DENVER — “Sign up for a hot shower”: That’s what students at the Auraria Student Lofts at 14th and Arapahoe streets are being asked to do after living without consistent hot water for two months.
“Hello, I was hoping to schedule a shower at the Curtis Hotel tonight,” Maura Lorden said as she picked up the phone to call to schedule her shower at the Curtis Hotel.
That’s the process Lorden, a sophomore at CU Denver, has to go through every time she wants to rinse off after a day of classes.
In mid-September, she and her three roommates thought it was just a problem in their unit. However, an email shared with Denver7 from the Auraria Student Lofts property revealed a larger hot water issue affecting the entire high-rise.
Two months later, the 125-unit private student apartments across the street from the Denver Performing Arts Complex no longer had consistent hot water.
“If you have 30 minutes between classes, you should probably plan on taking a shower then, as the more popular times are likely to be fully booked,” Lorden explained.
There was no hot water at the Auraria Student Lofts in Denver for two months. The students were asked to shower at the hotel
A Nov. 1 email to the building’s tenants said all necessary parts for a broken water heater had been ordered. It was also mentioned that the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment had set a deadline of December 11th for the repairs.
“If they fixed the problem around Dec. 11, it would be basically an entire semester without hot water,” said Kennady Macdonald, one of Lorden’s roommates.
In a statement, the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment told Denver7:
“DDPHE’s Residential Health team reviews and enforces city ordinances and residential property rules and regulations. Our housing health investigators have been working with Auraria Student Lofts on this issue for several months. DDPHE has received eight complaints about this property and our investigators have reported that the water temperature levels are below those required by the housing code [denvergov.org] and our rules and regulations [denvergov.org]. We take housing code violations seriously and on September 21st ordered the property brought into compliance with city codes and corrected this issue. The property submitted an extension request as it needed to order a custom-made part, which is expected to be delivered by December 11th. Because facility residents were provided access to alternative showering options, DDPHE granted the extension. This accommodation shares the building with the Curtis Hotel and residents of the Auraria Student Loft can use the shower facilities in empty rooms.”
Until the problem is resolved, all Lorden has left is the Curtis Hotel. She said she could sign up for a 30-minute hot shower at the hotel between 9 a.m. and 10 p.m. every day. The student lofts and hotel are on the same property, but the hotel is on the first 16 floors and students live on floors 17 to 30. However, they have different entrances.
“At this point, I would rather live in the dorms again,” Lorden said.
Macdonald said she works a job after class that doesn’t always allow her to check in on time to shower.
“I didn’t expect something like this to happen, and I didn’t expect it to last this long,” Macdonald said.
For now, it’s just a waiting game, Lorden said.
“I’ll never take a hot shower for granted, that’s for sure,” Lorden said.
Nelson Partners Student Housing manages the property. Denver7 reached out to us to find out why the repairs are taking so long, but we have not yet heard back.
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