Update on Franklin Towers Power Restoration – Friday, September 16, 2022
As of Friday, September 16, electricians are close to restoring full power to apartment units on floors 7-16 of Franklin Towers. Electricians and engineers have been working tirelessly to restore power as quickly and as safely as possible. After procuring the necessary electrical components needed to restore full electricity, electricians today installed a connection around the 9th floor damage caused in the bus bar which delivers electricity to the units on the 7th through 16th floors. In an abundance of caution however, they will be conducting extensive safety testing before attempting to restore electricity flow. This will take until Tuesday to complete.
The electrician has been working with city inspectors who agree to this prudent approach to assuring that the lightning did not corrupt any other portion of the bus bar, which has not yet been detected.
Unfortunately, the storm coincided with a previously initiated upgrade of Franklin Towers’ two elevators. One is complete and the other is still down for upgrades. To be clear, the elevator is being modernized, not repaired, and is due to be completed and inspected in early October. We understand the delays this has caused are frustrating; we are moving as quickly as we can to accelerate the process, but safety is paramount.
While power should soon be restored to all units in Franklin Towers, there is a chance testing will reveal more extensive damage from the lightning strike on August 26, and a permanent system repair or even replacement may be necessary before full power can be restored. While we cannot rule out future short-term interruptions as testing and interim repairs continue, we are committed to mitigating the disruption for our residents.
We will communicate important updates through door-to-door notices, the building’s PA system, porthouse.org, and email and text message alerts, which residents can sign up for here. We will continue to partner with Preble Street to provide onsite meal service. PHA has already provided grocery gift cards to replace lost food, made some short-term housing accommodations for residents with medical conditions and we are planning a rent concession to be determined once full power is restored.
Portland Housing Authority thanks all its staff, volunteers, electricians, engineers, inspectors, and most of all, residents for bearing through this challenging situation. Our absolute priority has been and will continue to be resident safety.
Cheryl A. Sessions
Portland Housing Authority
14 Baxter Boulevard, Portland, ME 04101
Tel: (207) 773-4753 Ext. 8223