Residents at The Royalton in River Oaks displaced as crews work to repair condos due to water damage, officials say

HOUSTON – Residents at The Royalton, a high-rise condo in River Oaks, have been displaced due to water damage, according to a statement released by the property.

The Houston Fire Department responded to an automated alarm at the condo, which is located at 3333 Allen Parkway, on Thursday at 7 p.m.

The Royalton said the building sustained water damage, which occurred possibly from a burst underground fire standpipe.

HFD assessed the building and decided to have residents evacuate. HFD notified PWE Water Department and the City Building Department. On Friday, officials with Houston Public Works said they have sent a structural engineer on site to inspect the integrity of the building after the incident.

According to The Royalton, an architectural firm, Wiss, Janney Elstner Associates, had completed a preliminary assessment and declared the building to be structurally sound. The Royalton said, at no time, was the building’s structural integrity compromised.

On Monday, officials with COH Public Works said the Royalton has started working on clean up and repairs. It is expected to take at least two weeks to be completed. Repairs will have to be done and inspected before any residents will be allowed to move back in. There is no timeline on when residents will be allowed inside their condos.

The residents have been working with employees of the property to help retrieve their personal belongings, pets, medications, and more, according to The Royalton. Residents are being provided a list of hotel rooms at discounted rates for their convenience.

The Houston Fire Department is leading the investigation.

The Royalton released the following statement:

Early evening on Thursday, August 11th, one of Houston’s premier residential buildings, The Royalton at River Oaks, located at 3333 Allen Parkway, sustained a water damage event that started under the floor of the back lobby. From what we have been able to ascertain from engineering experts, a burst underground fire standpipe caused damage to the fire safety system.

After the Houston Fire Department initially assessed the situation and decided to evacuate the building, within hours the Royalton had engaged a globally respected engineering and architectural firm, Wiss, Janney Elstner Associates (WJE). By Friday morning on August 12th, WJE had completed a preliminary assessment and declared the building to be structurally sound.

It is important and regrettable to note that there has been some inaccurate information disseminated from the outset of this situation. Most notably, at no time was the building’s structural integrity compromised. Additionally, as City of Houston’s Public Works department and Councilmember Abbie Kamin noted, at no time did the City pull the Royalton’s occupancy permit.

The Royalton staff has worked around the clock assisting our residents in retrieving their personal belongings, pets, medications, and more. We immediately provided a list of hotel rooms at discounted rates offered to the residents for their convenience.

The Royalton is collaborating with the City of Houston’s Public Works department, the Houston Fire Department, category expert engineers and others to address all outstanding issues and we are determined to get our residents back home as soon as possible. Safety is our highest priority, and we are committed to doing whatever it takes to ensure the well-being of our residents.

We wish to thank Councilmember Kamin, Fire Chief Sam Pena and Houston Public Works for their leadership and engagement and we especially want to thank our dedicated Royalton staff for their tireless efforts. We will provide additional updates as circumstances warrant.


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