TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A Troy restaurant donated food to the displaced Harbour Point Gardens tenants. The Iron Works restaurant prepped 70 meals on Sunday, after they learned the residents still had no steady source of food or kitchens to cook for themselves.
More than a month after deteriorating conditions at their apartment complex prompted the city to evacuate them, many people are still living out of a motel.
Harbor Point Gardens tenant Eric Spinner said they’re grateful to have a hot meal from Iron Works but more needs to be done.
“We’ve gotten some other donations from other people, but nothing like this. This is over the top generous,” said Spinner.
Restaurant Manager Deb Vincent says they regularly donate to the community and they felt the need to step in because they’re located just five minutes from the apartment complex.
“Some of those people are actually our regular customers. They were saying to Eric that they’re so excited to get food from here because they order from us regularly anyway so it’s always a pleasure and we really do believe nobody should go hungry,” said Vincent.
Vincent stressed the importance of helping the community and encouraged people to buy local.
“Local businesses care about local, across the board. This is our community,” said Vincent. “I will honestly say that spending your money with small local businesses like us helps us to be able to provide this kind of work.”
Iron Works has agreed to donate food again, Spinner said, but he says the mayor and city should step in to help.
“We can’t ask Iron Works to do this on a continuing basis. I understand that this is not only a burden upon their workforce, but it’s also a burden on their bottom line,” said Spinner.
He said the tenants are grateful for the food because they’re finally getting something tangible instead of lip service.
Tenants have voiced concerns during city council meetings and claimed their landlords never delivered on promises to provide meals for the duration of their motel stay.
Council President Carmella Mantello said she was told the same thing by property managers.
But Lexington Property Group Regional Manager Robert Howard disagrees.
“No food was promised– I can tell you exactly what was promised because I was standing there. We promised transportation if you did not own a car, we would get you to the motel, and they would have a place to stay until this was resolved at no charge to any tenant,” said Howard.
Spinner is frustrated by the slow movement and questions whether they’ll be home any time soon.
He said many people are concerned about gas prices because they live farther from work now and people are worried about how their kids will get to school next month.
“It’s not a good feeling to know that we have to go out and have our hands out begging for anything we can and that includes food, but it also includes a lot of other things we are trying to get. We need gas cards and gift cards for people,” said Spinner.
They’re hoping more people will step up to help them with donations since the city has not, he said, but for now they’re thankful to have a proper meal.
The property owners are ordered to appear in code enforcement court on Wednesday at 8:30 a.m.