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Archive for Saturday, May 12, 2007

Officials hope to build ‘green’ Greensburg

May 12, 2007

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FEMA Director R. David Paulison, left, talks with Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius during a tour of tornado damage Wednesday in Greensburg. Sebelius and other leaders are discussing how to rebuild Greensburg after last week's destruction.

FEMA Director R. David Paulison, left, talks with Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius during a tour of tornado damage Wednesday in Greensburg. Sebelius and other leaders are discussing how to rebuild Greensburg after last week's destruction.

Greensburg looking to go 'green' in rebuilding efforts

It's been one week since a massive tornado tore through the town of Greensburg, Kansas, and now efforts are focusing on rebuilding the town to make it a much more environmentally friendly, greener Greensburg. Enlarge video

— When concrete plans take shape to rebuild Greensburg from the tornado that destroyed it, some are hoping the town will emerge as a "green" model of energy efficiency and rural spirit.

"It's really a golden opportunity. Rarely do you have a situation where you can start with a clean slate," Chris Kliewer, president of the Wichita chapter of the American Institute of Architects, said Friday.

Kliewer sent Gov. Kathleen Sebelius a letter saying AIA would support efforts to rebuild the southwest Kansas town by sharing the latest trends in technology and architecture.

"I am excited about the possibilities for creating hope in Greensburg and making this small town known for much more than this tragic event," Kliewer said.

Lt. Gov. Mark Parkinson also said rebuilding Greensburg can display the can-do attitude of rural America.

"As the country watches Greensburg rebuild and its city leaders express an interest in creating a greener Greensburg, we have a chance to demonstrate that rural Kansas is, and will always be, an important part of our future," he said.

Eight days ago, a massive tornado leveled the town of 1,400 people, killing nine people and destroying more than 90 percent of the town's buildings. Greensburg is about 270 miles from Lawrence, in south-central Kansas.

Sebelius said she has talked with local officials about the possibility of rebuilding the town with energy-efficient buildings and using sustainable energy sources, such as wind.

"We have the opportunity of having the greenest town in rural America," Sebelius said.

House Democratic Leader Dennis McKinney, whose home was destroyed by the storm, said it's something that has gained some traction locally.

"We have an opportunity to build a community, highly efficient energy-wise, and wired with the latest broadband," said McKinney, D-Greensburg.

He said despite the devastation, residents are optimistic about the future.

He said someone told him "whoever thought that at our age we would get to rebuild a community," he said.

Joseph King, a Lawrence architect, said the move toward a green town will have to be driven by local leaders in Greensburg.

"I would love to see them pursue it, but it won't be easy," King said.

Greensburg residents only recently started to bury their dead and sift through the rubble of their homes.

Tons of debris remain to be cleared and utility services are starting to be restored.

"The community is still grieving and trying to recover, but you know the planning stages will start quickly," Kliewer said.

Comments

Pogo 6 years, 11 months ago

The hand wringing and tears are on another page.....I think it's going on in the back of the bus too. I believe holding hands and singing Kumbaya is going on just before you get to the "tears and prayers are the solution" group.

I do agree with Bozo....we're all on this bus. My personal spot is the front seat on the left aisle on the 2nd level of this double decker bus. It's a panaromic view from this spot; there are no obstructions and, to quote Johnny Nash, " I Can See Clearly......".

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Christine Pennewell Davis 6 years, 11 months ago

Is it right to use a disaster as a political/eco marketring tool?

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ASBESTOS 6 years, 11 months ago

more from the asbestos site http://www.epa.gov/asbestos/pubs/asbbans2.pdf

"Products not banned - Asbestos-containing product categories no longer subject to the 1989 TSCA ban include: asbestos-cement corrugated sheet, asbestos-cement flat sheet, asbestos clothing, pipeline wrap, roofing felt, vinyl-asbestos floor tile, asbestos-cement shingle, millboard, asbestos-cement pipe, automatic transmission components, clutch facings, friction materials, disc brake pads, drum brake linings, brake blocks, gaskets, non-roofing coatings, and roof coatings."

