Tenants ordered out: ‘They did me an injustice’

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A Near West Side residential hotel undergoing renovation must be vacated by noon Thursday under an emergency order from a Cook County judge who declared it a fire hazard.

Monday’s ruling by Circuit Court Judge Edward Harmening left the 19 remaining residents of the Rosemoor Hotel, 1622 W. Jackson, scrambling for new places to live.

“I think they did me an injustice,” Jerry Siggers, 74, told me Wednesday as we stood outside the building where he has lived the past 14 years. Siggers doesn’t know where he can go on such short notice.

Harmening issued his order to empty the building after city fire inspectors informed him conditions created by ongoing construction work at the building posed an extreme danger to the residents, as well as to firefighters.

You may recall that it was just a few weeks ago that I was telling you how the Rosemoor, owned by luxury car dealer Joe Perillo, had agreed to pay an undisclosed cash settlement to residents who had formed a tenants union and sued over conditions at the building and the tactics employed to remove them.

I figured that was the end of that story. Perillo told me at the time he would be moving full speed ahead with plans to fix up the former flophouse and take it upscale — for which he had already obtained the necessary permits before Mayor Rahm Emanuel imposed a six-month moratorium on SRO closings and conversions.

All but one of the residents involved in the settlement already have moved, but 18 other residents who never joined the tenants union remained in the building.

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