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33-story Houston high-rise evacuated after pipe bursts, floor buckles

Houston Chronicle logo Houston Chronicle 8/12/2022 John Wayne Ferguson
© Yi-Chin Lee, Staff Photographer

Residents of a Houston high-rise building won't be allowed back into apartments until inspectors confirm the building is structurally sound, city officials said on Friday. 

The Royalton at River Oaks, 3333 Allen Parkway, was evacuated on Thursday night after water was found flowing through the lobby, according to the Houston Fire Department. Firefighters found that the building's floor had buckled because of a significant water main break, according to the fire department.

One of the building's walls was also structurally damaged, according to the fire department.

A building inspector from the Houston Public Works Department was sent to the building today, department spokeswoman Erin Jones said. 

Under city codes, the building's owners are required to hire an independent engineer to determine to inspect the building and to apply for permits for repairs. Until that happens, residents won't be allowed to stay in the building, Jones said.

"The building is going to remain closed until repairs are made," Jones said. 

It's not clear how many residents were evacuated. Harris County Appraisal District records list 231 people as condo owners at the building.

The building was constructed in 2003, according to appraisal district records.

john.ferguson@chron.com

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