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Repurposing a Waterfront Icon

Photo: City of Burlington

Anyone who's followed the Burlington Bike Path north through Waterfront Park and the past new Sailing Center has seen the defunct Moran power plant, standing tall above the Andy A_Dog Williams Skatepark. In a continued effort to improve community spaces along the waterfront, Burlington city councilors voted Monday to advance plans to 'rescue' the plant by undergoing a partial demolition, maintaining the steel frame of the structure, and converting the building into some sort of public space. Proposals have included lookouts and viewing decks with park space on the ground level. From an economic standpoint, partial demolition could prove less costly to tearing the entire building down. Funding for the project could come from "anticipated upticks to waterfront district tax revenues, as well as a $2 million federal loan."  Read the full article and see more photos from the Burlington Free Press HERE!

 

Alec Murphy

Lipkin Team

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    Introducing the Lipkin Audette Team!

    We are delighted to announce that The Carol Audette Team and Steve Lipkin Team are merging effective January 1, 2019 to create the Lipkin Audette Team!

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      Funding of UVM Multi-Purpose Athletic Complex

      Photo: UVM Athletics

      The UVM Board of Trustees approved a unanimous resolution in October regarding how the proposed Multipurpose athletic facility will be funded. The payment strategies mentioned by the proposal include gifts, bonds, credit, and student fees. UVM is reported as having secured $21.8M from donors so far with a goal of $30M by Feb 1.

      The project itself includes construction of a new basketball arena, expanded fitness center, expanded health and wellness spaces, renovations to Gutterson arena, and complex-wide renovations. Read the full article in the Vermont Cynic HERE!

      -Alec, LipVT

      North Hero Neighbors Clash Over Private Airstrip

      We all know the line, “good fences make good neighbors,” but what if your neighbors are flying over the fence as they take-off and land their aircraft on a private runway… on their side of the fence? In North Hero, neighbors are clashing over the construction and permitting of a half-built grass runway to be used by small, recreational aircraft. The pilots and their attorney have been working with local and state officials to form a proposal that lays out how many flights a day the pilots can operate from the airstrip, how much fuel should be kept on site, a provision to allow emergency use of the runway in the event of a crisis, and other conditions that are aimed to ensure the pilots remain considerate of their neighbors when using the site.

      However, as with many of the homes situated on Lake Champlain, residents (seasonal and year-round alike) invest in the area for its natural beauty and serenity. Homeowners are understandably concerned with how the added noise and presence of the airstrip will affect their own property value – an issue Chittenden County residents are familiar with given the context of the heated battle over the incoming F-35 jets at Burlington International Airport in South Burlington.

      The current status is that the runway owners have until February 7 to complete their application with the Vermont Transportation Board. North Hero Select Board Chair Eileen Mitchell is quoted to have written that the town “has no zoning bylaws or ordinances prohibiting” the landing area.        Read the full article in Seven Days HERE!

       

      -Alec Murphy, LipVT

       

      Hardware Store Coming Soon Across from City Hall Park

       

      Photo from www.sevendaysvt.com

      Gordon Winters, owner of five other existing Ace Hardware stores in Vermont and New York, is in the process of opening another Ace Hardware on College Street in Burlington. The location, directly across from City Hall Park, abuts a Northfield Savings Bank branch. Winters and others say the store is filling a void left by the closing of Hagar Hardware on Church Street in the 90’s. The store would stock typical hardware store products in addition to specialty items targeting “college students, specialty plumbing for the city’s older buildings, and a marine section for boaters.” A hardware store is a step towards having more downtown retailers that serve residents’ daily needs in addition to the many restaurants and boutique stores. In this Seven Days article, the author cites Bibens Ace in the New North End as the next closest hardware store at 3 miles away from downtown. In the comments section, folks have mentioned that Curtis Lumber, while closer, is a building supply store, catering especially towards contractors in their stock and hours. Read the full article from Seven Days HERE!

      Greater Burlington YMCA: Bigger, Better, Breaking Ground on College Street

       

      Photo courtesy of Greater Burlington YMCA

      With a proposed completion date of early 2020, construction has begun on the new building for the Greater Burlington YMCA. If you’re headed up College Street, check out the newest big hole in the ground between South Union St. and Hungerford Terrace. S.D. Ireland has been hard at work on the foundation of this $15M project. The building will house two pools, a gym, running/walking track, fitness studios, workout space, and expanded drop-in child care space. The footprint of the building will eclipse that of the old Ethan Allen Club which has been demolished to make space for the new Y. The Y states that membership rates will go up, but expected increases in membership numbers will help keep these price increases moderate. 

