September 4

Regulator extends mortgage payment holiday ahead of lockdown

first_imgMonday 2 November 2020 8:42 pm Some 2.5 million people have already taken a payment holiday on their mortgage since March, according to figures from industry body UK Finance. Borrowers who have not yet had a payment holiday lasting up to six months, while those who have an initial deferral will be eligible for another payment for up to three months. Angharad Carrick The FCA is also proposing that no one will have their home repossessed without their agreement until after 31 January 2021. For buy-to-let mortgage owners, the process may be harder as the holiday regulations are not covered by the FCA, however, landlords with tenants who have been financially affected by the pandemic may be covered. Also Read: Regulator extends mortgage payment holiday ahead of lockdown Debt reprieve Share For buy-to-let mortgage owners, the process may be harder as the holiday regulations are not covered by the FCA, however, landlords with tenants who have been financially affected by the pandemic may be covered. The furlough scheme, which sees the government pay 80 per cent of employees’ wages, has been extended for another month. And the government has extended applications for its coronavirus business support loan schemes. The financial watchdog has proposed an extension of the mortgage payment holiday for borrowers struggling to make payments, ahead of a second national lockdown. “It is in borrowers’ own long-term interest only to take a payment deferral when absolutely necessary. Those that are able to keep paying, should do so. This allows support to be targeted to those most in need.” It comes as the Chancellor Rishi Sunak outlined further support for businesses today following the Prime Minister’s lockdown announcement over the weekend.center_img Sheldon Mills, interim Executive Director of Strategy and Competition at the FCA said: “Tailored support will still be offered and remains the most appropriate option for many borrowers, but we are proposing to extend payment deferrals for additional support. We also want to make sure no one has their home repossessed during this time.” The FCA has also extended payment holidays on credit cards, car finance, personal loans and pawnbroking. As with mortgage holidays, consumers who had not yet had a payment deferral under guidance issued in July would be able to request payment holiday lasting up to six months.  Applications for the Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS), Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) and Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) will now be open until 31 January, the Treasury said.  whatsapp More From Our Partners ‘Neighbor from hell’ faces new charges after scaring off home buyersnypost.comAstounding Fossil Discovery in California After Man Looks Closelygoodnewsnetwork.orgFlorida woman allegedly crashes children’s birthday party, rapes teennypost.comBrave 7-Year-old Boy Swims an Hour to Rescue His Dad and Little Sistergoodnewsnetwork.orgA ProPublica investigation has caused outrage in the U.S. this weekvaluewalk.comBiden received funds from top Russia lobbyist before Nord Stream 2 giveawaynypost.comPolice Capture Elusive Tiger Poacher After 20 Years of Pursuing the Huntergoodnewsnetwork.orgRussell Wilson, AOC among many voicing support for Naomi Osakacbsnews.comNative American Tribe Gets Back Sacred Island Taken 160 Years Agogoodnewsnetwork.orgI blew off Adam Sandler 22 years ago — and it’s my biggest regretnypost.comSupermodel Anne Vyalitsyna claims income drop, pushes for child supportnypost.comWhy people are finding dryer sheets in their mailboxesnypost.comConnecticut man dies after crashing Harley into live bearnypost.comKiller drone ‘hunted down a human target’ without being told tonypost.com980-foot skyscraper sways in China, prompting panic and evacuationsnypost.comUK teen died on school trip after teachers allegedly refused her pleasnypost.comBill Gates reportedly hoped Jeffrey Epstein would help him win a Nobelnypost.comMark Eaton, former NBA All-Star, dead at 64nypost.com Regulator extends mortgage payment holiday ahead of lockdown The regulator has asked borrowers not to contact their lender until the enhanced measures are in place. Under the proposals, consumers would have until 31 January 2021 to apply for a payment holiday. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has set out proposals to support consumers through a second lockdown. whatsapp Show Comments ▼ For buy-to-let mortgage owners, the process may be harder as the holiday regulations are not covered by the FCA, however, landlords with tenants who have been financially affected by the pandemic may be covered. Also Read: Regulator extends mortgage payment holiday ahead of lockdown Tags: UK house priceslast_img read more

