An April letter sent from the president of the Champlain Towers South Condominium Association said the damage to the basement garage of the doomed building was “extraordinary”. It has “dramatically worsened” since an inspection about two and a half years earlier, and the building’s concrete deterioration has “accelerated”.
The letter also pointed out that the multi-million dollar necessary repairs were a matter of frustration among residents. The letter describes the events that led to last week̵7;s collapse in Surfside, Florida, that left 11 people dead and more than 150 missing.
“We have been talking, arguing and arguing for years. and will continue to do so for many years to come. when different items come in,” the letter states.
The April 9 letter was received by USA TODAY from family members of two building residents who have disappeared since Thursday’s collapse, author Jean Wodnicki, chairman of the association committee. Survived the collapse on Thursday. Condo Association lawyers told the media.
Over seven pages, Wodnicki provides an overview of the major repairs required for the building. She noted that in the fall of 2018, according to documents previously published by the City of Surfside, the consortium hired engineering firm Morabito Consultants to inspect the building. The audit found “Major errors” in the design of the collapsed concrete column building in the garage area under the structure and predicted failure to correct the problem in “The near future will greatly expand the extent of concrete deterioration.”
In her letter about 30 months later, Wodnicki noted that “Indeed, noticeable damage, such as in the garage, has been greatly worse” since the first inspection.
“When you can see the cracks in the concrete with your eyes. This means that the rebars that are held together are rusting and deteriorating beneath the surface,” she told villagers.
Jay Miller, retired college professor from Philadelphia. City, who moved to Champlain Towers South three years ago, told USA TODAY on Saturday that residents were aware of an October 2018 report that warned of “massive structural damage” and ultimately voted to fix it. Even if the agreement was successful, it was time.
“It’s not that people are ignorant,” Miller said.
But when residents first mentioned the report in 2018, the $7 million price tag caused a stir on the Condo Association Board, Miller said, a new committee finally took over. “A very dedicated and hardworking person,” Miller said. But they lost about a year of dealing with the damage they were warned in the report.
Miller also recalled that the committee’s latest assessment was much higher.
Marta Castro, a resident of Champlain Tower East, said she regularly spoke with people in the south tower, expressing concern about the number of appraisals proposed and that there was adequate financial oversight.
“They’ve been talking about it for a while,” she said. “A few people I spoke to had concerns about the financial side of it.”
Castro, a former homeowner’s association board member in Champlain Tower East, said the South Tower always looked disorganized. Concrete chips are visible and need to be repainted. She said she was friends with several people in the collapsed tower. which are lost and likely to die
as far as you know The South Tower Condo Association is competent, she said, but Castro said. She was angry that government oversight had failed. This will put the building in such a dilapidated condition.
“My mourning lasted three days,” she said. “Now I am angry.”
Wodnicki’s letter provides further details. He noted that the condition of the roof of the building was “extremely deteriorating” and needed additional repairs. She noted that cost estimates are also increasing every year. And the estimated cost for all repairs increased from about $9.1 million in 2018 to $16.2 million this year. The letter stated that Associations can bring other funds. can be used for this new project. But still managed to find only $707,003 in cash on hand, with $15.5 million remaining.
“Big, big pieces are the structures that have to be made,” Miller said. “I don’t remember who said that we shouldn’t be doing concrete work. I think everyone agrees with that.”
Wodnicki said repairing the basement pool deck area, which engineer Frank Morabito said was designed on a flat surface rather than properly sloped to allow water to flow out, would be expensive.
“Since the much-needed concrete/waterproofing work is underground. We therefore had to pull up most of the lot’s ground level to access the areas that needed repair,” Wodnicki wrote.
She cautions that “when performing any concrete repairs It was impossible to know the extent of damage to the rebar below until the concrete was exposed.”
“Often the damage is too extensive to be detected by surface inspection,” she added.
Wodnicki concluded with a message she said she hoped the letter would help residents better understand why upcoming assessments are so costly. and said some residents believed “We’re overestimating.”
“Your board of directors is working hard to get this project done,” she wrote, adding that they had consulted with engineers, accountants and lawyers. “We’ve already covered a lot of ground to get the project going. … We’ve been talking, arguing, and arguing for years. and will continue to do so for many years to come. when various items come into play.”
Seventy-five days later, the building collapses.
Contributors: Sudiksha Kochi and Rick Jervis
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Miami condo deterioration worsened in April. the letter said