Hillcrest condo fire victims remain displaced 1 year later as construction continues

Construction crews worked Friday at the Hillcrest Condominiums in Peekskill installing electrical wires and rain gutters.
They are rebuilding a portion of the complex that was destroyed during a fire Jan. 5, 2023.
"I believe it was 2 a.m., I was asleep and I heard knocking," recalled Collin Marcus, a homeowner displaced by the fire. "It was devastating."
Marcus is one of the 16 families who lost their homes that fateful day.
He has had to rely on the generosity of friends and family over the past year and is currently renting a place in Queens while also paying his mortgage.
Needless to say, it's been a hard year.
"It's been a transition," he said. "I miss the place, I miss aspects of the conveniences I once had."
The Ferrara Management Group manages the complex. President Robert Ferrara says the entire building had to be rebuilt from the foundation up.
"This is an enormous job to accomplish, especially in a reasonable time period," he said.
Ferrara said work is on track to be completed by late May or early June.
"So far, the interior, all the carpentry has been done, they are getting heat established in the building, and once that's done, we can start getting the sheetrock up," he said.
One new feature residents will find when they move back in is a sprinkler system that is no required under city codes.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.