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Miami building evacuated near site of deadly apartment collapse

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MIAMI — Residents of a Miami Beach building on the same street where nearly 100 people died in a condominium collapse were forced to evacuate Thursday night after officials determined the building was unsafe and ordered them to leave.

Miami Beach spokesperson Melissa Berthier said about 4 p.m. Thursday that the city planned to post an unsafe structure notice and order residents of the 14-story Port Royale building to vacate immediately. At around 5:00 PM, the condo board sent residents a mandatory notice to vacate by 7:00 PM, the Miami Heral reported.

Port Royale residents said officials from the City of Miami Beach informed them on Wednesday that the building needed to be evacuated, but that the message to leave immediately was not delivered until Thursday. WPLG-TV reported.

A report from the building’s structural engineer led to the evacuation notice of the 164-unit structure at 6969 Collins Avenue, which is currently undergoing a 50-year recertification.

The site of the Champlain Towers South condo building in Surfside, Florida, which collapsed in June 2021 and killed 98 people, is also located on Collins Avenue, about 2.1 miles from the Port Royale.

The disaster at the 12-story oceanfront condo building in Surfside drew the largest non-hurricane relief effort in Florida history, including rescue teams from across the US and even Israel to help local teams search for victims.

Engineers have recommended adding additional “shoring” to reinforce areas in need of repair in the Port Royale garage to support a damaged beam. Officials said they expected reinforcements to be in place within 10 days, the Miami Herald reported.

A number of Florida buildings have been evacuated or partially evacuated since the partial collapse of the Champlain Towers South condominium building in Surfside on June 24.

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