Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Local Law 11 Facade Work Continuing At Roosevelt Island's Manhattan Park - River Road Completely Closed To Traffic Until Further Notice Says Building Management, Residents Ask When Will Work Be Completed?

Image Of Manhattan Park's 10 River Road Yesteday

A Manhattan Park resident forwarded this announcement from the Manhattan Park Management:
May 13, 2013

All Residents

Manhattan Park

Roosevelt Island, N.Y. 10044

Dear Residents:

On Tuesday May 14, 2013, River Road will be completely closed to vehicle traffic due to Local Law 11 work from 7:00am until further notice.

Please remember that there will be NO VEHICLE TRAFFIC on River Road and absolutely NO PARKING in the restricted area until further notice.

If you have a vehicle parked on River Road after midnight tonight, it will be towed.

Thank you for your cooperation and we apologize for any inconvenience.

Manhattan Park Management

NYC Local Law 11 concerns:
... inspection of the exterior walls of buildings greater than six stories in height....
Residents of Manhattan Park expressed concern yesterday over the unknown length of time they will be inconvenienced by this work and how long it will be "until further notice" is reached.

Image of Manhattan Park's 30 River Road Yesterday

Residents expressed the following concern:
Any one get a clear indication on when the work might be done?

I'm in building 30, and I'm a little nervous about the windows being sealed up when the summer rolls around...

I'm surprised there hasn't been any specific notice.  I realize management doesn't want to commit and not deliver, but if they've been working on 40 for going on 10 months, and they're about to start 30, we should expect it to go through the summer AND the winter.

I'll have a newborn in the apartment in the middle of the summer, so it doesn't work to not be able to control the temperature at any time.

I realize they're not giving "concessions" on the rent during the work, but perhaps release from the lease should we have to move.
My biggest concern is about the lack of AC usage especially at night. Should we ask for a Town Hall meeting so we can get clarification?
Good luck with getting any information from Manhatten Park.  They tell you nothing.  Be prepared for the worst Buildings 10 and 30.  This ordeal is a horrible experience.  The noise during the day at times is unbelievable.  Yes, your windows and balcony gets taped up for the duration.  I did not use my heat during the evenings and weekends.  In the middle of winter it was freezing.  They did supply us with space heaters.

I cannot wait for them to be totally finished so we can have normalcy again.  Shame on Manhatten Park for not giving us proper notification on this project.  2 weeks notice is not enough notice to clean off your balcony when you can't use it for a year.  They left off the part that it was going to take a year.  Had we had known that, we could have put our balcony stuff into our storage unit in Queens.
And another:
We are in 40 and they have been at it for months now. I called the office and was told that they will be done with my building by the end of June.

In regards to the air conditioners I was told that they will install filters. You may want to call management for more details.
There were 2 cars parked on River Road last evening.


Anonymous said...

I'm scared to leave my name here given the seemingly punitive nature of Manhattan Park management. This work is horrendous, and I echo the comments about being nervous that there will be no air conditioning during the summer months or the ability to open a window. Also, when I rented the apartment last year I was told that the price of my apartment had to do with the view; given that they're going to put plastic over my window and take that view away, am I going to get a discount on rent? I'm being charged full rent for a luxury building that has at no point had all elevators working, and now I won't be able to drive up to the apartment if I need to unload items like groceries. MP better be prepared to give large concessions on rents or expect a tremendous number of residents not to renew their leases. Given the amount of move-ins I saw last summer, I expect that a good percentage of residents have expiring leases over the next three months.

Another thing- the only amenity MP has offered is free use of the wi-fi room/lounge at 8 River Road. Um, no- you'll need to do a lot better.

For the record, I like living in MP and I love my apartment. However, for these prices there are better options on Roosevelt Island and in NYC in general.

YetAnotherRIer said...

Management promised they would install filters in the air conditioning units. And no, you are not going to get a rent deduction for loss of view or unbearable noise during the day. Some people were able to get some other perks (free pool memberships, for example) but MP did create quiet spaces in the theater and in 2 River Road. This is part of city life. Is very much akin to living in a condo building and a neighbor does extensive renovations.

One more thing. The work will be done in phases, i.e. your side of the building will either go first, second, third, or whatever. You wil not be w/o air conditioning/heat for the entire 10 months or so it will take. Maybe a month or two at most. Management does provide space heaters and I assume the filters will help running the A/C units during the work.

Joe Carbo said...

all this island needs now are a bike lane on main street. and a thai restaurant . cant wait

Mark Lyon said...

It was frustrating, right after getting the "street closing" email, to see one of the managers of the construction crew turn part of the closed-off road into his own private parking space. If the area is too dangerous for residents to use, why is he parking his BMW there?

Anonymous said...