August 24

More snow and rain, temperature swings are formula for higher avalanche risk

first_imgEnvironment | Juneau | OutdoorsMore snow and rain, temperature swings are formula for higher avalanche riskJanuary 27, 2020 by Matt Miller, KTOO Share:Ski guide Ed Shanley pauses while digging a snowpit just outside the boundaries at Eaglecrest Ski Area on Jan. 20, 2020. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)Already this winter, at least seven people have been reported caught in avalanches around Alaska. Of those, two people were killed near Haines just before New Year’s Eve.What about avalanche conditions in the Juneau area right now?Audio Playerhttps://media.ktoo.org/2020/01/25aval.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.“We’re just about down to the ground here,” said Ed Shanley after he takes a portable shovel out of his backpack and digs into the season’s snowpack just outside the ski boundaries at Eaglecrest Ski area.A big rectangular pit starts taking shape. It’s almost 3 feet deep, with perfectly straight vertical sides.Shanley said he doesn’t use this kind of test to justify doing something risky.“You should always be kind of trying to find instability,” he said. “That’s kind of the mindset that I take.”That’s why he may dig as many as ten snow pits each day.Shanley is a part-time avalanche technician for a utility company. But his main winter gig is as a guide for a local heli-skiing company.  When he’s done digging and shoveling snow, he points out the different layers, like a geologist who uses a fossil record to determine the age of rock going back in time. Looking at each deeper snow layer tells a story about the winter.He starts with the top 5 inches.“You can see that there’s new snow we just got,” Shanley said. “There’s a little bit of a crust here, which is what I think was left over from the wind.”Mid-January’s high winds and cold snap compacted the snow into an inch-and-a-half heavy, hard layer. Underneath that, a layer of coarse snow that comes apart very easily in Shanley’s hand.“And it’s turning into this weak, faceted snow crystals,” Shanley said. “So, that’s like not a very good set up. You don’t have a huge load on it or anything. If you had an avalanche, it’d be pretty shallow.”That snow layer is the weakest. Below that, about two feet of December’s frozen rain and ice all the way down to the soil.Ski guide Ed Shanley digs a snowpit just outside the boundaries at Eaglecrest Ski Area on Jan. 20, 2020. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)With a handsaw, Shanley cuts a long block along an edge of the pit. He gently sets the blade of the shovel flat on top and taps it with his finger, repeatedly.Eventually, the top two layers of the block shear or shift a tiny fraction of an inch down and out.  That’s the instability Shanley was looking for which could start an avalanche.“If we were on a steeper location, that probably would’ve fallen into the pit,” he said.At the time, Shanley said it wasn’t a great snowpack, not horrible either.But after the past week’s weather with more snow, rain and higher temperatures? He said the avalanche hazard was trending higher.  Still,  warmer temperatures could also break down some of the layers and actually help long-term stability.Come down out of the mountains and into downtown Juneau and “we were seeing some small avalanches around the region and wet, loose avalanches,” said City and Borough of Juneau avalanche forecaster Tom Mattice.Mattice said there’s always more danger of an avalanche with additional snow and rain.That weak layer still exists. But, so far, he said the snowpack is still fairly thin.(Graphic Courtesy Backcountry Access)“The danger is not incredibly high right now in the backcountry,” Mattice said. “(But) in the areas down low – as you’re hiking along Perseverance Trail, as you’re hiking along the Flume Trail – there’s some concern. But it takes huge avalanches to get down to there.”Shanley said avalanches are likely to start on any slope over 30 degrees, under a rounded outcropping called a convex rollover, or near a cornice.And they’re most likely to happen right after high winds, big rainfall or a snow storm, or during big changes in temperature.Shanley said keep an eye out for warning signs like big cracks in the snow. And, listen for a hollow drum sound on hard snow or the tell-tale WHUMPH!(Editor’s note: Corrected number of fatalities in Haines avalanche and spelling of Ed Shanley’s name.)Share this story:last_img read more

