Hallway Paint Touch-ups
The Board is considering a remedy to the common area hallways, which continue to look worn. We all need to be aware that a perfect repair can only be done when the time comes to fully repaint these hallways. But in the meantime, we are considering possible paint touch-ups if they will improve the current state and help to extend the life of the current paint job.
Garbage Room Odour
Property management is continuing to look for a solution to the garbage room odour, particularly in the area along Cumberland Street where the Phase 1 garbage room is vented. Steps have been taken, but the problem is persisting. A number of experts are being consulted in the hopes of finding a long-term solution. Please be reminded that the plastic bags you may receive from grocery stores have holes in the bottom of them. If you use them as garbage bags, they will drip liquids leaving a trail from your door to the garbage chute. Please help keep the carpets in our hallways stain and odour free and use proper garbage bags without holes.
Electricity Submetering with Stratacon
As everyone has been made aware, all units are now being metered for electricity consumption, with the first billing period ending October 31st. It has come to our attention that some owners have not yet filled in the enrolment form to setup your account with Stratacon. If you have not filled out the form, your first bill will be addressed to "the owner/occupant of unit XXX". A paper copy of the form was delivered to all unit owners, and is also available on www.theeastmarket.ca website.
Just as you are responsible for paying your monthly condo fees, it's important that you fill out the enrolment form and ensure your electricity bill is paid on time to ensure uninterrupted supply of electricity to your unit and to avoid any lien being placed on your unit. Stratacon has confirmed that the first bill will be sent on our about November 10th, 2009.
Gym Free Weights Update
As you may be aware, the free weights have been temporarily removed from the gym due to the transfer of noise to nearby units when the weights are dropped. We are working as quickly as possible to resolve the issue and the weights will be reinstated as soon as possible.
Here's a quick summary of what is underway: to date, an a acoustic engineer has evaluated the sound transmission from the ground floor to second floor in the Phase 2 building, and provided recommendations to abate the noise. This will include a sound buffering floor treatment typical of those used in commercial gyms to minimize the reverberation of sound, as well as reduce the transfer of vibrations from the floor to the concrete walls and ceiling. Once the new floor has been installed, the free weights will be returned to the gym for use. In time a ceiling treatment will then be installed once the investigations into the water damage (from the pipe in the free weight room refer to the update later in this memo) are resolved. Samples of a number of flooring treatment options have been obtained and tested. A mock-up of the materials, which performed best in the initial tests, will be provided for further testing to ensure the final installation is effective. Everyone involved is working extra hard to expedite this process.
We understand that the temporary removal of the free weights may seem sudden; however, the decision was taken as a last resort. The Boards (Phases 1 and 2) have posted signs over the past months (temporary and permanent signs) requesting gym users to not drop the free weights. This has had little impact, so the Boards implemented hours of use for the gym facility from 24/7 to 6am to 11pm. This did make some improvement as users were no longer dropping weights at 3am and awakening those living above and close to the gym. It may not be understood by most, that noise can be transmitted through building structures similar to ours and heard in areas that would be surprising to most. For example taping or dropping hard items directly on concrete floors or on wood floors without the proper acoustic underlay can be transmitted and heard throughout the entire building. A carpet tack strip installed on a 7th floor unit can be heard on the first floor and perceived as directly above when in fact it is many floors above and at the opposite end of the building.
Despite these attempts, users of the gym facility have continued to drop free weights causing unreasonable noise and disturbance for some residents. It is important to note that the mandates of the Boards are clearly outlined in the Condominium Act and the Corporation's Declaration. First and foremost, the Boards and Management are obliged to take reasonable steps to ensure the safety and quiet enjoyment of residents. As such, there will be times when actions need to be implemented quickly to comply.
We thank those who have been careful to avoid dropping weights. Unfortunately, despite the notices posted in the gym and with the increased gym use as the weather gets colder, the noise of dropped weights has again become unacceptable, affecting nearby residents' sleep. As the construction and design of the building is identical in the games room, meeting room and party room, please be mindful of noise transmission in these areas while you are enjoying these spaces. Also please be reminded that at times common elements will need to be made unavailable for many reasons, including maintenance, repairs and upgrades. We thank you for your patience and consideration of your neighbours.
Has East Market “gone to the dogs"?
