Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Straight from AV Office

To: All Residents of Arlington Village Condominiums
From: Datosha Williams, General Manager
Date: February 16, 2010
Re: Parking Concerns, Snow Removal Efforts, and Update of Gutters and Roofs

Parking: Management has received several complaints regarding violations of the Parking policy. Please be reminded that Arlington Village does not have “reserved” parking. Parking spaces are available to residents and their guests on a “first come-First serve” basis. While we certainly understand that many of you have shoveled individual spaces, that particular space cannot be reserved exclusively for your unit. However, residents are encouraged to work together and shovel out additional spaces. This act of kindness will ultimately create more parking for everyone.

Snow Removal: The staff has worked diligently to manage the snow removal throughout the Village. Additionally, in an effort to create more parking for residents J&L contractors were contracted by the Village to assist with the removal/relocation of accumulated snow piles. They were able to create some additional parking but ran out of places to relocate the snow.

Roofs and Gutters damage: A property inspection has been completed and many roofs and gutters were damaged due to the snow storms. These damages have been noted for repair/replacement and will be addressed as soon as the weather permits.Please contact the office if you see any leaks in the ceiling or walls of your unit as a result of the snow melting.

Thank you in advance for your time, attention and patience with the matters above. Should you have any concerns please contact the management office at or 703.920.1000.


Anonymous said...

"However, residents are encouraged to work together and shovel out additional spaces."

I have a problem with this....what the heck are our condo fees going to if we have to do the shoveling. I am all for helping your neighbor, but condo fees should pay for these types of services.

Blocked Spot said...

Many people that cleared their cars and spots, put the snow in another spot, making other snow spots useless. They should have shoveled the snow behind their car instead of blocking good potential spots. They made mountains of ice that will take a long time to melt or more difficult to remove.

Shoveler said...

Anon: The worst part is the bad job shoveling the sidewalks. They hired imperial painting co. and still the job was not done properly. You should shovel down to the concrete not as far as you feel like working. If they cannot handle it maybe layoff a worker or two and get a contract with a company that will do the job properly. Otherwise let the residents know that they need to shovel the sidewalks themselves to keep costs down.

Anonymous said...

Shovel the snow ourselves? I agree with the previous posters, this is why I pay condo fees. I was very surprised by the GM's suggestion. If AV isn't up to the task, then what else are they not fully performing that I don't know about b/c it's not as obvious as 3 ft of snow on the sidewalk?

Anonymous said...

My sidewalks are downright dangerous. Hope no one falls.

Anonymous said...

I shoveled my car and helped several of my neighbors. Then I almost fell down the unshoveled stairs walking back to my unit.

I don't expect perfection for my condo fees, but I expect better than the current situation.

Anonymous said...

Anyone who has lived in AV for long has seen that residents do "work together." I'm offended by the condescending tone of the manager's email, and complete failure to acknowledge that they need to do better. We hired a company to haul away snow, but they couldn't find anywhere to put the snow, so they gave up. But you should do the work instead, and good luck finding a place for all that snow/ice. And how about, "please be careful not to have a heart attack or injure your back"? No, there were no sentiments like that in the blast.

The fact is: these storms were massive, and we're not dealing with shovel-able fluffy snow now, but huge mounds of ICE.

And the huge and very dangerous chunks that need to be removed from gutters--grab a ladder, office workers, before someone gets killed.

Anonymous said...

If there really isn't any place to put the snow, then we need to pay someone to truck it away. Duhh!

Anonymous said...

I agree with the GM, and respect her courage to hit a subject straight on.

When you block a parking spot with a chair or cone your breaking the rules. Period.

Her message was simple, "the rules apply to everyone; no exceptions."

I have renewed confidence in management that no one in our neighborhood will be above the rules and regulations the rest of us obey.

Three cheers.

Now, please remove your lawn chairs because they look tacky and they make you look selfish.

Anonymous said...

"If there really isn't any place to put the snow, then we need to pay someone to truck it away. Duhh!"

Have you even read the message?

Anonymous said...

Ahh, no. We're doing what we always do. Saying to folks you're breaking the rules but then AV does nothing about it. That's not being a straight shooter.

Anonymous said...

Anon@7:15. Yes, I've read the message. They hired someone to remove snow but then ran out of places to put it. They ran out of places to put it in the Village, not on planet earth.

My point is that they didn't procure the right services. They neeed to contract for someone to move the snow out of AV. And, if the party they initially hired only had x square feet to put it, then move on and hire another party.

Just like DC has had to do...and DC is doing a better job at it than AV since at least they've finally realized what needs to be done. When will AV????

Anonymous said...

Ithink the GMs message is about a week too late. The only thing worse than the unshoveled sidewalks is the lack of communication from the office. When there is communication it is a lot of excuses with no solutions.

As for those concerned about the chairs and cones in parking spots, if you can't afford a chair please borrow one from a neighbor. Just stop whining,please.

Anonymous said...

I don't think a message on AV Blast really is going to accomplish much. A letter under the door to all residents would achieve a lot more.

Free Chair? said...

It is time for people to get rid of your chairs. And specially for units that have multiple chairs. Or I will move it out of my way. I have shoveled 3 parking spots.

Anonymous said...

"Anon@7:15. Yes, I've read the message. They hired someone to remove snow but then ran out of places to put it. They ran out of places to put it in the Village, not on planet earth."

Ah, got it. How about the tennis courts? No one uses them.

Anonymous said...

If S Barton and 16th Road are considered secondary county roads, than shouldn't Arlington county be hauling away the mounds of snow. Their snow melter can melt 60 tons an hour so finding a place to put the snow isn't a problem.

