SEDCOR's Enterprise Magazine

What used to be the Salem Economic Development Corporation is now the Strategic Economic Development Corporation, or SEDCOR. This creative organization provides a wonderful bi-monthly magazine, Enterprise, which documents what is happening in the mid-Willamette Valley business world. The current issue is dedicated to covering the move of local business and industry to sustainable practices. Click here to see page 16, on Pringle Creek--written by our masterplan coordinator, Tony Nielsen. Below are a couple paragraphs that name some of the other businesses involved.

Pringle Creek Community, and the other local businesses that are working on the project, are connecting Salem to Oregon’s green reputation. North Santiam Paving Company is using biodiesel and porous asphalt and concrete. DeSantis Landscapes is using all-organic methods on the property. O’Neil Pine Company and Withers Lumber Company are providing the sustainably harvested lumber (FSC-certified)—only FSC lumber will be used at the development. Prudential Real Estate has a core sales team that are among Oregon’s first certified Eco-brokers.

Other local businesses and individuals involved with the project include Kris Gorsuch of Saalfeld Griggs, Rick Yurk of BAM Agency, Scott Erickson of Evolution Paving Resources, Elaine Gesik of 1st Premier Properties, and Ron Summers of Summer Solar Systems. Four mid-valley builders--Bilyeu Homes, Spectra Construction, The Glen Rea Company, and Shipman Quality Construction--are building seven different housing types that will help attract new buyers and businesses to Salem.

You can see the entire issue of the magazine. It’s 48 pages, so it’s a large pdf file. Page 27 has a small item about a SEDCOR visit to Pringle Creek and includes a photo of Don Myers presenting information about the project to the gathering.


Green Building 101

This is connected to the Green + Solar Tour of Homes written up below. In fact, if you attend this lecture, at a cost of $5, you can get $5 off the price of the Green + Solar Home Tour. Here are the details:


Salem, Ore.---Green Building expert Andrew Shepard will provide an introduction to environmentally benign and energy-efficient building design on October 2 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Straub Environmental Center, 1320 A Street NE, next to Olinger Pool, near North Salem High School.

Shepard, a consultant with the Earth Advantage program, will talk about the economic and health benefits of green building, the costs of green building, and the future of green building.

The program is part of the Amateur Naturalist Series. The class costs $5 and is open to the public. The program and series is sponsored by the Friends of Straub Environmental Learning Center.

Registration is required. To register, call 503-391-4145.

The Friends of the Straub Environmental Learning Center is a Salem-based, non-profit organization dedicated to environmental education.

CONTACT INFORMATION: John Savage, 503-399-8615


Solar prestige

This should be a great event.
It is a tour of homes in the area that are leaders in green building. Pringle Creek's cottage home is one of them. And the tour begins and ends at Pringle Creek.

Salem Green + Solar Home Tour
Date: Saturday, October 6 2007
Time: 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
Location: Start at Pringle Creek Community, 2110 Strong Road SE
Contact: Pringle Creek Community (503) 763-1770 or www.pringlecreek.com

Ten new and newly-remodeled homes in Salem and Silverton will open their doors to demonstrate a wide variety of green design, materials and technologies. Homes will feature solar and wind energy, natural building products, rainwater harvesting, natural landscaping and sustainable design. Join us for a self-guided tour and for the opportunity to meet homeowners, builders, contractors and architects.

The tour will be followed by a reception at Pringle Creek Community at 4 p.m. Early registration is $10 per car, or $15 per car after September 29th. Carpooling encouraged. Bicyclists are free. For more info, contact Pringle Creek Community (503) 763-1770.

Tour stop: 1440 Nebraska Ave.
Tour stop: Salmon Run on High St. just south of downtown


Children's park

In addition to the Fir Grove Park, the community greenhouses and gardens, the Village Green, and the creek trail, we have a new "destination" to check out when you visit Pringle Creek Community. The Children's Park is going up near the community orchard. This pocket park will include a low fenced area with a unique play structure for young children.

When the Children's Park is done, it will be a wonderful place to sit and relax watching children at play. It will include picnic tables and a landscaped trellis.


The Greatest Generation was also the greenest

When I have thought about the society-wide changes that may be needed to prevent climate change or cope with energy shortages—growing our own food, consuming less, bicycling—I have tended to think of aspects of the‘60s counterculture. From now on I will think of the actual transformation that took place back when my parents were teens, during WWII.

Too many of us, in other words, talk green but lead supersized lifestyles--giving fodder to the conservative cynics who write columns about Al Gore's electricity bills. Our culture appears hopelessly addicted to fossil fuels, shopping sprees, suburban sprawl, and beef-centered diets. Would Americans ever voluntarily give up their SUVs, McMansions, McDonald's, and lawns?

The surprisingly hopeful answer lies in living memory. In the 1940s, Americans simultaneously battled fascism overseas and waste at home. My parents, their neighbors, and millions of others left cars at home to ride bikes to work, tore up their front yards to plant cabbage, recycled toothpaste tubes and cooking grease, volunteered at daycare centers and USOs, shared their houses and dinners with strangers, and conscientiously attempted to reduce unnecessary consumption and waste. The World War II home front was the most important and broadly participatory green experiment in U.S. history.

The above is from Home-Front Ecology: What our grandparents can teach us about saving the world, an article by Mike Davis in Sierra magazine. Davis is most famous for his book City of Quartz (a “fiercely elegant and wide-ranging work of social history [in which] Los Angeles is both utopia and dystopia, a place where the last Joshua trees are being plowed under to make room for model communities in the desert . . .").

So, yes, a transformation can be done--it has been done. That is encouraging. On the other hand, it was done as part of total war. The foes were militaristic fascists bent on world domination. Powerful incentive. And there was an end in sight, which isn't the case with the problems we face today. We should also recall that after the war ended, the troops and the folks at home went on a consumption spree. That never stopped.


Greenhouses coming along

Just a few photos of the progress on the old Lord & Burnham glasshouses we are restoring. They are looking great, thanks to volunteers and all of Paco’s efforts. We are doing a final measurement of glass next week, and continuing with painting and restoration.

Also, here is a photo, from earlier in the summer, of volunteers sheet mulching the blueberry area.

The advantage to sheet mulching is that it enriches the soil, holds moisture and suppresses weeds. Cut weeds and grasses back as low as you can, then lay down cardboard and cover it with whatever organic material you have. Multiple layers of materials is best. In our case, we used bark dust that was ground up onsite from the limbs of hazard trees and winter blow-downs from last year.



Clif Bar visits Pringle Creek

Hannah, who works for Clif Bar, has been on the road for three months, touring the west coast in a biodiesel van. Packed inside that van she had what you might expect--Clif Bar products and luggage--but other things too, like a surfboard hanging from the ceiling and a mountain bike.

Hannah has been running on B99 since Southern CA. When stopping in Salem, she found Flower Power Biodiesel Co-op on this NearBio website, where you can type in your route or address and find biodiesel and E85 stations along the way.

We filled up the van with B99, took a walking tour of Pringle Creek (she was impressed) and talked about the various initiatives of Clif Bar to support sustainable farming, reduce the company's carbon footprint, and build relationships with other groups. She met our team and sat down on the porch to eat her lunch, then gave us a few boxes of Clif Bars (they disappeared the first day) and off she went. Thanks Hannah, and good luck with the rest of your trip!