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“It came down real quick”: Engineers assess damage after parking garage collapse

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Posted at 9:18 PM, Jul 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-21 23:09:33-04

BALTIMORE — The owner of a partially collapsed downtown Baltimore parking garage hired engineers to assess the building's damage.

The property at 1 E. Pratt Street is owned by Banyan Street Capital. Its parking garage partially collapsed Friday.

A representative told WMAR-2 News that once engineers determine the deck is safe to enter, they will provide a plan to remove the 50 cars still trapped inside.

The full statement sent to our newsroom read:

“Several engineering firms have visited the site to assess the situation and will provide a path forward. The cars within the garage will be removed once the team of engineers have provided a plan to move forward and the deck is safe to enter.” 

WMAR-2 News responded to the representative with follow-up questions. We asked if customers whose cars are trapped have been contacted.

We also inquired about a timeline and potential reimbursement.

So far, we’ve not heard back.

"It’s not surprising," said Scott McConnell. “There’s no contact. You can’t get them on the phone. I’ve tried emailing them. There’s no reply.”

McConnell saw the collapse last Friday. He’d just pulled in to the parking garage.

“I watched it come down,” he said. “It came down real quick.”

McConnell spoke to WMAR-2 News via Zoom, using his iPhone.

“The computer I normally use is in the car, which in the garage, which I can’t get to,” he said.

On Thursday, the garage was surrounded by a chain link fence. An MDOT supervisor was parked nearby to keep buses away from the structure.

While the chain link is for safety, McConnell says he sees it as a sign of something else.

“They’ve got it boarded up so tight,” he said. “It more or less says they are not going to do anything for a while. We’ve kind of been left in the lurch. I mean, they should at least reach out and say, ‘How can we help?’ I think it would be good PR for them.”

Right now Scott McConnell and the 49 other vehicle owners are left to wait.

As for the structure itself, it’s last inspection was in 2017.