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March Board Updates

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New Google Group for Building Residents 
We're excited to introduce a Google Group for all building residents. Residents can now ask questions relevant to the building or neighborhood, sell or give away items, post news, by emailing If you already receive updates from the board, you've been automatically added to the group. However, note this is a closed group, so spammers or people who do not live in the building will not be able to send an email to the group. If you are a resident, but haven't been automatically added, email and please include your name and apartment number. From now on, updates from the board will be sent through this new google group. 

Verizon Fios Installation Has Begun
Verizon Fios installed some conduit from a man-hole at Foster and East 18th under the street and our sidewalk to the south side of our building. While this is the first step to have fiber-optic cable directly into our building, we anticipate three more months of work before this project is complete.

Leaks in Units?
The walls of our building near our roof, and some of the structures on our roof are showing some wear and tear. Water is getting in through various cracks, and the board is preparing a project to repair these cracks and areas that look to be in danger of forming cracks. If you or someone you know has any water getting in to your walls, especially on the upper floors of the building, please contact the board ASAP so that we can include your area in this project, if you have not done so already. This project will also help to seal gaps in the building's "heat envelope", preventing warm air from escaping as quickly in the winter, which should improve our building's energy efficiency.

Boiler Replacement Project Progress
After receiving several contractor bids for the project, the board has narrowed the field down to the three best proposals and is scheduling interviews with each of the three contractors before selecting the winning bid for the work.

In the meantime, the asbestos pipe insulation must be removed before demolition of the existing boiler can begin. The board has approved contractors for this project. Stay tuned for updates coming soon.

Hallway Renovation Update
The board is receiving proposals from three designers, and will share the options with residents in a special meeting to be scheduled in the next couple of months. Residents will be able to offer feedback on complete designs including wall coverings, paint colors, and patterns of carpeting.

Be Kind to your Upstairs/Downstairs Neighbors
A reminder to all residents: there is no sound barrier between floors, so try to be as considerate as possible to your downstairs neighbors and as forgiving as possible to your upstairs neighbors. A few tips:

  • If some of your high-traffic areas are not covered with carpeting or rugs, consider taking of your shoes more often when walking around in your apartment.

  • Remember that dropping shoes or moving chairs can seem like no big deal, but they can sound shockingly loud to the person below you.

  • If your upstairs neighbor is making distracting noise, consider politely knocking on their door and introducing yourself. Try to work together to figure out what activities the problem noises are coming from and potential solutions.

  • Avoid retaliating or knocking on the ceiling.

  • Although the board can sometimes help mediate noise disputes, the best course of action is to develop a relationship of mutual respect and understanding with your vertical neighbors.

Advice on Kitchen/Bathroom Renovations

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Posting on behalf of Rebecca D'Andrea

Ben and I are planning to renovate our kitchen within the next 6 months and would LOVE to talk to other people in the building that have done similar renovations.  Our kitchen, undoubtedly similar to other kitchens in the building, is small and has odd measurements due to bulk heads (hiding ducts or pipes--I'm not sure!) above.  I'm curious to see other renovated kitchens (and baths) to get an idea of what may be possible. 

Want to share your experience with Ben and Rebecca? Shoot them an e-mail.

Have a message you'd like to share with the other residents - for now email while we work to open up the bulletin board functionality.

Fire Escape Scraping/Painting on Hold

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Until Further Notice, the fire escape scraping and painting project is suspended while we await further information from our Property Manager. Leon has been personally overseeing the contractors doing the scraping of our fire escapes, and has raised a few issues with the contractor on our behalf. Until these procedural issues are resolved, work is temporarily suspended. Please keep your eye on this web site for further updates, as work could begin again at any time. Thank you for your patience as we work to ensure that this project is executed properly.

Laundry Maintenance/Refund Form On Line!

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Our new laundry company, Service Directions, Inc., has an on line form to fill out if you have a complaint or if you need to request a smart-card refund. We have made a permanent link on our "forms" page. This is the direct link: 

You can also speak with Tony, our super, if you have any problems with the laundry machines or your smart card, and he can call Service Directions on your behalf the old fashioned way. Also, you can report problems on our laundry room white board. But for those of you who like to get things done on the internet, their web-form is for you!!


Building Antenna Gets HD DTV

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After working on this problem for the past few months, it has been determined that our existing building antenna does receive both VHF and UHF signals. Therefore, it is HD and Digital TV capable. Right now we have two residents receiving over 45 over-the-air channels in full beautiful high-definition. Through the hands-on work of Andrew, the board President, and Tony, the Super, and Rolando and Nasario our Door Staff, we have saved the building most of the $1,400 it would have cost us to replace our existing early-1980's antenna. Special thanks to the residents in 6M and 1M who helped us do troubleshooting. If you are a resident who is having trouble getting the new HDTV stations via our antenna, please e-mail the board at to request that we help you with your antenna connection.

The opinions expressed here are those of the authors only. They do not necessarily reflect the positions or opinions of the 616 East 18 St. Owners Corporation, any of its staff members or residents, or Maxx Management.

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