      Photo courtesy of Greater Burlington YMCA

       

      Read the full article from the Burlington Free Press HERE!

       

      Burlington's Mail-Order Homes, Hidden in Plain Sight

       

      Would you like to buy a house, 4 Bedroom, 1 bath, anywhere you’d like for $2,495? Well then hop in a time machine to the 1920s when Sears & Roebuck offered to sell you an entire house and ship it to you in a sealed train car to assemble on your own with limited tools, time and expertise. Maybe houses will be the next offering from Amazon, after recently adding fresh(ish) cut Christmas trees to their distribution centers. Maybe you’re living in a catalog home and you don’t even know it?

             

      146 N. Prospect Street  - Google Maps                                                                                       1925 Sears Modern Homes Catalog -  searshousesinohio.wordpress.com

       

      An example of  a Sears Fullerton model - 146 N Prospect Street. 

       

      Mail order homes represent an American spirit of fierce independence and confident optimism to have enough foolishness to believe that you could assemble a home that could stand for a century as if it were a LEGO set. Many have admired the idea of these homes for a long time and have often wondered if some of their neighbors lived in such houses. Thankfully, Burlington has published, “A Guide to the Catalog Houses of Burlington, Vermont.” Written in 2009 by a UVM graduate student as part of the Community Preservation Project, the Guide documents various homes in Burlington and their corresponding model types.

       

      For the adventurous, I’ve added a pin for each of the 30 houses identified in the Guide to a Google Map, creating a virtual scavenger hunt around Burlington! Enjoy!

       

      Alec Murphy, Lipkin Team

       

      Works Cited

      Hummer, Lauren. “A Guide to the Catalog Houses of Burlington, Vermont.” City of Burlington, Vermont, 2009, www.burlingtonvt.gov/sites/default/files/pz/historic/informational/Guide%20to%20Catalog%20Homes%20in%20Burlington.pdf.

      Rosenberg, Joe. “The House That Came in the Mail.” 99% Invisible, 99percentinvisible.org/episode/the-house-that-came-in-the-mail/.

      “Six Sears Houses.” New England Historical Society, 30 June 2018, www.newenglandhistoricalsociety.com/six-sears-houses/.

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        194 Saint Paul - New Champlain College Dorm, and Its Effect on Burlington's Rental Market

        194 St. Paul Street - MATTHEW THORSEN

         

        This August, three hundred fourteen Champlain College students will move into the newly constructed 194 Saint Paul Street building. This ambitious Champlain College project has been years in the making as part of the College’s goal to house even more of its undergraduates. The new building is about half a mile from the center of Champlain College’s campus, and also only a few blocks from Church Street and the waterfront. It’s unclear exactly how the changing marketplace will affect the composition of renters in what are currently popular student zones in Burlington. Nevertheless, according to real estate agent and landlord Steve Lipkin, “the market is at tight as [he’s] ever seen it for residential single-family homes in Burlington.”  Read the full story from Seven Days VT HERE!

         

        *Photo: Matthew Thorsen, Seven Days VT

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          Progress of South Burlington's Newest Development- Hillside at O'Brien Farm

          We are thrilled to announce we will be working with O'Brien Brothers Agency, Inc. on their new development- Hillside at O’Brien Farm. Located in the most convenient and newest neighborhood in South Burlington, Vermont. Hillside offers 118 custom-built homes and Townhomes with a range of prices and options for every stage of life. Choose your lot location, the style of your home, interior features, and let them do the rest! Please let us know if you or someone you know would like a packet of information with prices and home choices!

          Check out the video from our very own Jacob Smith giving the update on the progress of the development. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3B2nBCGDxDU

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            South Burlington Development Boom Brings New Units, Challenges

            The landscape of South Burlington, Vermont, has changed over several decades from bucolic pastures to row upon row of single family homes. Now, new development trends are reshaping the city once again. Seven Days reports that recent zoning changes and new multi-family development projects are slowly concentrating construction into pockets of denser, downtown-style living.

            One of the projects underway is O'Brien Farm, a development by the O'Brien Brothers Agency that will feature hundreds of new units off of Kennedy Drive and will be built out in different phases over five years. Many of the city's proposed units will likewise be built in phases, allowing the rental market to absorb increases in housing stock over time. This hopes to prevent dramatic fluctuations in the vacancy rate that could come if thousands of newly constructed units became available all at once.

            Although the many housing units in the works are expected to relieve pressure from the area's tight rental market, most of the new buildings will primarily feature luxury apartments rather than low-income or affordable housing. Seven Days details the complicated consequences of these new construction projects and their impact on residents of Chittenden County across different income levels.Click to read the full story online.

            *photo courtesy O'Brien Brothers Agency

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