July 13

European markets dip as quantitative easing begins

first_img Share whatsapp European markets dip as quantitative easing begins Emma Haslett European markets fell in early trading as the European Central Bank finally launched its €60bn-a-month (£43bn) quantitative easing programme.The FTSE 100 fell 0.59 per cent, while Germany’s Dax dropped 0.39 per cent and France’s Cac fell 0.61 per cent, as investors showed their caution over the programme, which is designed to lift Europe out of deflation. Having dipped against the dollar to 1.0830, the euro rallied in late morning, rising 0.5 per cent to $1.0892.Bloomberg reported that the ECB had begun its programme with the purchase of German bunds. The announcement caused yields on German 10-year bunds to fall to 0.38 per cent. Meanwhile, yields on Spanish 10-year debt fell to 1.28 per cent.New worries about Greece also caused early trading to remain muted. European leaders were again unimpressed with new reform measures laid out by Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis in a letter over the weekend, which included hiring tourists as tax inspectors and a new “fiscal council” to monitor government spending . He suggested that if its plans are rejected again the country may call a referendum.Finance ministers from the 19-nation bloc will meet again today to determine whether the measures are sufficient to unlock its latest payment, needed to help with an IMF debt repayment due later this week. center_img Monday 9 March 2015 7:02 am Show Comments ▼ whatsapp Tags: Eurozone inflation Quantitative easinglast_img read more

June 21

Deputy catches Fort Myers woman snorting cocaine at gas pump

first_imgDeputies investigate overnight shooting in Golden Gate June 10, 2021 AdvertisementRecommended ArticlesBrie Larson Reportedly Replacing Robert Downey Jr. As The Face Of The MCURead more81 commentsGal Gadot Reportedly Being Recast As Wonder Woman For The FlashRead more29 comments Missing Collier teen seen with man at Fort Myers Publix June 11, 2021 AdvertisementDC Young Fly knocks out heckler (video) – Rolling OutRead more6 comments’Mortal Kombat’ Exceeded Expectations Says WarnerMedia ExecutiveRead more2 commentsDo You Remember Bob’s Big Boy?Read more1 commentsKISS Front Man Paul Stanley Reveals This Is The End Of KISS As A Touring Band, For RealRead more1 comments Hammond opened the door and the deputy saw a small blue empty bag along the driver-side door and recognized it as the kind of bag that is typically used to package and transport illegal drugs.Hammond told the deputy she had just stopped to get ice cream and was getting ready to go home. She also said she came to Naples to get things out of her storage unit. According to the sheriff’s office, the brown substance tested positive for heroin. Inside the pink pouch were plastic bags containing white powdery substances and crystal-like substances and plastic bags containing tan powder substances.The white powdery substances tested positive for cocaine and the crystal-like substance tested positive for methamphetamine. Hammond is also facing misdemeanor charges of possession of narcotic paraphernalia and possession of a controlled substance after she was allegedly found in possession of glass smoking pipes, syringes, and a bottle of oxycodone pills prescribed to someone else. Advertisement Advertisement AdvertisementTags: CocaineCollier County Sheriff’s OfficeNorth Naples Woman shot outside Naples Waffle House June 16, 2021 AdvertisementAs he walked up to the car, the deputy reportedly saw Hammond leaning toward her center console and sniffing an “unknown substance.”A clear bag containing a brown substance and a shiny pink couch were in plain view by the console.The deputy knocked on the woman’s window and when Hammond turned to look at him, he saw a white powdery substance on her face. Collier school resource officers teach kids how to fish on first day of “Summerfest” June 16, 2021 RELATEDTOPICS COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. – A Collier County deputy allegedly caught a woman snorting cocaine in her car while parked at a gas pump in North Naples on Sunday. The Fort Myers woman, 54-year-old Ilene Pamela Hammond, is facing charges of possession of heroine more than 10 grams, possession of cocaine and possession of amphetamine. A Collier County deputy was conducting traffic enforcement in the area of Pine Ridge Road and Shirley Street around 12:30 a.m. when he saw a white Nissan Maxima parked at a gas pump at 7-Eleven. A woman, later identified as Hammon, was in the driver’s seat of the car. The deputy noticed no one had gotten in and out of the car in a while, so he attempted to make contact with the driver.last_img read more

