their belongings. The city ordered the property closed and evacuated everyone July 2, after concerns over the condo association’s 40-year recertification report. Residents had to make an appointment in advance in order to enter their former homes.

U-Haul trucks and North Miami Beach police parked outside the building to assist the dozen or so residents that returned to the condemned building. The feelings of anxiety and uncertainty were palpable as frustrated tenants struggled to accept their new realities.

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Bradley Fanfan lived in Crestview with his mother for about 19 years. He waited behind caution tape to be let into the building because his name was not on the list of residents approved to enter — even though, he says, he called Crestview management the night before.

“It's devastating and just frustrating that people had to be moved out of their homes,” said Fanfan. “People are in a position where they're being [put] out on the streets, being homeless in the shelters, sleeping in their cars.”

Fanfan was eventually granted entry to the building to retrieve his possessions. Residents like Fanfan worked to gather all of their belongings, aside from furniture, which they can’t bring to their temporary home in a hotel. The building's 300 residents now wait and hope that the building will be deemed safe for residency soon.