Management Report: August 2019

Posted on Thu, 08/01/2019 - 12:00pm

By Violette Deschamps, Malibu East Manager

Office Hours CIGARETTE OFF BALCONIES: A few residents are tossing their cigarette butts or flicking ash over their balcony railing. The unfortunate residents living underneath and building staff cleaning the fourth-floor deck inherit the butts and ashes, which are certainly unwelcome. Further, cigarette butts may end up on outdoor furniture and dry plants, which as a result may ignite a fire or burn the affected surfaces. Please be reminded to put out smokes in ashtrays instead of throwing them from balconies.

WATER OFF BALCONIES: A few residents are watering their plants, and/or washing their balconies, and/or washing dog potty pads and/or cat litter boxes, paying no attention to the runoff water that flows over and onto the balconies below. Several balcony walls and floors have been recently stained by water running off planters in which rotten bulbs tainted the water with brown dye that ended up on the fresh paint of balconies below. There are fewer extreme situations with water running off balconies, such as leaving dirty, soapy water on balconies below. However, it is aggravating for the residents receiving any runoff water. The wastewater leaves puddles of water on balconies and furniture below, and sometimes people, aggravating those residents. Living in a high-rise building has great advantages but also entails some discipline, empathy and courtesy to make the community a harmonious and desirable living environment.

RECYCLING BINS: We purchased additional six-gallon blue recycling bins. Stop by the Management Office to pick one up. They are made of sturdy plastic with an opening facing you and equipped with a white handle that makes it easy to carry. They can usually be placed under the kitchen sink. No more need for bags to collect your recyclables.

COMCAST: The switchover from USA Wireless and HiPoint to Comcast will likely happen on or about Sept. 1. Meanwhile, Comcast will host several events to answer your questions about its services, access to your units for the installation of its equipment, and the logistics of the changeover. Here is the event schedule communicated by Comcast:

  1. Comcast hosted educational sessions on July 23 and July 25, with presentations by a Comcast representative and Q&As with the residents.
  2. Marketing materials for these events were provided by Comcast. They will be posted on bulletin boards, door-dropped and email-blasted.
  3. The preliminary timetable and logistics for implementation of the Comcast equipment is tentatively set to begin Sunday, Sept. 1.

PLEASE BE AWARE THAT COMCAST WILL NEED ACCESS TO ALL UNITS TO IMPLEMENT ITS SERVICES. COMCAST WILL CONTACT AND SCHEDULE THE PERMISSION TO ENTER DIRECTLY WITH EACH RESIDENT.

GARAGE REPAIR PROJECT: Please refer to the schematic showing the phasing of the garage work that was email-blasted on July 9. As mentioned before, the garage work entails traffic membrane re-coating, replacement of 100% of the control joints where the concrete slabs meet, and the structural repair of three columns on the second floor. Each phase involves moving vehicles around, which will be coordinated by the garage staff under the supervision of the garage manager.

Phase One corresponds to a section of self-parkers on the third floor. Bulley & Andrews Concrete Restoration experienced issues with the replacement of the control joints that unite the concrete slabs of the buildings constituting the garage. The timetable to complete this work and return that third-floor area to self-parkers has been unfortunately extended by more or less a month. The delay is due to significant unknown/invisible conditions associated with the existing separation and control joints between the sections of the building where new control joints must be installed. Further, the control joint replacement entails much more preparation and concrete work than had been expected for ensuring the proper conditions to install the new control joints. The defects are extensive and need the attention of the Board. The Board will discuss this issue at its meeting on Aug. 13 (note that there was no July Board meeting, per Board decision) in order to make a decision.

SELF-PARKER CREDIT: In reference to the garage work being done by BACR in the section where you used to self-park, please note that a credit for the difference between the self-parking and valet parking fees will be computed once that section of the garage is completed. The credit will be prorated on a daily basis. The total credit will be applied to your Association account once BACR returns that area to self-parkers.

WATER HEATERS:

  1. Tankless heater: Can we install a tankless water heater at Malibu East? Unfortunately, the electric power needed for a tankless unit would exceed the capacity of your electrical panel.
  2. Assessment of your existing water heater:
    • The fabrication year is printed on the boiler plate. The life span of a water heater is about 12-15 years before corrosion of the tank.
    • Signs of rust and moisture at the top and bottom and on the body of the tank is a sign that your water heater has reached its life expectancy.
    • Any sign of rust in the water supply, cold and hot, is an indicator that the plumbing lines need to be replaced.
    • A metal pan connected to the back-drain stack is required; missing the pan and/or the connection to the drain is a violation of the Association’s rules and the city of Chicago’s regulation.
    • Signs of water on the carpet of the hallway is a sign of a leaking water heater.
  3. What to ask for if you hire a plumber:
    • Alert the plumber that the water heater closet is small, cannot be enlarged, and the new water heater and metal pan must allow the door panel to fully close.
    • Make sure that they install a metal pan, not plastic, and that the pan is connected with a copper drain to the back-drain stack.
    • If there are signs of rust on the pipes, request new valves, fittings and piping, copper or galvanized.
  4. What you need from your plumber:
    • Written proposal with a breakdown of the work to be performed.
    • Copy of the plumber’s city of Chicago or state plumbing license.
    • Plumbing insurance certificate.
  5. Replacement procedure:
    • Contact management to get an application.
    • Complete and return for review the application, along with the plumber’s license and insurance certificate.
    • Management will approve the replacement once the license and insurance are in compliance.
    • Once the replacement is approved, schedule with management the service elevator for delivery and installation.

FACADE AND BALCONY PROJECT: The façade and balcony work is in good progress. Please refer to the boards posted by the management office and the email blast dated June 21 that contains architect KGH’s visual summary of the work in progress. Contractor RBS completed all the north-side tiers; it is currently concentrating its efforts on the east side of the building. All residents of the A and B units are using their north and south balconies to store their personal property while RBS is working on the east balconies.

2019 water infiltration survey: We received water leak reports from some of you. It is not too late to complete and return the survey sheet for your unit if you have not yet reported water damage that is visible by the exterior walls in your unit. This survey was distributed to the residents of the two- and three-bedroom units facing south (A, C, E, G and J tiers).

WEST FACADE AND CLADDING STUDY: The Board of Directors opted to replace in kind (standard blocks) the CMUs of the upper section of the west wall. Considering that the standard concrete masonry units will not have the same configuration as the existing CMUs, the Board hired the architect Boeman Design to prepare sketches that maximize the aesthetic of the modern architecture of the building with the new CMUs (upper wall).