June 16

Police charge man after sending threatening emails to Victorian MP

first_imgPolice charge man after sending threatening emails to Victorian MP A man will face court today after being charged over threatening emails allegedly sent to a Victorian government official last year.Late last year, the Fixated Persons Investigation Unit commenced an investigation following reports a member of Victorian parliament had received threatening emails, which were believed to have been sent from NSW.Following extensive inquiries, police executed a search warrant at a home at Nimbin about Monday 7 December 2020, where they seized a number of electronic devices, a computer, a tablet and a mobile phone for forensic examination.A 53-year-old man was arrested at the home and taken to Lismore Police Station, where he was charged with use carriage service to threaten to kill and two counts of use carriage service to menace/harass/offend.He was granted strict conditional bail and is due to appear at Lismore Local Court today (Monday 11 January 2021).The Fixated Persons Investigations Unit was established in 2017 by Commissioner Mick Fuller to focus on the detection, intervention, and prevention of so-called ‘lone actor’ and ‘fixated person’ threats and grievance-fuelled violence across the state.Anyone with information in relation to fixated persons is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or online: https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au.Information you provide will be treated in the strictest of confidence. People should not report information via our Facebook and Twitter pages. /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:Australia, Commissioner, detection, Facebook, Government, investigation, Lismore, mobile, mobile phone, New South Wales, Nimbin, NSW, NSW Police, parliament, police, Twitter, Victoria, violence, warrantlast_img read more

June 16

Using solar to power hot water systems and support South Australia’s energy grid

first_imgUsing solar to power hot water systems and support South Australia’s energy grid A Government-backed project aimed at reducing energy use for hot water systems at peak times to help manage grid stability and lower costs, will help South Australians to keep the lights on for less.Solahart, a subsidiary of Rheem Australia, is conducting a trial on approximately 2,400 residential hot water systems in South Australia.Hot water systems are significant users of energy at peak times and under the trial hot water systems will draw on the abundant solar energy available outside of peak demand to heat water.As part of the project, a Virtual Power Plant (VPP) will be established to aggregate the electrical load of hot water heaters, curb electricity usage at peak times or provide network services to the grid. This will enable both customers with and without solar panels to participate.Hot water systems will utilise off-peak power, reducing reliance on the energy system at peak times. The trial will investigate how this can help to bring down costs, stabilise the grid at the evening peak and make use of excess solar energy during the day.Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said the project will help South Australia to manage the strong uptake of rooftop solar and ensure the benefits of renewable energy are utilised.“Australia is experiencing a solar installation boom which is driving the creation of record new renewable capacity,” Minister Taylor said.“This project will help South Australia to get the most out of this boom and maximise the use of renewables in the grid, reducing pressure on the electricity system.“Already, one in four Australian homes have solar – the highest uptake of household solar in the world. This is helping to reduce household energy bills and emissions.“As more Australians turn to solar to power their homes, it is important that we manage this.“Solar power can only be used when the sun is shining, which is why we need to find more ways to use it when it’s available to stop it going to waste.”The Morrison Government is investing $1.98 million in the $9.9 million project through the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, with the South Australian Government matching the Commonwealth’s funding.The project will create a number of additional jobs at Rheem Australia, with the trial also indirectly supporting local jobs in installation. /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:AusPol, Australia, Australian, Australian Government, Australian Renewable Energy Agency, commonwealth, electricity, Government, Minister, Morrison, Morrison Government, power plant, project, renewable, renewable energy, solar power, South Australialast_img read more

June 16

Upgrade for Menindee Lakes Caravan Park

first_imgUpgrade for Menindee Lakes Caravan Park More than $575,000 in repair and upgrade work will be undertaken to the Menindee Lakes Caravan Park to ensure it can continue to service both locals and visitors to the area.The work, which is due to start on Monday next week, will be undertaken by the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment – Crown Lands which manages the park.A $235,000 injection from the COVID-19 stimulus program is being supported by budget allocations from the department to see more than $575,000 in maintenance and improvement works that have been identified.Work will include:Repairs to buildings and upgrades to plumbing infrastructure and fire safety equipment as well as demolition of old buildings and safe removal of asbestos.A new water supply system will be installed throughout the park including new water pipes, taps and connections. A new septic system will also be installed.Electrical upgrades will include replacement of power outlet heads, upgrades to switchboards and other work.Menindee Lakes Caravan Park, which is located on a Crown land reserve on the eastern shores of Lake Menindee, was brought under the management of the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment – Crown Lands in August 2020.The caravan park was established in the early 1960s and is a popular weekend recreational area for residents of the Broken Hill region with its caravan, camping and cabin accommodation in a stunning outback location.The repair and upgrade work will give the park a boost by ensuring Far West residents can access improved facilities while supporting the park’s appeal as an accommodation destination for the Menindee Lakes region.The department has been liaising with caravan owners at the site about a required temporary closure of the park from 15 February 2021 to 16 April 2021 to allow the upgrade work to occur.Minister for Water, Property and Housing Melinda Pavey said the COVID-19 stimulus program was upgrading facilities while supporting local economies.“The COVID-19 stimulus program has been designed to support communities that have been navigating extremely challenging conditions,” Minister Pavey said.“Projects like this are being funded to create work for regional businesses and tradies and they bring in customers and tourists to boost the local economy in regional areas.” /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:asbestos, Broken Hill, camping, caravan, covid-19, Economy, environment, Government, housing, industry, infrastructure, Menindee, Minister, NSW Department of Industry, outback, planning, property, Safetylast_img read more

