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Troubled apartment complex gets new ownership, brings hope to some residents

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — New ownership is taking over the troubled Lakeside Pointe at Nora apartment complex in Indianapolis.

The City of Indianapolis, along with the Marion County Public Health Department, had previously filed a nuisance lawsuit after a number of health and housing violations at the complex.

Lora Driscoll lives at Lakeside Pointe at Nora. She says she’s fed up with the apartment complex.

“I keep complaining, but nobody comes to fix anything at all,” Driscoll said. “You can’t talk to management… you can’t call nobody. It’s just a really scary place to be.”

Driscoll has been living at the apartment complex for two years, dealing with mold issues in her bathroom and a broken kitchen faucet. She says that about two months ago, someone tried to break into her apartment. She now has a dog for protection.

“That was scary, to know that somebody could get inside of my apartment and nobody come to help me,” Driscoll said.

Genesis Housing Foundation bought the apartment complex on Tuesday. Genesis Housing says that, in working together with Elon Property Management, it is already beginning to invest the resources that are necessary to restore the safety, decency, and habitability of the property.

A paper was also shared with residents saying they will “be setting new contract with vendors and working with the property team to provide you with the excellence in service you deserve.”

“To have to live like this… it’s it’s degrading,” Driscoll said.

Driscoll says she’s not sure what to expect from the new owners, but she says she’s looking forward to the changes.

“I’m hoping that this new management that’s coming along here will get everything right because the people in here…yeah, there are a lot of bad eggs, but there are also a lot of good people,” Driscoll said.

MCPHD released a statement to News 8 about Genesis Housing Foundation: “GHF is aware of the open violations at this property (those violations transfer from the previous owner to the new owner) and MCPHD has communicated those violations and the deadlines, per our enforcement process, for bringing violations into compliance. It is the expectation for this owner, as it is with any owner, to bring violations into compliance within the timelines issued by MCPHD.”

“We are looking forward to working with the new property owners to make sure that the properties are remedied in ways that make them habitable for the residents and to correct some of the unfortunate set of circumstances that has befallen that property, so the fact that we threatened a lawsuit and got the old owners to see the light, we now have new ownership to work with,” Mayor Joe Hogsett said.

Hogsett added: “I am confident that in working with them we can rehabilitate Lakeside Pointe in ways that people will have decent, clean, safe, warm places to live.”

“There’s been a lot of communication; frankly, the fact that we have out-of-state landlords who operate somewhat callously from time to time, we are always watching that very carefully, but this is, I hope, the beginning of the ending of a bad story made good,” Hogsett said.

Genesis Housing Foundation released the following statement to News 8:

We are pleased to report that as of March 1, 2022, Genesis Housing Foundation, Inc. has acquired Lakeside Pointe at Nora Apartments.  Genesis Housing’s founders have extensive experience in both developing and rehabilitating market-rate and affordable multi-family properties.  Genesis Housing has no affiliation or connection with the former owners or management of Lakeside.  Genesis Housing’s mission is to provide high quality affordable housing, providing families with safe and well-maintained living quarters.

Like so many who have followed the stories concerning the unfair conditions that the residents of Lakeside have endured due to the declining and unacceptable state of the property and its abandonment by the former owners, Genesis Housing understood the need for new ownership and management to bring real relief to these families.  With advice and approval from the City of Indianapolis and Marion County Health & Hospital Corporation, Genesis Housing prepared an extensive and detailed rehabilitation plan and acquired the property.  Working together with Elon Property Management, Genesis Housing is already beginning to invest the resources that are necessary to restore the safety, decency, and habitability of the property.  

These plans include addressing and remediating the emergency and life-safety issues in occupied units together with an overall plan to build back the burned down buildings and address the deferred maintenance issues that have made Lakeside a blight and an eyesore to our city.  Residents and neighbors of Lakeside will be seeing rapid improvements as Genesis Housing and Elon Property Management begin to cleanup and rehabilitate the property.

Genesis Housing and Elon Property Management have successfully taken on other rehabilitation projects in Indianapolis with properties that were plagued by extensive lists of severe health code violations and poor living conditions.  Genesis Housing and Elon Property Management have made tremendous improvements to those properties and City officials have noted the greatly improved and still improving conditions at those properties.  

Understanding the challenges facing Lakeside and its residents, Genesis Housing and Elon Property Management will be using their resources and experience to bring much-needed changes that will include not only improving the conditions at the property but coordinating and delivering needed social services for the residents.  For your convenience, we have attached a welcome letter that will be delivered to all residents of Lakeside this week.  We appreciate the opportunity to respond to your inquiry and we look forward to continuing to work together to give Lakeside’s residents the service and respect they deserve as Lakeside becomes a place its residents are proud to call home.