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New Construction

Lease / purchase

Phase 3: The construction of the remaining 11 residences.

Scheduled to begin in November with completion expected
by January 31.

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Progress Report

Mar. 14-19, 2005 // CONSTRUCTION LOG #23

CONSTRUCTION

Synopsis: The main priority this week was advancing Unit 108, working with the purchaser of 108 for final finishing decisions, and reviewing the project status with my partner.

Unit 108: All exterior work was completed including landscaping. Doors and kitchen cabinets are installed, cabinets-wall units / entertainment units / storage units are in various stages of installation. The owner has now made all the remaining finishing decisions (many of which I believe will yield stunning results) and we will proceed to install. This will take another full week before all is completed and even then we might have a few things, like etched, tempered glass shower doors to finish. The owner made two decisions which required modifications-removal of one door and a different type of vanity (bowl and faucet). I guess I'm fortunate in interpreting his wants-between the internet, digital photos and perhaps some commonality in wants-guess we had most of it right.

New Construction

We have decided to make ready for the soon expected removal of the stop work order by reading the flooring preparations and pre-welding a number of structural beams.

Laundry Room: the last remaining laundry room to be built is 75% completed. A few more days and it will be finished.

Permit: A continuous series of stupid frustrations. The revised plans were received, photo copied, signed again by the architect, and even though the electrical plans did not change, those plans had to be resigned by the electrical engineer. Then some idiot decided the photocopies were not dark enough so all 4 sets had to be redone (here it seems that form is more important than content and substance). They are now back in the hands of the first government review agency, and are likely to effectively remain there until after Semana Santa-Holy Week--/Easter which is this entire week coming. I have lots of opinions and observations about this process but will keep them to myself and limit my comments to the identifiable events.

Note: While this has been and continues to be a frustrating and at time infuriating experience, in retrospect, it has been very beneficial. It has allowed us to focus on the renovations which captured the hearts of a number of people. This market acceptance has allowed us to modify what would have otherwise been cast in cement and steel . Instead, we have been able to adjust our product offering (see section below).

Project Review and New Direction: After discussions with my partner, we have decided to build three detached, two story houses in the front of the property where the footings have not yet been laid and to build two, semi-detached, two story houses on the area now occupied by Unit 106. Architectural designs should begin to emerge this next week. We have also decided to probably finish off the internal roadways with cement pavers -it seems to be the covering of choice both here and in North America.

Marketing: Units 114 and 116 have been spoken for.

OUR LIVES

Our lives this week have been dominated by the presence of my partner and the purchaser of 108. My partner continues to be supportive, insightful, and with our respective construction experience we were quickly able to make and agree on decisions. Working with the purchaser of 108 was also a useful learning experience in that their personal tastes provided me with information which I'll consider incorporating into the finishings of the new units -there are some new bathroom vanity designs which are, according to the purchaser, not available in Canada.

Lita has continued to dedicate herself to the gym and to loosing weight. She's making some progress but never realized that the progress would be so slow and the work so hard.

Gino's pizza continues to be delicious and even more so with our brought bottle of wine. Saturday night saw us at a new Brazilian restaurant-all you can eat salad bar and 4 types of grilled meat brought to the table on skewers and then portions are sliced off. Unfortunately, it's still Costa Rican beef -enough said. The salad bar was fine but not very extensive, the meat was so-so, the presentations was great, but the best part of all was the dessert-it's to return for.

Hugo spends most of his time sleeping on his back with all four paws in the air and the parrot continues to squawk at every opportunity. I nearly stepped on the little bugger -he was trying to weigh himself on the scales I had purchased for Lita. I've enjoyed developing a few more creative suggestions as to how to deal with the parrot -the latest one is to leave a tube of polyurethane glue where he could get to it and maybe he would eat it and glue is beak shut! Or walk in it and glue himself to one spot! That would be a step in the right direction and I could always claim to Lita that it was the parrots fault -not mine!

As a result of guests and presents, I now have 4 types of specialty scotches -I don't remember ever having such a selection- and a box of Montecristo #2 Havana cigars as well as my nice CR cigars. Wow!!!! Never have I had such an opportunity and I don't remember when I've had less chance to enjoy it. If I could just get to the hammock, I'm sure that it would never have feet better!!!

This coming week we have a friend and former business partner visiting CR; he won't be staying on the property as we don't have any space but we will be enjoying his company. This is also Semana Santa -Holy Week- and it is the biggest holiday of the year. Many businesses are closed the whole week, although officially the holidays start on Thursday. We will work through Wednesday although I suspect with a reduced crew.

Brian, Lita, Hugo, and Vicka

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