Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Glowing Profile Of Roosevelt Island AVAC Garbage Removal System In NY Times - But Westview Residents Ask When Their Broken AVAC Service Will Be Restored

The Roosevelt Island AVAC garbage removal system was the subject of this August 3 NY Times article:
... Roosevelt Island was envisioned with full 1970s zeal as a utopian place with affordable if somewhat Soviet-style housing in a car-free landscape. While vehicles still found their way onto the island, garbage trucks were largely banished, thanks to the pneumatic tube system, one of the largest in the world. It sucks up roughly 10 tons of trash from the island’s 12,000 residents each day...
... For Roosevelt Island residents, using the Automatic Vacuum Assisted Collections System, known as Avacs, is as simple as taking out the trash. After they drop garbage down chutes in their buildings, it collects at the bottom until a trapdoor is activated, releasing the waste into 22-inch-wide red steel tubes that run underground....
Click here for full NY Times article on Roosevelt Island AVAC garbage removal system.
Unfortunately, residents of the Roosevelt Island Westview building have been living without the use of the AVAC garbage removal system recently.

A resident of Westview building commenting on the What's On Your Roosevelt Island Mind post as Westviewer asks:
The AVAC is still inoperable in Westview, as it as been for months. Management says that repairing it is the responsibility of RIOC. RIOC says it's the responsibility of the building management. When do you think it will be repaired?
Westview resident and former Roosevelt Island Residents Association President (RIRA) Matt Katz adds:
For months now, management has hung large black garbage bags in the AVAC rooms, requiring staff to collect them and store them in the basement prior to pick-up. This has resulted in considerably more work for the staff, formerly accomplished automatically by the AVAC system, and the proliferation of fruit flies in the basement, currently spreading throughout Westview. I’ve asked the new site manager ... for an update, but without a response. I don’t have a clue as to what the impediment could be.

Building staff doesn’t have a clue and neither does the Westview Task Force Board of Directors. I’ve heard stories that the problem is inside Westview and also, that a pipe broke under the street.
Image Of Garbage Bag Hung In Westview AVAC Chute Room

In response to an inquiry from Mr. Katz to Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Charlene Indelicato about the status of Westview AVAC system, Ms. Indelicato reports:
Westview will be installing a new AVAC valve that will address the issue and restore service according to a letter agreement between RIOC and Westview which RIOC has signed and sent over to Westview for execution. We have provided Westview with the scope of the work to be done and the equipment needed to complete the project. The cost will be borne by both parties equally. Hopefully, Westview will start work as soon as possible.
I spoke yesterday with Westview management company representative Steven Greenbaum of Mark Greenberg Real Estate Co. Mr. Greenbaum disagreed that the Westview AVAC had been out of service for months saying that the AVAC service outage was approximately 3 weeks. Mr. Greenbaum added that there was no spread of fruit flies throughout Westview.

The good news for Westview residents according to Mr. Greenbaum is that an agreement has been signed with RIOC for repair of the AVAC with installation of a new compressor and that the Westview AVAC should be fixed within a week.

Mr. Greenbaum also complimented the building staff for doing an excellent job during the AVAC system breakdown and thanked the residents for their help and patience as well.

Roosevelt Island resident Frank Farance responded to Westviewer's concern:
Building is responsible for chutes to basement, RIOC responsible for gate/valve and onward. However, if tenant shoved a Christmas Tree down the chute and jammed the AVAC system then, I'm guessing, the building shares the responsibility of the clog ... just as your visiting guest flushing a whole roll of paper (rather than single sheets) and clogging the toilet, that's your problem not the landlord's -- ok, maybe this only happens in college -- but Christmas Trees and furniture have been sent into the AVAC. And the AVAC Santa seems to know when you've been naughty and nice.
Let's hope the Westview AVAC gets fixed this week.

UPDATE 8/11 - Mr. Greenbaum reports today that the Westview AVAC  compressor unit is installed and now working.