Berkley Court residents in Franklin being moved to hotel rooms as temporary solution to lack of hot water

Franklin 600 Campbell Avenue explosion (April 15)
Posted at 12:02 PM, May 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-04 12:02:34-04

FRANKLIN, Va. - Residents of the Berkley Court Apartments in Franklin are being moved to hotel rooms, giving them access to hot water for the first time since an explosion at the apartment complex.

Virginia-based nonprofit organization VCDC will pay for the expenses of the hotel rooms, meals and expense related to transportation, for residents who choose to relocate. The City of Franklin is also working to ensure children have access to rides to school.

Residents have the option to stay in their apartments, despite no hot water, with rent waived until hot water is restored. A shower trailer will remain on the property for residents who choose to use it.

As for a long-term solution to the lack of hot water, VCDC and the city are pursuing the idea of installing electric water heaters to replace the gas-fueled water heaters. Installation could begin as early as next week; however, regulatory consent to transition away from gas to electric could result in delays, as investigations into the explosion could continue for several weeks.

“We are encouraged to learn about the advancement in solutions to the lack of hot water at Berkley Court,” said Amanda Jarratt, Franklin City Manager. “We have been working closely with VCDC and the community’s management company Severn Properties, to discuss both short-term and long-term solutions. The city is committed to expedite anything that needs to happen and we are eagerly seeking the same from state agencies.”