June 14

CU Living: Join your hall council

first_img Published: Sept. 28, 2016 Are you thinking about getting a little more involved in your on-campus community but aren’t sure where to start? How about joining your hall council?Hall council is part of the Residence Hall Association (RHA) and is open to any resident living in the halls. It can be a great opportunity to gain leadership experience, collaborate on projects with your peers, effect change in your community and most importantly, have fun!Being a council member allows you to do things like plan and participate in programs (like the annual favorite, Haunted Halls in Williams Village), review and create legislation to improve residence hall living and to meet and interact with people across campus.You can find out additional information by visiting the RHA website or by talking to your hall director. Meetings are every Monday at 5 p.m. in the Kittredge Multipurpose Room. Categories:Getting InvolvedCampus Community Share Share via TwitterShare via FacebookShare via LinkedInShare via E-maillast_img read more

June 14

A house run on the sun: How a team of CU students SPARC-ed advances for modern mountain housing

first_imgThe CU Boulder “SPARC” house (Sustainability, Performance, Attainability, Resilience and Community), aims to address the housing attainability crisis and construction challenges faced by mountain towns across the country. It will be judged in 10 contests, from architecture and energy efficiency to the health and comfort of a building’s residents. It’s the result of three years of work—through everything from extreme heat and wildfires to construction complications due to COVID-19—and the final product is a stunning achievement. A compact two stories and 1,176 square feet, the dark brown house commands sweeping views of the surrounding mountains in Fraser, a quaint town with a year-round population of 1,500, just a few miles north of the Winter Park Ski Area. A 7.6-kilowatt array of solar panels covers the roof’s south side and powers the house, set to catch the more than 300 days of sunshine it gets every year. It’s equipped with three highly-energy efficient cold-climate heat pumps that can handle Fraser’s low temperatures, which have lent the town the unofficial title of the “Icebox of the Nation.”Inside, an induction cooking stove avoids the need for fossil fuel combustion inside the all-electric home. The heat pumps, water heating, electric vehicle charging systems, lighting and some plug loads can all be remote controlled and/or timed to minimize electricity use during periods when the electric grid is most stressed, or to maximize the use of solar power. It’s so well insulated with multiple layers of wool and quad-lite windows that from the inside, it’s almost impossible to hear the regular train traffic that rumbles past town. And the house is so energy efficient, it’s already selling energy back to the local power grid—all while temperatures still drop below freezing at night and the owners use it to charge their electric car.“To be fully sustainable, for the economies of places to thrive, their community needs to be strong. So we asked: How do we address that with a house?” said Gabriella Abello, one of the team’s founding project leads who graduated from CU Boulder in May 2020. It’s been a monumental effort, with more than 30 students and faculty collaborating across campus since 2017 to create a house completely from scratch for competition this week. From sophomores to PhDs, students involved have been based in architectural engineering, Engineering Plus, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, business, environmental design and even anthropology. The project has spanned many team members’ graduations, with recent alumni involved now spread across the country, applying their hands-on experience directly to their careers. A decade in the making “We set out to solve a local problem, and a problem that was close to us physically and close to our hearts,” said Blake. “A lot of us at CU have very close connections to mountain towns, whether it’s because our families are from there or we go there so often, we care about the places that we spend time in.”In addition to its state-of-the-art-energy efficiency systems, which significantly reduce utility costs, the most unique feature of the house meant to address affordability is its rental unit. This small, 300 square foot rental unit is directly attached to the house and shares certain utilities like the washer and dryer in the main unit, but it can also function as a separate studio space, complete with an efficiency kitchen and bathroom. Because of this flexibility, the rental unit can be used as an affordable option for seasonal workers while providing extra income to the local homeowner. The COVID-19 pandemic has also demonstrated that this fully separate space is useful in other situations, such as if a family member gets sick and needs to isolate, or when a medically vulnerable relative comes to visit, said Abello. While rental units have often been touted in urban settings as part of “high density housing,” the SPARC house proves its useful application to mountain living. Its modest footprint, however, is the most significant departure from the high number of large vacation