Report of the Board of Directors September 20, 2014

The-letter-AMessage from the Board  of Directors
Aquarius Condominium

September 20, 2014

 

This year,  needless to say, has been quite busy. In an effort to reduce costs, the Board has researched, reviewed credentials and interviewed Contractors, Building Architects, Landscape Architects, Engineers, Paver Companies, Glass Railings specialists etc. for various jobs needed for our West Deck repairs. The major work is being  performed by “Construction Specialists Incorporated”. This company is doing excellent work. On a weekly basis, one or two members of the Board meet with ACG (our engineers coordinating all aspects of the West Deck renovation), CSI (our construction company), and architects to monitor progress.

1. West Deck Glass Railings

The Board  has agreed to have CSI take on the Glass Railing project (as per approved wind
codes).

2. Twenty Year Membrane Warranty and West Deck Pavers

We also selected a very reputable firm (Carlisle) that will give us a “Twenty Year
Warranty” on a rubberized membrane that will be applied to the entire West Deck. An additional topping will go over the membrane, some flashing, sand and then the pavers will finish off the deck. The integrity of this “membrane” is perhaps the single most important aspect of the West Deck repair. While the Board has selected a reputable paver firm, we are hiring our Engineer to supervise the paver application. Carlisle has approved the selection of our Engineering Firm to supervise the paver installation.

3. West Deck Pool

It should be noted that the West Deck pool, having been left to the elements (salt air,
rain) for several years, required major unanticipated additional repair. In fact, the West Deck Pool needed to be almost entirely redone. Concrete on the base of the structure has been poured. Our engineer will determine whether the cement has cured (approximately 7 to 14 days) enough, so that cement may be applied to the walls of the pool. As the pool  project progresses we will provide further updates.

4. West Deck Bathrooms

The Bathrooms on the West Deck are in a location more pleasing to the eye. However, building codes change, and new codes require additional reinforcement with structures above the deck.

5. Main Lobby

You, of  course, have noticed that the entire Lobby area is closed. In an effort to address some significant leakage in the lobby area, our Engineer brought to the Board’s attention a need to replace almost all of the Cast Iron water lines that are located above a
large part of the Lobby ceiling. So that you’re aware, all water lines inside the building must be Cast Iron. Unfortunately in years past, when repairs were made to correct leakage, a number of these Cast Iron water pipes were removed and replaced with PVC, then joined to the existing Cast Iron pipes. Those repairs did not meet established building code! The PVC piping was even painted black to match the Cast Iron. We have made arrangements to make sure that these repairs meet Code and are now Cast Iron. Needless to say, the extent of repair in our Lobby area is much more than expected.  Continued Lobby updates will be forthcoming.

6. Painting Estimates

The board has secured several “building painting estimates”. This, in itself, is going to be a major job. However, when complete, our buildings will look much better. As we progress with the painting project, you’ll receive further updates.

7. Garage Main Entrance

Our apologies for the extended closing of the Main Garage Entrance. The West Deck pool shell required unexpected reinforcement and support from below as it has been exposed to the elements for a number of years. In addition, our Pool contractor did not secure necessary permits in a timely manner that were required in order for our General contractor to proceed with pouring a concrete base for the pool. All permits have now
been secured. All permits have been approved by a Hollywood City Inspector, and our General Contractor will proceed with the pouring of a “red” cement. Once  the concrete base is poured, it will take between 7 and 14 days to cure. Our engineer will make that call. At that point, shoring will be removed from  the Garage area, and the Main Entrance Gate will be open for use.

8. “Forty Year Inspection”

We have both  Electrical and Structural Engineering reports at this time. The next phase will be to send the projects for Bid Estimates. Further information on these repairs will be forthcoming.

9. Maintenance

By now everyone should be aware that we have hired Jeff Levine, as Chief Engineer for
the Aquarius. On a weekly basis, Jeff shares everything that he’s accomplished to all unit owners that have provided an email address to the Management Office. Mr. Levine is  mainly targeting our mechanical equipment to insure that it lasts a log time.
Currently, our buildings and essential equipment are being maintained
better than ever before. The general Maintenance Personnel are rarely seen as they are quite busy working to maintain important/expensive equipment (that has been neglected for years) and performing a number of “Common Area” repairs on a regular basis. We have also hired a “painter” who actually paints!

10. Security

We are all aware that our Security is lacking and needs to be improved. The Board is working on improvement in this area, as well as, possibly a new security team.
It is expected that extended hours and additional responsibilities for a Pool Attendant will be provided by Security very soon.

11. Assessment Funds/Trump Funds

“Trump Funds” at the start were approximately: $1,600,000.00. Assessment
Funds levied for West Deck renovation, at this writing are  approximately: $500,000.00. At  this time, we have approximately:  $900,000.00 remaining.

12. Residents are also lending support.

Some residents (Pam Ippolito/Teresa Marmolino) over the years have expressed
interest in a Beautification Grant given by the City of Hollywood. Applications were secured and delivered to  the Management Office. Unfortunately  they were not acted upon. Currently, Robert Lebovitz, Roy and Nancy DiMaria, Bob and Linda Satz have been
researching the Hollywood Beautification Grant Program and have supplied applications, letters of intent and authorization to the Management Office. Of course, the City of Hollywood must approve our plan to beautify our buildings (street view). An architectural plan and estimates must be submitted for the project. Additional updates will be forthcoming as this project progresses.

13. Recognition

The Board would like to extend its gratitude, on behalf of all Aquarius unit owners, to
our legal team who has labored numerous hours reviewing various contracts to make certain that they benefit the Aquarius to the fullest extent possible by law.

Every Member of the Board of Directors is involved in the West Deck renovation. Our major concerns are:

1. Enhancing the appearance of our buildings

2. Complying with established building codes to ensure safety and structural integrity for
years to come

3. Trying to make every dollar count, given our limited budget

*This message and all future construction updates will be posted in several building locations, mailed to all unit owners, be visible on Channel 93 and sent out to all unit owners that have provided an email address to the Management Office.

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About Cecilio Augusto Berndsen

Information Technology, Management, Project Management and Public Administration are areas I am familiar with. I am also interested in photography, wine, sailing, politics, economics, and economic development.
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