The Watervliet Charter Township Department of Building and Zoning Administration in partnership with the Watervliet Fire Department’s Chief, William Whitney, condemned the Fairfield Inn and Suites by Marriott in Watervliet for violations.
A sign that was posted on the door on Thursday, Jan. 26, 2023, states that the building has been condemned and is unfit for use. With this citation of condemnation, the hotel can’t be rented or occupied until all the infractions have been remedied.
This comes after the Fire Department and the Building and Zoning Department had been trying to work with the building’s management over the ongoing violations over the last 30 days without resolution.
Upon inspection, the property was found to have no working fire alarm devices and the fire alarm panel was not connected to a monitoring company, thus jeopardizing the lives of hotel occupants in case of fire. The building had been under a mandatory fire watch since the discovery.
Hotel and motel fire alarm systems often need to incorporate safety control functions such as elevator recall, sprinkler system connections, and sleeping room ADA-compliant visual appliances. While most commercial occupancies do not have provisions for smoke detection, hotels, and motels have requirements for both smoke alarms and smoke detectors, and the hotel located at 8258 Arndt Blvd. were found to be faulty.
Dilapidated or unsafe buildings are often subject to condemnation to prevent harm to occupants or neighboring structures. Local, state, and federal housing codes and safety standards are applied to any given building, and if the condition of the building violates these then the property may be subject to condemnation as it was in this case.
With the public’s safety in mind, the Watervliet Fire Department and the township’s Building and Zoning Department had no other choice but to condemn the building.
The hotel is registered to All City Hospitality, LLC and SHA Investments, LLC, and the representatives were immediately on site to remedy the problems. One of the spokespersons stated that the company, CertaSite has been hired to look into this problem. The spokesperson is hopeful that the hotel will be back in full operation within days. He also told the Tri-City Record’s correspondent that they hope to call all former employees back as soon as possible.
CertaSite offers industry-trained experts that ensure that fire protection systems stay compliant and up to code, through maintenance, inspection, installation, and service. The business headquarters is in Indianapolis and the Kalamazoo location’s commercial vehicles could be seen at the hotel just days after the notice was posted.
The building will remain with this status until all fire alarm and control systems, as well as any other defective and inoperable equipment on the premises, have been taken care of. The Chief Building Official of Watervliet Charter Township and the Fire Chief of the Watervliet Fire Department will be the ones to lift the restrictions when the premises are checked in a follow-up inspection and deemed fit for inhabitants.