and second homes being built in the same area. Including the land it sits on, its foundation, furnishings and deck, to purchase the SPARC home, Taddonio and Smyth spent approximately $400,000—tens to hundreds of thousands less than what other residents in the surrounding mountains could expect to pay for a new build. “If this house were to be put on the market today, it would be one of the most affordable options in the region,” said Taddonio. A last minute pivot While CU Boulder clinched first place in both the inaugural 2002 event and again in 2005, a team of Buffs hasn’t competed since 2007. But 10 years later, a SPARC was lit. In the summer of 2017, students Abello and Hannah Blake took a trip into Denver to see a real-life display of some of the most innovative new homes ever created—all designed and built by college students. They marveled at the incredible lineup of full-size homes which seemed so far into the future in terms of energy efficiency, design and sustainability, yet which were all made with technology available at the time. “And it was students, people like us, that had built them and designed them, which was just so amazing to me,” remembers Abello, who was then a sophomore. We could do this, she thought. She emailed faculty to see who would want to help lead the way to the next scheduled competition in 2020. “It wasn’t really a question,” said Abello. “I was like: This is going to happen.”Since that day in 2017, Abello and Blake, who both graduated in May 2020 from the Engineering Plus program with an emphasis in architectural engineering, have served as project leads. “A huge part of why I joined definitely had to do with the fact that no course could offer this kind of hands-on learning,” said Blake. While Abello said she would welcome winning the title back for CU “with open arms,” she notes that the biggest success has been what they have learned and accomplished along the way.  “It has become so much more than just the competition,” said Abello.Solving a local problem Before the pandemic even began, in the summer of 2019, the team had a problem: Their original, one-story design wasn’t going to fit on the site. They had less than a year until they were supposed to deliver a finished house to Washington, D.C. to display on the National Mall. Luckily, Blake had recent experience from an internship in modular design, which led the team to pivot to a “panelized,” two-story design. The team partnered with Simple Homes, based in Denver, to learn how to build the panels in their warehouse. Simple Homes then transported them to Fraser and worked with the team and homeowners to place them all together within two days. This prefabricated design allowed for the house to be built and assembled from 15 large wall panels, a process which can help with labor shortages and a short building season in the mountains, while allowing for freedom in its architectural design, according to Justin Rimbach, a master’s student in structural engineering.When the pandemic hit, much of the student build moved to the mountains from the CU campus, causing challenges for the team in everything from carpooling safely to being able to work on the inside of the house together. “We had to redefine what our goals were and what our idea of success was,” said Charlotte Mitchell, a senior in architectural engineering on the project’s electrical team. This change in plans, however, allowed for a more hands-on hand-off to the homeowners, with the work anchored by a core team of CU students who lived in Fraser last fall, complemented by students who drove up regularly and then the homeowners taking the lead on much of the interior work in late 2020, according to Jennifer Scheib, faculty advisor to the project. “That was a defining moment to me in the project and a great example of the Fraser community’s, as well as our ability as a team, to think on our feet and get it done,” said Nate Hottenstein, marketing lead for the project and a student in Environmental Design. Wildfires briefly threatened the home last fall, as flames surged across the forests as close as 10 miles away. Grand County, where Fraser sits, lost over 500 structures, and with only a few dozen local construction companies suddenly busier than ever, the contractors involved doubled down in helping the CU team finish on time. While the homeowners are still moving in, they couldn’t be happier. “We signed up to run a 5k and accidentally enlisted in an ultramarathon. Now we have crossed the finish line, thanks to the CU team,” said Taddonio. “It’s just awesome to be able to wake up in the morning and look out and see mountains and to be here, it’s just a dream come true.” Current and previous team members (not exhaustive): Gabriella Abello (Team Co-Lead), Hannah Blake (Team Co-Lead), Nathanial Hottenstein (Marketing Sub-team Lead), Weston Moran (Financial Sub-team Lead), Natalie Betts (Electrical Sub-team Co-Lead), Charlotte Mitchell (Electrical Sub-team Co-Lead), Justin Rimbach (Structural Sub-team Co-Lead), Eric Sipocz (Structural Sub-team Co-Lead), Edward Herrick-Reynolds (Mechanical Sub-team Lead), Rachel Cornwell (Plumbing Sub-team Lead), Brandon Wallace (Systems Integration Sub-team Lead), Robin Walz (Site Foreman), Brenton Krieger (Graduate Student Advisor), Aisling