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 Post subject: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 11:10 am 
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We are looking for an apartment downtown and are thinking of the Dominion Building on Queen St.

The location is ideal, but we have friends who have friends who live there (but not much longer) that tell us that their friends are pretty disgusted with the place. Here are some of the stories we have been told.

They say that they are paying a premium price in what is billed as a luxury apartment building but that the building has been plagued with plumbing problems (pipes bursting and causing severe damage to apartments), lack of security (vagrants roaming the halls), poor materials and workmanship (defective countertops or countertops yet to be installed in units that have been occupied for months, leaky windows, poor paint quality with no primer -- apparently if you try to clean the walls with mild soap and water, the paint starts to ripple then peel off). Their friends have been paying for underground parking and storage lockers since they moved in but completion of the parking and lockers is still months away and they get nowhere asking for that portion of their rent back.

But we are told that the worst part is that the company that owns the place is over in Halifax and the guy they hired to oversee things here in Charlottetown has mental health issues and a drug problem.

I guess what I am asking is: can anyone confirm these stories? Does anyone on this board know anyone who lives there? I have trouble believing that the owner could be so slack about a place that is billed as luxury apartments. The place also houses a high profile law firm so you wouldn't think they would tolerate a situation like that. The location is so perfect for us and we certainly hope that the stories are exagerated.

Thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 11:14 am 
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Haven't heard any of those stories to be honest.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 11:29 am 
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I actually live in that building ... and unfortunately can confirm that most of those stories are not untrue. I am reluctant to discuss these issues in a public forum so if you want to PM me, we can discuss it privately. I can say that things are starting to look up now that ownership is aware of the local management issue and that hopefully within the next 6 months or so, we will start getting the value that we are paying for.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 11:57 am 
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Well thats a bummer. Appreciate the offer to talk in private but knowing that our friends' friends aren't exagerating is all we need to know for now.

Guess we should be looking elsewhere :(


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 1:12 pm 
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By the by, this thread gives me the opportunity to advise PEIinfo members about something.

For years and years, theatre and club goers have used the parking lot behind the Dominion Building on evenings and weekends on the presumption that since it was office parking and the offices were closed, no harm no foul.

However, the parking lot is now used for resident parking and with the ongoing delays in completing the underground parking garage, the above ground lot can barely even accomodate the needs of the residents and with the winter overnight parking restrictions now in effect residents don't have the option of street parking when the lot is filled with club/theatre patrons, so the owners have gotten serious about enforcing the "resident parking only" signs and are having unauthorized vehicles towed. I understand that it costs about $130 to get your vehicle out of impound when that happens.

Forewarned is forearmed.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 3:03 pm 
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TopHat wrote:
Well thats a bummer. Appreciate the offer to talk in private but knowing that our friends' friends aren't exagerating is all we need to know for now.

Guess we should be looking elsewhere :(
Harbourside Apts. might be of interest to you, they are not new and nowhere near as updated (no washer & dryer in apt., white appliances, only one bathroom) as the ones in Dominion Sq. but the locatation, view, 24-7 security, underground parking, on the site maintance crew, quiet, make up for it. As for them being older, some paint and adding your own touches can work quite well.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 5:26 pm 
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kreskin wrote:
I actually live in that building ... and unfortunately can confirm that most of those stories are not untrue. I am reluctant to discuss these issues in a public forum so if you want to PM me, we can discuss it privately. I can say that things are starting to look up now that ownership is aware of the local management issue and that hopefully within the next 6 months or so, we will start getting the value that we are paying for.
Just wondering if there are private balconeys off the apts. at the Dominion Bldg? They are advertised as having balconeys but I took a good look all around the outside of the building and can't see how this is possible. I was told they were all rented so didn't call to go look at one.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 5:29 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 8:04 pm 
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Sandi wrote:
Just wondering if there are private balconeys off the apts. at the Dominion Bldg? They are advertised as having balconeys but I took a good look all around the outside of the building and can't see how this is possible. I was told they were all rented so didn't call to go look at one.

