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Leaking acid; I signed what?

By January 4, 2008

Trace Lofts

I was wondering why my neighbor stopped parking next to me about three weeks ago. I figured it had to do with my switch from a compact four door car to a hulking SUV. Turns out it really has to do with leaking acid:

Dear Matt,

We have recently been made informed of a potential danger in the area where you are parking which we want to make you aware of. Some water has migrated through the concrete slab on the west side of the Trace Lofts garage and has caused damage to a car parked below.

As you know there are dangers inherent in driving through and parking in a construction zone which is why everyone signed an early access agreement prior to closing. These dangers aren’t limited to dust and sharp objects – they specifically include water migrating through concrete and causing permanent damage to cars after the water becomes acidic. This has happened to at least one car so far.

The situation may improve when the courtyard is waterproofed in March, but this is no guarantee until after construction is fully completed.

We felt it was important to communicate this to you so that you are aware and can make alternate parking arrangements outside the garage if you so choose. Note that there will be no recourse for anyone sustaining damage to their vehicle in the garage, per the release that everyone signed.

Thank you.

Trace Lofts

For those not familiar with the Trace complex, there are two buildings. Trace Lofts is the old warehouse that sits on the south end of the lot and is mostly sold and occupied. Trace North is the new building on the north end of the lot that is still under construction. Parking is shared in a parking garage that is under both buildings. My stall is in a spot that is under the new building. And yes, I did sign an early access agreement [pdf].

Now if I were Trace and sitting on a large number of unsold units in a down market and had an issue with an early adopter who took a chance and bought early I would first inform people of the danger as soon as I found out about it and not sit on the bad news for several weeks hoping Matt didn’t get any acid on him. Sure, Trace, might not be liable because of something the residents signed a long time ago, but it’s the right thing to do when someone is facing permanent damage to their vehicle. Secondly, there are still a number of parking stalls available as there are unsold Trace Lofts units. Some of these stalls are presumably under Trace Lofts which does not have the water migrating acid leaking problem. Why not offer affected residents the opportunity to temporarily park in a safer stall instead of suggesting we should go rent a $100/month parking spot elsewhere?

We’re your best sales team, keeping us spreading the good word of Trace should be a top priority for the Trace developer and marketing team.

When faced with a difficult situation I don’t think its too much to ask that developers ‘do the right thing’ and ask how they would want to be treated if they were on the receiving end of a similar situation.

In other 12th and Madison news: I went to Boom Noodle the new restaurant underneath Agnes Lofts last night (it opened on the 2nd.) The noodles were good but even though I also had desert I was still hungry two hours later; not promising. But once the place gets their liquor license I suspect it will be a nice relatively upscale hang out for Capitol Hill yuppies.

While waiting for the always late #12 bus yesterday and today I noticed a land use sign. Looks like they are tearing down 1210 11th Ave:



Here’s the land use notice for 48 housing units and retail:



They’re on the verge of completing the burying of the power lines directly across from me. I can’t wait to stop being woken up at 7:30. Now if only my neighbor would stop sleeping through their alarm…

I own and manage Urban Living, a boutique Seattle and Bellevue real estate brokerage. I love lofts, floating homes, new construction, and mid-century moderns, but I will help you buy or sell just about anything!

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