Saturday, January 31, 2009

FVCSA Board of Directors Meeting

The FVCSA Board held its monthly meeting on January 27 at The Smith House. The agenda included discussion of the upcoming installation of Verizon's highly rated FiOS fiber optic TV and Internet service in Princeton Landing. While the company has not yet provided detailed plans or schedules, Verizon has contacted our management office and indicated it will be bringing FiOS to the community. Anyone who is interested in an alternative to Comcast should be happy to hear that. Because I work for the company, I did not participate in the Board's consideration of this agenda item. On other matters, the Board approved the following expenditures:
  • An annual pest control contract with JRG Pest Control, at a cost for the year of $9,630;
  • The purchase from Saxon Office Supply of a reconditioned copier for the management office, at a cost of $4,795;
  • Roof repairs for 381 Sayre Drive to be performed by Signature Construction, at a cost of $3384.96; and
  • Roof repairs and skylight replacement for 290 Sayre Drive to be performed by Signature Construction, at a cost of $5,905.04.
The Board appointed Bernie Siebers and Ed Moeller to three-year terms on the Covenants Committee. Both Ed and Bernie live in Parcel 2. Dates and times for future Board meetings can be found on our calendar. The Board also approved the minutes of the meeting held on December 2, 2008.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Parcel Projects: Parcel 1

Our property manager Sal Pirrera reports that there is some major work scheduled for Parcel 1 in spring 2009. The cost of this work was assessed under the previous management company but not completed. After warmer weather arrives, the parking areas in Parcel 1 will be paved. Curbs and sidewalks will also be repaired where necessary. The front doors and storage doors of the townhouses will be painted. In the multiplex units, the entrance doors, laundry room doors and utility doors will also be painted. The Association will install privacy walls between the patios of the townhomes to replace the ones that were removed when the stucco siding on those units was replaced in 2005. Under Sal's supervision, engineering specifications for the paving have already been prepared and approved. Specifications for the townhome privacy walls are also complete. The new privacy walls will be prefabricated and will match the color of the stucco siding. Sal deserves special thanks for recommending this cost-effective material and installation method to the Board and the Parcel 1 committee after he saw it at a trade show. Information about this work will be provided to Parcel 1 residents before work begins.

Friday, January 23, 2009

This Week at Princeton Landing

Thanks to property manager Sal Pirrera the potholes just outside the front entrance have been patched. There is long-standing uncertainty about who is responsible for the small section of roadway that needed repair. Plainsboro Township, Princeton University, and the New Jersey Department of Transportation have not taken responsibility in the past, and although it is close to the entrance to Princeton Landing, it is beyond our entrance monuments and may not be the Association's responsibility either. Sal is now expecting that Plainsboro Township will have a surveyor locate exact property boundaries in the area so responsibility for maintenance can be clearly determined.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inauguration Day

And we'll need to remind ourselves, despite all our differences,
just how much we share: common hopes, common dreams,
a bond that will not break.

The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama

Monday, January 19, 2009

There Are Ties Between Us

Let us turn our thoughts today to Martin Luther King

And recognize that there are ties between us

All men and women living on the Earth

Ties of hope and love

Sister and brotherhood

Shed A Little Light by James Taylor

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Snow Removal

Our property manager Matt Lubas would like to remind residents of a few key points regarding our snow removal procedures:

The first priority is clearing the Loop Road to allow access from homes to Route 1. The walkways in Parcels 1 and 2 are the next priority because homes in these parcels do not have garages, and walkways must be cleared to allow access to parking areas. The next priority -- driveways, sidewalks and front entry stoops in other parcels -- will depend on the storm. As residents begin to move their cars from the parking areas, our contractor, Shearer Penn, will clear the parking stalls where possible. Residents can help by removing their vehicles from non-plowed areas to plowed areas as work progresses. After a winter storm the Association will do everything reasonably possible to make walkways and roadways throughout the community safe for passage. However, residents and visitors still need to exercise caution.

Each storm presents its own challenges. Management asks for our patience during these winter events.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Recycling Dates

Some of the recycling dates previously shown on our calendar were incorrect. We've made the necessary changes. To view the updated calendar, you can click here or use the calendar link in the right-hand column. We're sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Monday, January 12, 2009

This Week at Princeton Landing

Summit Construction has now finished clearing gutters on homes throughout the community. Brickman is nearing completion of the fall cleanup of the property. There are a few spots along the Loop Road and some backyards in Parcels 1, 3, 4 and 6 that are not yet finished. Both contractors were hampered by the early arrival of winter weather, which prevented completion of this work before the holiday season as had been expected.

The Board of Directors will hold a private working session on January 13 to discuss plans for the coming year.

At the end of 2008, work was completed to renew FVCSA's insurance coverage for 2009. This is a significant effort and a major expense for the community. Beth Dalzell of Parcel 4 assisted our brokers and risk management consultant with the renewal. Beth reports that for 2009, FVCSA will have similar insurance coverage as 2008, at about the same cost to the community as last year.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Holiday Decorations Reminder

Just a reminder to residents with live greenery that January 16 and 23 are the last pickup days for Christmas trees, wreaths and garland. These items should be placed where your recyclables are picked up at the curb. All decorations must be removed prior to disposal. FVCSA requires homeowners to remove outdoor holiday decorations by January 11, 2009.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Nature Guide

Jon Latimer, Parcel 1 resident and the author and editor of many field guides, writes:

"Despite the cold weather, there is still plenty of birdlife to see in and around Princeton Landing. You may see fewer birds in our area, but that's because during winter many birds gather in flocks and stay in wooded areas for protection against the wind and to find food. You might see a flock in one place and find nothing in others.

"Small birds such as chickadees, titmice, and sparrows form mixed flocks that can often be seen at bird feeders. They are sometimes joined by House Finches, goldfinches, and small Downy and Hairy Woodpeckers. Larger birds such as robins and starlings sometimes gather together but form independent flocks. They are often joined by cardinals and sometimes by Mourning Doves.

"Princeton Landing is home to a flock of about a dozen crows. (In medieval times, a flock of crows was known as a "murder" of crows.) You might hear them long before you see them. You will also hear formations of Canada Geese passing overhead and can see hundreds of them gathered together on grassy fields. These geese have become so numerous they are considered pests.

"Finally, two winter visitors deserve mention. You may see sparrow-sized birds with black backs and light gray undersides on the ground around your house. They are Slate-colored Juncos. These "snowbirds" travel in flocks and are easily identified when flying by the white feathers on the edge of their black tails.

"Another winter visitor can be found on Lake Carnegie. If you see a duck with very white sides and a dark head, it is a male Common Merganser. The female almost looks like a different species, with a gray body and a bright rusty head. They occasionally mix with Canada Geese, but more often keep their distance, diving for fish in small flocks. When our weather warms, they will follow the cooler temperatures to their mating grounds in northwestern Canada."

The bird population is constantly changing in our area. We'll be posting about birds and other wildlife from time to time.