Pigott (Graduate Student Advisor), Jennifer Scheib (Faculty Advisor), Michael Anthony, Jacob Apple, Angelique Fathy, Jasmine Garland, Bryce Letcher, Leonardo Nguyen, Claudia O’Herron, Chloe Ross, Noah Sadowski, Justin Schlosser, Emily Schwartz, Calen Shoen, Lizzy Sommer, Ryan Tasto, Pratik Tolani, Jock Tuttle, Niket Vasavada and Heather Walker. In addition to the homeowners, funders of this project include The U.S. Department of Energy, the CU Boulder Engineering Excellence Fund, and friends and family. Partners of the project include: Simple Homes (Denver), M3 Property Services (Fraser), Ascent Group, PCD Engineering, Emu, Northern Colorado Energy Solutions and Group14 Engineering. Sponsors of the project include: Mitsubishi Electric Trane HVAC US LLC, Active Energies Solar, LLC, Beko, WAC Lighting, RenewAire, Prosoco, Havelock Wool, 475 Performance Building Supply, Alpen and Whiting-Turner. Categories:Science & TechnologyNews Headlines Share Share via TwitterShare via FacebookShare via LinkedInShare via E-mail Top: From left, students Jacob Apple, Ryan Tasto and Heather Walker get input from faculty member Jennifer Scheib. Bottom: From right, students Ryan Tasto, Heather Walker and Jacob Apple conduct tests in the 2021 Solar Decathlon house entry for CU Boulder in Fraser, Colorado. (Credit: Casey A. Cass/CU Boulder)  Kristen Taddonio and Joe Smyth, residents of Fraser and now homeowners of the SPARC house, were also in Denver that day at the showcase. In fact, they ended up inside the same house as Abello and Blake, who were asking current students in the competition about how to get involved. These students were looking to sell their home—so they wouldn’t have to ship it back to their campus—and something clicked for Taddonio and Smyth. Having recently bought land in Fraser with the dream of building their own sustainable home someday, they gave their card to Abello and said “call us” if they entered the next competition and needed partners to invest. Less than two years later, Taddonio’s phone rang. Abello was serious on her promise to deliver, and Fraser was the perfect place. “It’s right in the high Rockies, at the headwaters of the Colorado River, with hundreds of miles of trails and there’s fantastic skiing. And it’s just this lovely, friendly, awesome little town. We love Fraser,” said Smyth. But like many smaller, mountain towns in the West, it’s facing soaring housing prices. Due to increasing demand, large housing footprints, limited numbers of local construction companies and other impacts from the late 2000s housing crisis, housing costs in the northern Rockies can be more than twice those elsewhere in Colorado, and up to 3.5 times the national average. These prices push out locals and can make it almost impossible for seasonal workers to afford rent.  Top: Gabriella Abello and Hannah Blake take a break while working on the SPARC house in 2020. (Credit: U.S. Department of Energy) Bottom: Team members of the CU Boulder Solar Decathlon team post in front of the Flatirons on campus in 2019. (Credit: University of Colorado Boulder Solar Decathlon) The CU Boulder 2021 Solar Decathlon SPARC house in Fraser, Colorado. (Credit: Casey A. Cass/CU Boulder) Top: The house’s 8 panels come together with assistance from Simple Homes. (Credit: U.S. Department of Energy) Bottom: The view from the CU Boulder 2021 Solar Decathlon SPARC house in Fraser, Colorado. (Credit: Casey A. Cass/CU Boulder) Published: April 12, 2021 • By Kelsey Simpkins Banner image: Students on the CU Boulder Solar Decathlon team work on their SPARC house. (Credit: U.S. Department of Energy) UPDATE: Buffs take first place in Build ChallengeThe University of Colorado Boulder won first place in the 2021 U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon Build Challenge, the third time CU Boulder has placed first in the highly competitive event. The results were announced Sunday, April 18, 2021 by Secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy, Jennifer Granholm. This win adds to CU Boulder’s first place finishes in the inaugural 2002 event and again in 2005. In addition to the overall first place win, the team won three of 10 contests within the build challenge, including innovation, market potential and architecture, tied for second in the Energy Performance contest, and placed second in the contests for engineering, operations, and financial feasibility and affordability. Read more. A modest new house in Fraser, Colorado—considered the coldest town in the lower-48—is no ordinary home. With it, a team of Buffs will compete this week in the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon for the first time since 2007. This collegiate competition prepares the next generation of building professionals to design and build highly efficient buildings powered by renewable energy. Since it was established in 2002, more than 465 teams and 20,000 students have participated in this international event. From April 15 through 18, 2021, CU Boulder will compete in the Build Challenge against nine other teams from the U.S., as well as from The Netherlands, Chile and Canada. Originally planned to take place in-person on the National Mall last June, the event will be held virtually this year using real-estate tour-like technology. last_img read more