Ridiculous!!!! I've seen that car around.

Mark Lyon said...

Joe - One of the funniest things with Cornell's construction plans is that they propose a two-way bike lane on the renovated portion of Main Street that will surround their campus. ( )

YetAnotherRIer said...

Contractors always park as close to the construction site as possible. They drape a vest around the rear mirror or cover the seat with one. I always wondered if that was legal and I was told that it is so.

Mark Lyon said...

Manhattan Park Management just sent the following. In addition to using 8 River Road as a lounge area during the day, they are also offering free access to the pool during the day. It appears they are doing a non-trivial amount of work to the pool at the moment, but hopefully it will be ready for use soon.

The Manhattan Park staff would like to apologize for any inconvenience the construction may be causing you. As a courtesy to our residents we have created an exclusive resident lounge located in the Theater club at 8 River rd. This lounge will be open Monday-Friday from 8-4:30 PM. Cool off in the AC, relax on the sofas, and take in the beautiful views... The lounge features cable TV , DVD players, and FREE WI-FI.

Also, please enjoy the Manhattan park pool to cool off. The pool will be complimentary Monday-Friday from 11:30AM-4:30PM.

Please feel free to contact the leasing office if you have any questions at 212.308.4040

YetAnotherRIer said...

It's great that they try to work with us to make things easier. I did not get that note, yet, though. Was it sent to 10 and 30 RR tenants only?

Mark Lyon said...

I'm uncertain. It was sent by Danielle Higgins, but not through Building Link.

Nally said...

Ha ha ha I live in 40 and the noise is horrible. My balcony and north side of the building will be done last. I have been since January with out Heaters because they started my neighbor balcony and the dust reaches my to Heater units, so if I turned them on they would have crashed because of the construction dust. The Space heaters didn't work for me.

Now the summer is around the corner and my balcony will be done during those months. Again, I will not be able to use our A/C units (2 of them) because of the construction dust. I wonder WHEN and IF they are going to get us those filters for the AC.

After they have finished the balcony, then again my north wall. So for this year we have live so far with 5 months of disrupting noise (and I have a 1yr old) and you have to add the other 6 months until they finished.

Is this OK? NOOO!!! Is there something in our lease that could help us get a better concession next year. Because according to Brian Weisberg, due to the construction work being done right now they will have to charge more as soon as they completely finish one building. Because we will have NEW Balconies.

By law is it OK to live with this noise for over 1 year and not be able to use the Heaters and A/C units?? What does 311 says about excessive noise for children under 3 yrs old?

Then, they send us to 8 River road to avoid the noise, but where is my baby suppose to nap? The floor of 8 River Road where all the children will be running and shouting and playing? Her crib is inside her home. Or is my baby suppose to sleep pool side, exactly during the times where the sun is the most dangerous?? with kids running around and splashing water? with out A/C during summer? with risk of sunburn and insolation??

They also offer the Playroom, which by the way they only clean it every other day (if it is too messy) or every week!!! And kids and nannies eat there, and it is horrible. Even the daughter in law of Mrs Thelma McIntosh has bad comments about that room, she doesn't wants to use it because is filthy, dangerous and full with extra big toys that are all broken and with missing parts.

CheshireKitty said...

Agree, Mark. It was pointed out to them that we do have the promenade. I guess they stuck with their idea of the bike lane nonetheless.

CheshireKitty said...

It sounds nightmarish over there at MP. Tenants have little to no muscle because there's no tenants association. If you were organized, you could at least demand the Playroom be kept up properly. Also negotiate on concessions.

OldRossie said...

I agree with the above - no sense in speculating, talk to management, hopefully they will help.

that said, I wonder if anyone has gotten filters yet...

Jo said...

The Pool will only be complimentary until July 31st (according to the pool registration people who were in #30 on Friday afternoon). Not sure why that date? I'm certain all the drilling won't be done by then!

Jo said...

The playroom is NOT managed by tenant volunteers, it is managed solely by MP. We have asked that upgrades and improvements be made to the playroom (and MP was slow but reacted positively). But the problem is with the people who use it. Many people seem not to respect the place - they let kids eat and make mess, leave diapers there (seriously?!), and don't even pretend to tidy up when they leave. It would only take a bit of common decency and respect from users to make the playroom a much wore welcoming space than it is - and then I think MP would be much more willing to improve the space.

YetAnotherRIer said...

Thanks for clearing this up. A few years ago we were approached by another mom who volunteered to work for the play room (she was in charged of upgrading the equipment and toys) and she gave us the impression that it was mostly run by volunteers. She tried to recruit us.

YetAnotherRIer said...

They helped us and were very forthcoming with information. I think this MP outdid itself when it comes to dealing with the facade repairs. And I have been the biggest critic of their wrk and performance in the past.

anthony13 said...

