Construction Continues at Pringle Creek Community

The new three-story custom home of Ms. Kristen Duss is set adjacent to green space and enjoys a view of the Village Green. It is the second home design based on the "Tall House" concept, with a garage tucked, and primary living spaces on the second and third levels. For information about the tall house built for the Wilsons check out the Portland Spaces article and this drawing from our website.

Kristen's tall house is framed up.

The view out the side window down Cousteau Loop.

The view from the top floor.


Moving, slowly, away from cars

A thoughtful New York Times article, Is Happiness Still That New Car Smell?, looks into changing attitudes about cars. Many people are deciding they can live without one, whether because of environmental or financial concerns. The article misses a pertinent point: If you use your car a lot, perhaps a couple trips a day, each trip is not terribly expensive. But if you use your car only twice a week, each trip becomes very expensive. This is because the cost of insurance is the same in both cases, and because of depreciation. The value of your car goes down each year even if you don't use it very much. So a logical answer for many people is car-sharing, which is available in Portland with Zipcar or with U Car Share. A brief web search failed to locate any car sharing in Salem.

Here are some sections of the article:

Whether because of cost, convenience or environmental awareness, a small but growing number of people are making individual decisions to get rid of their automobiles and rely on public transportation, car-sharing programs and rental cars.

“There’s a cultural change taking place,” said John Casesa, a veteran auto industry analyst and partner in the Casesa Shapiro Group. “It’s partly because of the severe economic contraction. But younger consumers are viewing an automobile with a jaundiced eye. They don’t view the car the way their parents did, and they don’t have the money that their parents did.”

. . .

“People are questioning car purchases more than we’ve ever seen in recent history,” said Jesse Toprak, vice president of industry trends and insights for TrueCar, a company that tracks car-buying habits.

Young, cash-strapped consumers are delaying their first purchases longer, he said, robbing automakers of the chance to attract them early and keep their business as they move up in life.
Across the country, empty nesters are moving back into cities and shedding their cars. Toyota has identified 60 locales where it has seen this occur, according to James E. Lentz, the president of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., and it has begun thinking about whether it needs to open satellite offices to serve customers who’ve moved away from suburban dealerships.

Are you ready to give up your car for a Honda U3-X? It is referenced in the above NYT article.


Photo log: Painter's Hall

The door pull on the front door is old steam pipe from the conservatory.

The trellis is also made of old steam pipe reclaimed from the conservatory.

The steps up to Painter's Hall are made from broken up slabs from deconstructed buildings
and from trees milled onsite.

This photo shows the trellis and one of the two Painter's Hall entryway double doors.

Painter's Hall going for LEED platinum:
we're almost there.

Below is a photo of the solar panels on the Painter's Hall. The photo and caption are from an article in the Sunday Oregonian about the new Sanyo solar panel manufacturing facility in Salem that just opened.

Sanyo solar panels are among the most efficient at capturing sunlight for electricity. The company utilizes a hybrid of two solar technologies to produce panels that can be used in extreme heat, cloudy weather and capture sunlight from both the top and the bottom . . .



Painter's Hall going for LEED platinum

The Statesman Journal had a fine article the other day (and then reprinted in a special "South Salem" section) about Pringle Creek's remodeled Painter's Hall: Salem site closes in on platinum designation.

Its walls are so thick, its ceiling so insulated and its heating so efficient that nary a wisp of energy will leave the building.

The so-called Painter's Hall is so "green" that it is on track to get the highest green-building rating by the U.S. Green Building Council: platinum.

It will be the first platinum commercial building in Salem, one of 11 in Oregon and one of 52 along the West Coast.

Click here to see a Statesman Journal photo gallery of green buildings in the Salem area. Pringle Creek Community is featured in photo #14 (Wilsons' house), #22 through #28 (Painter's Hall), and #39 and #40 (the new houses).