June 11

Allen bill tries to streamline affordable housing construction

first_img It’s a very difficult problem to solve. Officiant Guy says: 1 Comment HomeFeaturedAllen bill tries to streamline affordable housing construction Dec. 17, 2018 at 5:00 amFeaturedNewsAllen bill tries to streamline affordable housing constructionMadeleine Pauker2 years agoaffordable housinghousingNewsSanta MonicaBen Allen. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia. The California state senator representing Santa Monica is looking to put a referendum on the ballot in 2020 that will make it easier for cities to build affordable housing.Sen. Ben Allen is proposing repealing an amendment to the California state constitution voters approved in 1950 that requires cities to hold a citywide vote before funding any affordable housing project. Many cities work around Article 34 by asking residents to approve certain numbers of affordable units, creating a pool of approved units developers can then pull from to build new projects.That process adds between $10,000 and $80,000 to the cost of building low-income housing, according to the California Department of Housing and Community Development. Allen said it’s not only expensive, but antiquated.“It’s part of an old-school mentality we’ve moved past,” he said. “To single out a particular type of development based on the income status of the residents is pretty classist and not in accordance with California values.”Voters may have voted against repealing Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act, which would have paved the way to expand rent control across the state, but Allen said he’s optimistic that Californians will support the measure.“Over the past few years, California voters have made their priorities really clear and supported ballot measures dedicating money to the housing and homelessness crisis,” he said. “They want more affordable housing built sooner rather than later and there’s something in the state constitution standing in the way.”The real estate industry donated millions to the campaign against Prop. 10, which would have repealed Costa-Hawkins. Allen said he thinks the industry was able to convince voters that the proposition would have exacerbated the housing crisis and it would be difficult to use that argument against his proposal.Allen said his proposal is respectful of local control over housing, which he thinks voters will appreciate. Other pro-housing proposals state legislators are working on, such as Sen. Scott Wiener’s plan to require cities to approve apartments in transit- and job-rich areas, take a certain degree of zoning power away from city governments, Allen said.If his proposal became law, elected representatives would still decide whether or not to support affordable housing projects.“On the one hand, it’s clearly a pro-housing measure,” Allen said. “The difference is that it … doesn’t take away any powers from local elected representatives to make decisions as they see fit.”Affordable housing advocates, including Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, have expressed support for the proposal, and urban planning experts agree that Article 34’s time is up.“Article 34 is a grossly exclusionary law and its repeal is long overdue,” said Michael Lens, a UCLA urban planning professor. “I do not see the least bit of downside with getting rid of it.”Allen’s bill requires the approval of two-thirds of both houses of the Legislature for it to be placed on the March or November 2020 [email protected] :affordable housinghousingNewsSanta Monicashare on Facebookshare on Twittershow 1 comment December 17, 2018 at 12:33 PM Comments are closed. Council could require permits for large adult groups using Santa Monica beachesOutgoing Mayor sees fiscal challenges on the horizonYou Might Also LikeFeaturedNewsBobadilla rejects Santa Monica City Manager positionMatthew Hall9 hours agoNewsCouncil picks new City ManagerBrennon Dixson19 hours agoFeaturedNewsProtesting parents and Snapchat remain in disagreement over child protection policiesClara Harter19 hours agoFeaturedNewsDowntown grocery to become mixed use developmenteditor19 hours agoNewsBruised but unbowed, meme stock investors are back for moreAssociated Press19 hours agoNewsWedding boom is on in the US as vendors scramble to keep upAssociated Press19 hours agolast_img read more