News

REO Update February 2021

Even in a pandemic, life at RSE continues on. Our primary asset, the National Register of Historic Places registered 1501 Sage Ave, continues to wait for the return of RSE members to the building. As part of the AAC work we are excited to be discussing future possibilities for our historic structure.

There are always some issues that need to be dealt with however, especially in our building. On Christmas morning one of our fire alarm sensors failed, and we owe Mark Anderson ‘79 a tremendous thank you for coming to the House in the early pre-dawn hours to deal with the alarm. The sensor that failed has historically been troublesome and will be upgraded it this spring.

One of the risks we have always had is a critical system failure occurring while the membership wasn’t around. During the last 9 years significant work has been performed on the building, and improving 1501’s ability to withstand failure has always been an objective. With the significant efforts of Kevin Schaefer ‘85 the plumbing and drainage systems were redesigned and upgraded. This work paid significant dividends on January 11th when the circulator in our hot water boiler failed, spraying water all over the boiler room. This water spray was landing on the heating boiler, which shut the heat off.

1501 Sage now has multiple methods to remotely detect issues. When the alarms triggered, a heating technician was dispatched, who arrived to discover 2-3” of water in the boiler room and a solid stream of water pouring out of the damaged system. Before our upgrades of the last decade this would have been a catastrophic failure – generations of RSE members recall the basement flooding repeatedly, and the impact that had on the building. With the new drainage systems, including specific drains in the boiler room and surrounding hallways, even this dramatic flow of water was drained away in real time. Instead of discovering a frozen house and a basement filled with feet of standing water, the water was limited to just the boiler room and adjacent food locker.

The work in 2015 included shutoff valves throughout the building. So it only took minutes to isolate the damaged hot water system and stop the leak. Within a few hours, the heating boiler had been examined, serviced and was back in operation. The hot water system is going to be repaired and placed back into operation soon. I want to thank all the members who have assisted us with the upgrades and repairs to the building, especially generations of JM House Managers without whom this work would have been far more difficult. Currently we are beginning to make plans to bring the building back to an operational status. Until then know that our house is being cared for, and is secure. All alumni are still welcome to come and visit, just contact the Charlie Adkins ’94 to get the necessary access codes.

TSIMS.

Charlie Adkins ‘94
Real Estate Officer
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.