Anonymous said...

The tennis courts aren't an efficient place to quickly move the snow. The tennis courts are surrounded by a chain link fence with an entrance that no plow or earth mover could fit through.

James... said...

Please remove the chairs and cones!

A. It's against the rules to reserve parking spots

B. The village is starting to look like a trailer park

C. It makes you look selfish and petty

Help out your neighbor if they can't shovel or don't have shovel; it will make you feel better and it's the right thing to do.

Anonymous said...

+If S Barton and 16th Road are considered secondary county roads, than shouldn't Arlington county be hauling away the mounds of snow. Their snow melter can melt 60 tons an hour so finding a place to put the snow isn't a problem.+

I agree. And I was joking about the tennis courts, oh literal people.

S. Cleveland Street said...

I just want to point out that there are reasons for some people to have chairs marking spots. Perhaps they are older and can't navigate the tall snow banks, have babies that are in car seats (ever try to carry a baby in a car seat on the ice?), or have a broken leg or for whatever GOOD reason need their shoveled spot. They obviously got their car shoveled somehow/someway for a REASON. I don't think those reasons are petty or selfish.

Anonymous said...

If management wants all the spots being reserved by people who shoveled them cleared of chairs and cones, then why doesn't it just have the workers go through the village today and remove them? There's plenty of snow piles to put them on.

S.Barton Resident said...

We all needed to come together at the beginning.

I have no problem helping my neighbor but I was away when the snow first fell. I came back and found any spot that I could park my vehicle in taken up either by a car, chair, or mountain of ice.

I take issue with the mountains of snow. There is no reason other than laziness or selfishness as to why people elected to shovel their snow into unoccupied spaces. This action has caused a snowball effect where we are permanently without parking until the snow melts or until we all pitch in to shovel the snow back into the street or the easement or even onto the lawns of some of the units.

This has cascaded into a fight for parking spots amongst ourselves. Since I returned, I vigorously cleared out one spot and adopted the chair policy. This erupted into my chair being thrown into the embankment by a 'faceless' neighbor and then having the spot claimed by someone else, until I moved their chair and reclaimed it with my car. Everything resulting from the initial laziness/selfishness has caused us to become extremely petty.

We either need to rally to clear the snow for the common good or we should sit on our asses and complain that the job we are paying for isn't getting done and let the weather do the work for us.

HeatMiser said...

A friend was taken to the hospital a few days ago. Doctors said that he suffered a small delayed heart attack from shoveling. A lot of people also have back and neck issues. I know I can't shovel the ice mountains that we have now.

Telling people to shovel more is not the answer at this point. It's just too dangerous. I think that the GM didn't think through the issues before she sent out that AVBlast. Not impressed, so far. (And no, I wasn't someone who thought we should have kept you know who.)

Anonymous said...

These excuses are lame and self-centered. The fact is the snow storm was bigger than us and we need to cope with it w/o all the finger-pointing, drama and petty excuses.

I removed two chairs yesterday.

One person left me a note indicating I should "watch" my back.


"Watch my back?" This is starting to turn into a trailer park.

Anonymous said...

Wow, the village has gone bad. I didn't even know that this blog existed until now when the link is being shared due to the angry folks. And of course, the email blast likely only increased the anger.

As for running out of room to dump the snow, I agree with those who say that this sounds silly. We have plenty of areas in the ravene with all of the acres we have. I see places where more snow could be moved. Also, at first the guys did a great job of shoveling the snow. It just seems that since the intial snow storms, no more snow has been shoveled. And the sidewalks are very dangerous in many places. Maybe both of these issues are tougher and larger than they appear and our budget and resources are just not able to handle it. I mean, there are some benefits and some limitations to no increase in our condo fees. A historical and record breaking winter of snowfall is clearly not typical. Clearly, Washington DC and many areas of VA and MD also cannot handle this amount of snow. The 3-hour commutes are proof of this.

As for the chairs, they are clearly placed because it is frustrating. Many communities do this and we are not alone. The chairs are no worse looking in my opinion than the huge piles of snow. People spent hours shoveling only to come home to see that someone took their spot who did not share the work and shovel or someone in a 4-wheel drive who could park anywhere. While letting the air out of someone's tires is going pretty far to punish these folks and I have heard that this has happened, I do understand the frustration. We are all being controlled by this snow and this has us all cranky. But, it seems that the only thing that we can do is shovel more if we are able to and help our neighbors who cannot and clear the area and ourselves and hope that we do not get another storm. In a few weeks, this may all be just a bad memory.

Anonymous said...

Fairlington condo management notified residents that it was removing all chairs and the owners of the chairs could pick up their chairs by a certain date or the chairs would be thrown away. This is what experienced, well-regarded condos do. AV management needs to do the same thing!!

Anonymous said...

I don't think any of our residents should be forced to navigae the snow banks and ice, regardless of whether they are old or have babies or broken legs. It's dangerous! It is the responsibility of AV staff to clear our sidewalks.

Anonymous said...

I'm confused. One time I hear that most of the parking is controlled by the county, then I hear it's governed by AV bylaws. I can understand the off street spots governed by AV, but if the spots on street are really county spots then they clear them and govern who puts chairs on them. Am I missing something?

Anonymous said...

Quite frankly, I would much prefer the Village staff devote time to clearing the walkways rather than removing chairs from parking spaces. Goodness god, are they just going to wait for it to melt?

Snowy said...

"I'm confused. One time I hear that most of the parking is controlled by the county, then I hear it's governed by AV bylaws."

You and me both. I keep asking this question and it seems to go into the void.

Getting a straight answer would avoid a lot of these arguments.