There are only 10 units that have balconies/decks and they are all on the second floor. There are six on Richmond St. and 4 on the inside of the "L" on the roof of what used to be the post office. There is also a small common deck in that area ... I've been told that the original plans called for a large common deck atop the 6th floor but that Cox & Palmer wanted that whole deck area for themselves, so the other 46 units have to share the smaller area on the second floor in the picture below (that's the Royal Bank across Sydney St)

Image

One of the 4 private deck apartments in this area is for rent.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 9:30 pm 
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Thanks for the reply. This deck looks lovely, and it is kinda nice to share and get to meet your neighbours. I know that building is completely smoke-free and no pets allowed, I don't mind if someone is visiting and they go out on my deck to have a cigarette, & I have a cat, no pets rule here, too, but for some reason my landlord lets me have her. I also had no idea that there were problems at Dominion Sq. Think I will stay where I am. One thing I do know for sure is that I don't regret, for one minute, leaving my big two storey home with all the bells and whistles for apt. living. Only thing I miss is my washer and dryer, don't much like the laundry room drill, LOL.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 15th, 2012, 9:51 pm 
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Sandi wrote:
Thanks for the reply. This deck looks lovely, and it is kinda nice to share and get to meet your neighbours. I know that building is completely smoke-free and no pets allowed, I don't mind if someone is visiting and they go out on my deck to have a cigarette, & I have a cat, no pets rule here, too, but for some reason my landlord lets me have her. I also had no idea that there were problems at Dominion Sq. Think I will stay where I am. One thing I do know for sure is that I don't regret, for one minute, leaving my big two storey home with all the bells and whistles for apt. living. Only thing I miss is my washer and dryer, don't much like the laundry room drill, LOL.

Actually, pets ARE allowed. Would have been a deal breaker for us if they weren't :)

I hear you about the house ... no more mowing, snowblowing, shovelling, gardening. Don't miss it at all!! (Glad that we do have our own washer/dryer here.)


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 16th, 2012, 8:19 am 
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kreskin wrote:
[I hear you about the house ... no more mowing, snowblowing, shovelling, gardening. Don't miss it at all!! (Glad that we do have our own washer/dryer here.)

What about that fantastic Tub??

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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 16th, 2012, 8:23 am 
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chtnman wrote:
kreskin wrote:
[I hear you about the house ... no more mowing, snowblowing, shovelling, gardening. Don't miss it at all!! (Glad that we do have our own washer/dryer here.)

What about that fantastic Tub??

Okay, I miss our fantastic tub :(


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 16th, 2012, 10:20 pm 
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I am a soon to be former resident of the Dominion Building. The last 6 months have been hell for us. There was still a lot of work to be done on our apartment when we moved (when we signed our lease, we were assured that it would be ready) and we had to put up with workwen entering our apartment without warning when we were there (we were in bed one time) and when we weren't there. How were they getting in? Seems the idiot property manager had given master keys to just about every worker in the building, most keys still unaccounted for months after most of the interior work was completed. Makes one feel real safe that there are dozens of master keys to all the apartments floating around Charlottetown. They promised weeks ago that they would replace the locks but nothing yet. Then there were the floods. Four or five minor ones occured before the big one that completely ruined 8 or 9 of the apartments (and contents) and put a bunch of people out in the streets, so to speak. It took First On Site about two months to repair all the damage. The units being advertised now are those units. After a vagrant kept getting into the building, someone the police said might be dangerous, they promised to install video cameras. We thought they did, but we found out later that they were fake cameras and they weren't even positioned where people might see them and think they were on camera. The security doors are a joke. If I have learned nothing over the last few months it is that the owners don't seem to give a dam about the safety of the tenants. Talking to other tenants and hearing some of their stories make me think I got off pretty good compared to the crap that they have been put through. And the idiot property manager, who the owner can't fire because he was part of the deal with Cox & Palmer (hint: daddy's little boy), has a breakdown when the big flood happened. Turns out he has mental health issues and according to many has been a 'snorter' since high school. Earlier this week there was a tenants meeting (didn't go since I am leaving anyway but I heard about it from many people) and an elderly (80's) frail woman asked a question that somehow set him off (he wasn't invited, he doesn't live their, it was a meeting of tenants to among other things plan a Christmas social) and he tore a strip off her and had everyone in shock as she nearly came to tears. When the incident was reported to the owners in Halifax, they basicly said 'so what?'

