Residents at a Columbus senior apartment complex want the federal housing officials to investigate what they believe is mold continuing to grow in some top-floor apartments and a utility closet, even after the complex owners said they have fixed the problem.

About 75 people live in Central Park Place Apartments, 1500 13th St., which was built about four years ago and has 60 apartments for people age 55 and older. The building is owned by the Miller-Valentine Group, which has offices in Dayton and Cincinnati, Ohio.

In late August, one of the residents, Lora Sites, was told a resident on the third floor of the complex entered what is called an environmental room, which has a furnace and other mechanicals and a trash chute to drop trash bags to the basement.

As the residents were putting garbage bags in the chute, they noticed a smell and saw “black stuff” on the wall near the furnace, Sites said. More investigation determined that a similar substance was around bathroom registers in some of the apartments and some of the registers were dripping water in addition to being covered with the substance, she said.

Most people originally had thought it was mildew, but now are concerned that it is mold, Sites said.

Diana Patterson, the community manager for the complex, released the following written statement Sept. 29 in response to the complaints:

“The management team at Central Park Place was made aware of a patch of mold in the trash chute closet and immediately and properly cleaned the area. A certified HVAC contractor was brought in to find and repair the leak, thus eliminating the potential for this situation to reoccur. The Housing Authority of the City of Columbus, as well as the Bartholomew County Health Department inspected and approved the repair. Our company has a strong inspection and prevention program, and always responds quickly to maintenance and safety issues.”

For more on this story, see Saturday’s Republic.

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Julie McClure is assistant managing editor of The Republic. She can be reached at or (812) 379-5631.