Leaky roof forces West Side Market store to close, tenants say pleas for help ignored

CLEVELAND - Heavy rains caused a wave of emotion at the West Side Market Monday after one business was forced to temporarily close because of a leaky roof.

Maria Mougianis wiped tears from her eyes and called the situation a disgrace while standing behind the closed register inside Mediterranean Imported Foods. She was standing near a picture of her father, an immigrant from Greece, who opened the business in 1968.

"I'm comparing how matters were taken care of 40 years ago and how they're taken care of now and they are not, the market is falling apart and it's a shame," said Mougianis.

The floors inside the store are soaked and filled with debris from falling plaster in the ceiling.

Gus Mougianis stood in a puddle inside the uncomfortably muggy store as he surveyed the damage.

"Every time it rains we get a flood here," he said, "We have to mop the floors, It's dripping in the back area where our sink is. It interrupts our business. I couldn't open the store because of the water. Water is still dripping."

The owners provided copies of documents sent to market management urging them to quickly fix a leaky roof they claimed was damaging their product. One service request document dated in May states the owners are "concerned about mold."

The Mougianis family says their anxiety was not taken seriously and they have yet to receive a response from market staff about this latest issue.

"I don't think they care," he said. "I mean they haven't done anything -- the city hasn't done anything."

West Side Market management, in addition to several spokespersons for the mayor's office, could not be reached for comment.

More West Side Market coverage.