Those of us who have pets dearly love them and they are a welcomed addition to our family and homes. It has become visibly apparent that some owners are not getting home in time to take their dogs outside for a walk (to do their business), and as a result dogs are dribbling a trail of urine on the carpet from their unit to the elevator. The cost to have one hallway cleaned is $200.00, and those without dogs should not be stuck having to pay for extra cleanings
Please also be reminded the garbage and paper recycling bin in the lobby is not the appropriate place to dispose of your dog's bags of feces. This leads to VERY unpleasant smells in the lobby. Thank you for being responsible dog owners and picking up after your dog, but please take a few extra steps and dispose of the bags of feces in the garbage room or down the garbage chute on your floor.
New Assistant Property Manager
The Property Management is continually looking for ways to improve the communication with owners. Please welcome Amy West as Dorothy's new Assistant. Property Manager. Amy will be working by Dorothy's side and will be responding to emails and calls on day-to-day issues under Dorothy's direction.
Communication with your Management Team
Keeping records on issues at the East Market is one of the most important tools for the Corporation today and for many years to come. Please ensure that any items of concern or action, which is needed in your unit or in the common areas, are reported to the Property Manager directly. Gabriele and Sonny have significant demand placed on them with their daily tasks. As such, if you make a request directly to them they may unintentionally overlook or forget about a request when you ask them throughout their day. Your Board of Directors gives direction to the Property Manager, who in turn provides direction to the building staff. Please help us all and ensure you communicate directly with Dorothy Church, the Property Manager and/or her assistant, Amy West.
Current Building Concerns
Many of you may have noticed localized water spots and drywall removal throughout the common areas and in some owner's units. Unfortunately through persistent investigation, the Property Management with the assistance of our contractors and engineers have found an issue relating to the insulation surrounding the chilled water and heat pipes in various areas around the building, such as the pipe in the free weight room. During the summer, due to temperature variations of the ambient temperature and the cold water running through the pipes to cool the building, condensation builds up on the pipes and drips causing what may appear as a water leak in the ceilings of the common areas and in some units. We are working diligently to find the original cause of this problem and we will not apply “band-aid solutions", we are continuing investigations and will work to ensure the repair that is implemented is a long-term solution. Until the investigation is complete, and as a temporary measure only, we will be placing access panels in areas where drywall and pipe insulation have been removed.
Consider Being a Director of Your Condominium Corporation
The AGM is just around the corner! Each year one position on the Board is open for election. When individuals are elected as directors, it is then up to the directors to determine amongst themselves who will hold the position of President, Vice-President and Secretary-Treasurer.
Potential Board members should be prepared to meet twice monthly, less often during the holidays, and as required due to the Board's demands, and to spend time becoming familiar with the agenda and items for each meeting. In addition, they should become familiar with the Condominium Act of Ontario, the Condominium Corporation's documents and should also plan to attend a full weekend workshop for new Directors in a course offered by the Canadian Condominium Institute.
The President is expected to provide leadership to the Board, and conduct both the meetings of the Board and of the unit owners. The President, as chair, will follow the format used at shareholders' meetings of most public business corporations. The Property Manager often chairs the monthly meetings, and is always available to provide guidance. Competence, common sense, and tact go a long way to ensure successful meetings.
The duties of the Officers are listed in the Condominium Documents, By-law Number 1. The Property Management firm appointed by the Board of Directors performs most of the duties listed in the Corporation's Bylaw Number 1, however, the Secretary-Treasurer has the responsibility to review the monthly financial statements and the annual audit and to keep the Board apprised of the financial health of the Condominium Corporation. The Secretary-Treasurer leads the annual budget process to establish the condominium fees for the following year. The Board approves the budget, and it is sent to unit owners, along with the schedule of fees by the Property Manager.
The Board does not manage the day-to-day operations of the property; however, your Property Manager is there to provide the information needed by the Board for any given item. The Property Manager's guidance is there as a tool to ensure the Condominium Corporation and the Board follow the Condominium Act of Ontario, and its requirements. The Board gives direction to the Property Manager based on terms established within the property management contract. The Property Manager is then responsible for the day-to-day operation of the Condominium Corporation in accordance with the contract and budget, responding to the concerns of the unit owners, and directing contractors in their performance of assigned duties.
To be a member of the Board of Directors does require a serious commitment to the successful operation of your Condominium Corporation. It is also a rewarding experience to share in building and maintaining the sense of community for the residents.
You may wish to consider standing for election to the Board if you are comfortable with the above criteria and requirements. If you are interested but require more information, the Property Manager can arrange for you to meet with the current Board of Directors.