Broken lift cause for irritation in student flat: “Popping to the shop is a full workout”

The staircase of the ARCH student flat

Broken lift cause for irritation in student flat: “Popping to the shop is a full workout”

Awaiting repairs for weeks, students are threatening to leave

19-03-2024 · News

MAASTRICHT. A broken-down lift has been causing inhabitants frustration for weeks at the student flat ARCH, part of the UM Guesthouse on the Annadal Campus. Some students have to take the stairs to the tenth or eleventh floor in order to reach their rooms and are threatening to leave. In the meantime, repairs have been postponed several times.

“If I want to wash and dry my clothes, I have to go up and down ten flights of stairs three times. So sixty stairs, a complete workout,” Paweł Maciejewski, a first-year student European Law School, sighs. He lives on the second-highest of the eleven-floor building, while the communal laundry room is on the ground floor. He also has to go up and down the entire building for other daily activities: going to lectures, popping to the shop or ‘just’ going out for a walk. “Very exhausting. You plan your whole day around it, to avoid the stairs as much as possible. Fortunately I am in good health and I can manage it, but the same won’t apply to everyone.”

The lift hasn’t worked since the 5th of March. And earlier this year, around Carnival, it was also out of order for two weeks. “We are also very unhappy with the situation,” says Maurice Evers, head of Maastricht Housing, which is responsible for UM Guesthouse. “We are discussing the situation with Xior, the owner of the building, who in turn points the finger at Otis, the supplier of the lift with whom they have a maintenance contract. But the latter has postponed the repairs multiple times. Either because a part was unavailable, or because there was a lack of staff. It is not easy to switch to another party just like that: most businesses only repair the lifts that they themselves have installed.”

Last Thursday, it was finally going to happen, but again the service engineer cancelled. “After applying pressure, Otis promised to send someone on Monday, but this did not happen either,” said Xior’s Dick Schotman. “We have now directed at management level that the lift must be fixed today, on Tuesday 19 March. We have still not received a reaction. Given the seriousness, we expect that Otis now has no other choice than to act in the very short term.”

Frustration among students is rising high. “I am looking for somewhere else to live, and I have heard from other inhabitants that they want to leave too,” says Maciejewski. Evers acknowledges this, but he says he hasn’t heard yet of any student actually leaving. “Nor about students who have problems due to physical complaints.”

In the meantime, 108 inhabitants of the Guesthouse have received the news that they will be given a hundred-euro reduction on their rent this month. “As a courtesy, to show that we don’t like the situation either,” says Evers. “But it doesn’t fix the inconvenience for students, obviously.

UPDATE: On Tuesday near the end of the afternoon, Xior informed Observant that the lift has been repaired by Otis.

Photo: Paweł Maciejewski

Tags: lift,elevator,arch,student flat,guesthouse,student housing,students,instagram

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