Princeton University

November Meeting Minutes

Topics of Discussion:

  1. Safety Concerns: There will be a formal safety meeting this coming Thursday with representatives from the Housing Committees, and University officials. The Lawrence Committee will have a representative attending this meeting. The meeting will involve a tour of the housing grounds and discussion of safety concerns. The committee discussed safety issues to mention at this meeting:
    1. Lighting in our complex: It is dark near Karin Court, and difficult to avoid hitting pedestrians. It is also dark on Alexander Rd when walking home. We want to find out if we can get more lighting.
    2. Pedestrian Cross Walks: There is a small area at the entrance of our complex where there is no sidewalk. We want to find out if it would be possible to paint pedestrian cross walk signs on the road, or instead, to simply increase signage reminding drivers of pedestrians.
    3. Bike Thefts: Many reports of bike thefts have occurred campus wide, including at our complex. Police have caught some people taking bikes on the train to Trenton. We asked about whether it would be possible to install either real or fake “decoy” security cameras near the bike rack to discourage theft. Public Safety has indicated that this solution is not possible, but that they have made a large arrest in recent months which has decreased the frequency of bike thefts.
    4. Golf Balls by Lawrence 12-14: There is a small part of the net for the golf course that dips down near building 14. As a result, sometimes golf balls come over the net and into Lawrence. This could be a problem for children playing outside. We have been in touch with Olivia Martel regarding this issue, who has informed us that the University is already aware and is looking into how to solve this problem with the golf course.
    5. Garden lock: Vegetables have been stolen and damaged throughout the gardening season. We have been in touch with Chris Warkala recently, who is making it a priority to have a combination lock put on the garden as soon as possible.
  2. Policy for Lost Items: Recently, there have been multiple incidents of residents losing valuable items in the parking lot, such as car keys and wedding bands. The committee has discussed a uniform “policy” that we intend to follow for lost items in the future.
    1. The policy: we will take any items of value to Public Safety at 100 Elm St, and then we will communicate with residents that the item has been found and is at Public Safety. Communication will most likely be via email or our website if we have a high volume of these scenarios. Most of the time, however, we will indicate lost items that are found with “tags” on the Lawrence Apartments website. We intend to have a 24 hour turn-around time for this entire process.
    2. Lost and Found boxes: There is a lost and found box in the Lawrence Building 14 computer cluster room. Residents should look for lost items that are not of particular value in these boxes.
  3. Information about our meeting times: Residents should note that the committee meets on the second Tuesday of every month at 6pm in the Lawrence 1 community room. This information is on our homepage in the right hand column, and also on our website under “basic information”:
    1. Electronic communication of meeting times: The committee usually reminds residents of meeting times 1-2 days in advance via email. We will be sure to send all future reminders of regular meetings a full 2 days in advance of the meeting.
    2. Election meeting: The committee will have its annual election meeting in January, during normal monthly meeting time (The second Tuesday at 6pm in Lawrence Building 1). Residents will receive an e-mail shortly reminding them of the upcoming election meeting. In order to run for office, residents must have attended 2 committee meetings, including the election meeting. This information will be included in the reminder e-mail.
  4. Communication of Important Issues to Residents: The committee wants to insure that the concerns we address are concerns held by the majority of residents, and not by a vocal minority. In addition to voting on issues within the committee, the committee will send monthly polls to residents asking opinions on the biggest issue discussed at the committee meeting.
    1. Monthly Opinion Poll: After the meeting, the committee will pick the biggest discussed issue requiring action, and will send a poll to residents asking their opinion on the matter. The poll will be sent out with a link to the monthly minutes. Residents should note that while the Lawrence Committee can and does raise Lawrence resident concerns to the University administration, Princeton is still a very complex place and sometimes change takes longer than we would like. This month’s poll will concern a proposal for activities or infrastructure to increase a sense of community among residents.
    2. Transparency: The committee wants to increase communication regarding why the University makes certain decisions to either act on, or not act on, our express concerns. This transparency will help residents to understand why some requests are answered and others denied. We hope that if this transparency is clearly recorded in the minutes, the committee of future years will not have to continually revisit the same concerns on which progress is not likely to be made, and can instead focus on areas in which change is possible.
  5. Dumpsters: The recycling dumpster by Lawrence 1 tends to be overflowing on the weekend. Chris Warkala has asked Building Services to put a recycling sticker on the “extra” dumpster in this trash area, in hopes of fixing this issue.
  6. Shopping Carts: The shopping carts are often not returned to their proper locations. The committee has e-mailed residents reminding them to return carts, and indicating the locations in which carts should be stored. Since this action has not helped the cart situation much, we have asked Chris Warkala to have the carts labeled with signs indicating they belong to Lawrence Apartments, and should be returned to designated locations.
  7. EPA Clean up on Basin Street: This cleanup is proceeding on schedule, and is intended to be completed by the end of December.

A.J. Riggs
Allison Chaney
Lauren Anllo
Dima Gorenshteyn
Sema Berkiten
Burcin Cakir
Xiaoyu Tang