I live at 30 River Road and I came home to my balcony door being completely covered and unable to open my door. I believe this is a fire hazard. According to the Fire Safety Plan that we have been issued "If smoke conditions worsen before help arrives, get down on the floor and take short breaths through your nose. If possible, retreat to a balcony or terrace away from the source of the smoke, heat or fire."

Mark Lyon said...

You may wish to report the issue to 311.

YetAnotherRIer said...

I doubt it is fire hazard. Nor is it a requirement for an apartment to have a balcony in the fist place. So, you are losing the privilege to use your balcony but you are not being put in any danger.

Mark Lyon said...

A premium is charged for the balcony. Seems not unreasonable to ask the landlord to forfeit that premium when the amenity is unusable.

mpresident said...

Has anyone had any luck getting management to move on their stance of not reducing the rent/offering concessions for the loss of the balcony?

Westviewer said...

Good luck with that. In Westview, for months without gas, we got a tiny reduction in rent. Be sure that whoever is negotiating with management knows what s/he is doing. Our loss of services was much more severe than not being able to use a balcony, but our folks were clueless.

Mark Lyon said...

I don't know but had I a balcony, I'd certainly be trying.

It does bring up interesting equity questions - the landlord is working to comply with the law, but if they are failing to move forward with appropriate speed, there may be grounds for a claim over the unnecessary loss of use.

YetAnotherRIer said...

I certainly agree. While MP management will most likely NOT give him any reduction (as you already know they'd rather let him out of his lease) I just think that his line of thinking will not get him anywhere at all.

anthony13 said...

I wonder if they have a lump sum contract with this contractor or time and material because it seems like this is taking way too long. I can't believe that every balcony needs work.

anthony13 said...

anthony13 • 3 minutes ago

I wonder if they have a lump sum contract with this contractor or time and material because it seems like this is taking way too long. I can't believe that every balcony needs work.

YetAnotherRIer said...

According to the DOB records the cost was estimated at $1.4 million per building (I assume it is per building because a separate cost affidavit was filed for each building).

The repairs are quite extensive and if I look at 40 River Road from the outside you can see that a lot of bricks were replaced. Local Law 11 requires that facades are checked every 5 years so I assume MP got away long enough to a point when a lot of work had to be done.

Mark Lyon said...

Brian just posted the following FAQ to BuildingLink:

Local Law 11 Frequently Asked Questions

What is Local Law 11?

Local Law 11 is a New York City Law requiring Fa├žade Inspection and Repair if necessary.

How long will this project take?

We expect the project to be finished by the end of 2013 (weather permitting)

What is the schedule?

The balconies will be done first followed by the "straight drops" in between. We will be notifying residents about schedule updates whenever possible. Please keep in mind that the schedule is "weather dependent."

Can I open my windows?

We recommend that our residents refrain from opening their windows while work is going on (Monday - Friday 8:00am to 4:30pm) to prevent dust from entering the apartment. If there is no plastic on your windows, they may be opened evenings and weekends.

Can I use my air conditioner?

Since we are going into the summer season with warmer temperatures, we understand that our residents will have to use their air conditioners. We will be fastening filters to the units to prevent dust from entering. We recommend that our residents refrain from using their air conditioners unless it has been fitted with a filter while work is going on (Monday - Friday 8:00am to 4:30pm) to prevent dust from entering the apartment. Air conditioners with a filter may be run nights and weekends indefinitely, please use sparingly on weekdays (Monday - Friday 8:00am to 4:30pm and only units fitted with a filter)

What are the hours that when they will be doing inspection and repair?

Inspection and Repair work will be done Monday-Friday from 8:00-4:30 (weather permitting)

If is too noisy at times, is there a quiet place to go to?

Yes. We have created a "resident lounge" at the Manhattan Park Theatre Club (8 River Road) for residents to enjoy. We have furnished the space with couches, tables and chairs. The lounge also has free WI-FI and televisions.

Also, during the summer season residents will also be provided upon request a "limited use" pool pass. This pass will allow residents to use the pool at the "Manhattan Park Pool Club" Monday thru Friday from 11:30am-4:30pm

Manhattan Park Management sincerely apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and we thank you in advance for your patience during this project.

YetAnotherRIer said...

I wonder why management is coming out with all that information now that 10 and 30 started to get their make overs and not when it started 10 months ago. Are there more complainers in those two buildings?

One more thing. How is pool management going to deal with those restricted membership people? I imagine it's going to be crazy busy and therefore something has to be done so that the restricted folks leave before the evening starts. Knowing how the pool has was run over the last years I am skeptical this will be done effectively and it will be extra crowded.