We thought this day would never arrive.
“What? That this blog would have an updated entry?”
No, I mean that apartment renovation has begun. Twelfth and Eleventh floor residents have moved to their temporary abodes, all the belongings are stored in individual pods, and work has begun to transform the top two floors into the finished products we have been talking about for the last four or five years.
The first task is asbestos abatement. No use avoiding the subject; notices have been posted and sooner or later everyone will hear the “A” word being tossed about. This building was built in 1979. Suspicions about asbestos were coming to light at that time, but regulations were not yet being imposed. The good news is that the asbestos used in this building is very localized and has never posed a danger to anyone here. In older buildings, this material was much more prevalent, but here at Selis Manor it was found to be contained in the mastic that glued the tiles to the floor. No exposure to us, and it was less than six percent of an epoxy product that could not become airborne in its natural state. Still, it is there; but, after abatement, there won’t be a speck to be found in the newly renovated spaces.
Once we get the all clear, demolition will begin. Old cabinets, stoves, refrigerators, air-conditioners, radiators, sinks, tubs, toilets, tiles, closet doors, and apartment doors will all be tossed. (Well, not literally tossed. You can still walk in front of the building without worrying about a toilet landing on your head. I wish I could say the same for my neighborhood.) Some walls will be opened up, and pipes will be replaced where needed. The floors will be leveled. (Sorry. Now if you drop something on the floor, it will no longer roll toward the windows.) Speaking of windows, new, better-insulated windows will replace the old ones and the new heating/air-conditioning units will be installed. The new bamboo floors will be laid. After that kitchens and bathrooms will be totally redone. There will be new intercoms, updated pull stations, new smoke and CO2 detectors. The new closet doors (no longer bi-fold, but a much easier outward swing) and the new apartment doors will be installed. Some fresh paint, and “voila” the apartment will be ready. Multiply that by two floors’ worth of apartments, and you can understand why it is a three month process. Lots to be done in a relatively short period of time.
Right now the construction is a lot of noise and inconvenience, but in a few months, when the twelfth and eleventh floors are reoccupied, there will be tangible evidence of what living at Selis Manor will be like in the not too distant future.