More drama regarding the 58-story Millennium Tower's unexpectedly severe, uneven lean: The Department of Building Inspection filed two notices of violation for the building, citing unpermitted repairs to a garage and ground-floor ramps seemingly made to address ramifications of the structure's highly public Achilles heel. Further, the Chronicle reports that Building Inspectors discovered spalling and leaking in the garage area despite the repairs.
The building's owner has been ordered to apply for permits for the work that's already been performed while submitting a report on the state of the garage walls. As for the ramps, now steeper than the maximum allowed slope with handrails out of compliance: “The ramps would not have been at that slope at the time of final inspection [in 2009]," Daniel Lowery, a Building Inspector, tells the Chronicle. "It appears that they have been altered without a permit.” Changes must be made within 90 days.
The Millennium Tower Homeowners Association "assumed that any necessary permits were being properly pursued by Millennium Partners," a spokesperson said, assuring the Chronicle that "[They] are getting the necessary permit for the garage repair today."
A spokesperson for developer Millennium Partners said that issues like these "commonly arise with large buildings," adding that they "will ensure that all proper permits are secured.”
Millennium resident Jerry Dodson characterized the ramp repairs as "decidedly suspicious," telling the Chronicle that "The real reason was Millennium Partners wanted to cover up that the building was sinking on the tower side and not on the other side." Such reasoning might suggest that no permits were obtained in order to keep mum over building concerns.
Meanwhile, Supervisor Aaron Peskin continues lancing at the tower, asking at his second hearing on the building's construction why plans for a similar structure were scrapped due to concerns while the Millennium Tower project was permitted to proceed. "In 2004, the city's building officials said no to an almost identical project just a few hundred feet away," ABC7 quotes the supervisor. "Everyone knew that 301 Mission was suffering from all the same geotechnical problems that 80 Natoma was suffering from," he also told the channel.
"Interestingly, some of the geotechnical engineers used in that project were the same geotechnical engineers used here," he further alleged, inviting a new change to procedure. From now on, consultants hired by developers cannot participate in peer reviews of new buildings, building inspection officials have declared. Instead, consultants hired by the city will make up the entire panel.