So yeah, avoid this place at all costs. I can't stress this enough. Tell anyone you know. I thought that having owners from Halifax would mean they would be more professional than the majority of Charlottetown landlords. Hah! These Halifaxers make Charlottetown slum landlords look good.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 17th, 2012, 5:15 pm 
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FormerDominionBldg wrote:
I am a soon to be former resident of the Dominion Building. The last 6 months have been hell for us. There was still a lot of work to be done on our apartment when we moved (when we signed our lease, we were assured that it would be ready) and we had to put up with workwen entering our apartment without warning when we were there (we were in bed one time) and when we weren't there. How were they getting in? Seems the idiot property manager had given master keys to just about every worker in the building, most keys still unaccounted for months after most of the interior work was completed. Makes one feel real safe that there are dozens of master keys to all the apartments floating around Charlottetown. They promised weeks ago that they would replace the locks but nothing yet. Then there were the floods. Four or five minor ones occured before the big one that completely ruined 8 or 9 of the apartments (and contents) and put a bunch of people out in the streets, so to speak. It took First On Site about two months to repair all the damage. The units being advertised now are those units. After a vagrant kept getting into the building, someone the police said might be dangerous, they promised to install video cameras. We thought they did, but we found out later that they were fake cameras and they weren't even positioned where people might see them and think they were on camera. The security doors are a joke. If I have learned nothing over the last few months it is that the owners don't seem to give a dam about the safety of the tenants. Talking to other tenants and hearing some of their stories make me think I got off pretty good compared to the crap that they have been put through. And the idiot property manager, who the owner can't fire because he was part of the deal with Cox & Palmer (hint: daddy's little boy), has a breakdown when the big flood happened. Turns out he has mental health issues and according to many has been a 'snorter' since high school. Earlier this week there was a tenants meeting (didn't go since I am leaving anyway but I heard about it from many people) and an elderly (80's) frail woman asked a question that somehow set him off (he wasn't invited, he doesn't live their, it was a meeting of tenants to among other things plan a Christmas social) and he tore a strip off her and had everyone in shock as she nearly came to tears. When the incident was reported to the owners in Halifax, they basicly said 'so what?'

So yeah, avoid this place at all costs. I can't stress this enough. Tell anyone you know. I thought that having owners from Halifax would mean they would be more professional than the majority of Charlottetown landlords. Hah! These Halifaxers make Charlottetown slum landlords look good.


:shock:


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 17th, 2012, 5:57 pm 
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kreskin wrote:
I hear you about the house ... no more mowing, snowblowing, shovelling, gardening. Don't miss it at all!! (Glad that we do have our own washer/dryer here.)

Would it not be cheaper to hire someone to do all that, and why garden if you didn't enjoy it? Anyway I do envy the deck and the view. Communal or not, it must be nice to sit there with neighbors and chat.

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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 17th, 2012, 6:07 pm 
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betamaxman wrote:
Would it not be cheaper to hire someone to do all that, and why garden if you didn't enjoy it?

Not so much that we didn't enjoy it, more that our health issues were making the upkeep of the extensive gardens we had developed over the years too hard on us. We had been considering hiring someone to keep up the yardwork until we were ready to downsize and simplify our lives ... but when the opportunity arose to get into an apartment that suited us to a "T", we felt we couldn't take a chance to pass it up. On the plus side, it was the gardens were an important factor in the people who bought our house offering us our asking price within hours of it going on the market.

betamaxman wrote:
Anyway I do envy the deck and the view. Communal or not, it must be nice to sit there with neighbors and chat.

Oh it is ... our private deck is used even more than the communal deck :D \:D/


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 17th, 2012, 9:42 pm 
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There is a market for downtown apartments in Charlottetown, judging from the comments on this page. It's too bad that property costs seem to result in the construction of Condo units that many people find beyond their means.

The mixture residential apartment units and downtown businesses may be a model the city planners may want to look at especially with a bus system now available.

I don't have a clear vision of what the model would look like, but I think with an aging population looking to downsize and simplify it might be something worth discussing.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 19th, 2012, 2:10 pm 
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Sandi wrote:
TopHat wrote:
Well thats a bummer. Appreciate the offer to talk in private but knowing that our friends' friends aren't exagerating is all we need to know for now.

Guess we should be looking elsewhere :(
Harbourside Apts. might be of interest to you, they are not new and nowhere near as updated (no washer & dryer in apt., white appliances, only one bathroom) as the ones in Dominion Sq. but the locatation, view, 24-7 security, underground parking, on the site maintance crew, quiet, make up for it. As for them being older, some paint and adding your own touches can work quite well.

Thanks.

We've decided to stay put for at least the winter months and check around in the spring. I'll keep Harbourside in mind.


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 Post subject: Re: Dominion Building
PostPosted: November 19th, 2012, 2:36 pm 
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islanderatheart wrote:
There is a market for downtown apartments in Charlottetown, judging from the comments on this page. It's too bad that property costs seem to result in the construction of Condo units that many people find beyond their means.

The mixture residential apartment units and downtown businesses may be a model the city planners may want to look at especially with a bus system now available.

I don't have a clear vision of what the model would look like, but I think with an aging population looking to downsize and simplify it might be something worth discussing.

Absolutely!!!

I think the people developing condos may be missing the boat.


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