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ASBESTOS 6 years, 11 months ago

The "plausible denialibility" typical form architects:

"However, when an owner doesn't care to pay for contract administration and special inspections and will accept low unqualified bids, they will get whatever they get and it is no one's fault but their own."

That is sad from somone that is supposedly a "Professional"!

It also shows the effect of the lack of KDHE to enforce their asbestos regualations!

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ASBESTOS 6 years, 11 months ago

"(Asbestos:.Funny, though I've been involved in a number of abatement projects, I have not seen any evidence of continued use of asbestos, seems like this would have come up sometime in the last 20 years I've been practicing this architect craft, but I haven't heard a bit about it Given the legal ramifications, I don't think this would just slip by. However, when an owner doesn't care to pay for contract administration and special inspections and will accept low unqualified bids, they will get whatever they get and it is no one's fault but their own)"

That's because you are sticking your head in the sand.EPA is all over it as well as OSHA. Everything is suspect, until it is proven negative for asbestos. We have even found that the MSDS supplied are incorrect. We are also haveing a building shortage, and most of the imported stuff does contain Asbestos. Your statement that "Given the legal ramifications, I don't think this would just slip by." shows that you are truley sticking your head in the sand. You ignore the asbestos regs obviously. It is common and known, and don't get me satarted with the asbestos contaminated vermiculite added to many materials.

You are the prime example of what I am talking about, ignoring the asbestos regulations and worker safety requirements because of your own unsupported opinion, but raving about the new "sustainable" building effort.

Well here is your wake up call bud:

such as this: Asbestos contamination in vermiculite and vermiculite products has become a national concern to a variety of federal agencies (EPA, OSHA, CPSC and ATSDR) and to many private citizens throughout the country. A tremendous amount of information has been made available to the public via print, television/radio and the Internet. EPA's vermiculite pages provides users with basic information about Vermiculite and its uses, factsheets, Question and Answer documents, reports and links to EPA Regional vermiculite pages. Other relevant information, not included here, may be available from federal, state and local governments, industry, trade associations and international sources.

from:

http://www.epa.gov/asbestos/pubs/verm.html

and this about the lack of a ban:

On July 12, 1989, EPA issued a final rule banning most asbestos-containing products. In 1991, this regulation was overturned by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans. As a result of the Court's decision, the following specific asbestos-containing products remain banned: flooring felt, rollboard, and corrugated, commercial, or specialty paper.

from the site:

http://www.epa.gov/asbestos/pubs/ban.html

Your response is the usual from an architect.

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Pogo 6 years, 11 months ago

Greensburg, Kansas is a backwards, regressive, full of sheep to slaughter types who are led by "rams" who not only were once (and probably still are) Posse Comitatus (http://www.nizkor.org/hweb/orgs/american/adl/paranoia-as-patriotism/posse-comitatus.html) "activists". "Green" Greensburg is absurd if not full out stupid.

It was a dying community of about 1800 people before the storm and perhaps what Travis Bickle noted in Taxi Driver is applicable to this God forsaken bible thumping hell hole.

We have personal experience with them that are in that hillbilly haven and, while they will take what they are given, it's not a bastion of progressive or even small town thinking processes. The place is chalk full of Jim Jones Jonestown types and while what happened to the people of the place is horrible, the mindset that existed there and in Kiowa county most probably hasn't died or even been modified by the Godly storm sent to clear the gutters. When one lives by the sword, one dies by the sword....as it is written, so it shall be. Sorta Fred Phelps kinda stuff......my goodness......

It is fully disgusting that the President of the USA goes to Greensburg, Kansas when he hasn't even started to really repair New Orleans, La. Is the reason, perhaps, that Greensburg, Kansas is lilly white country and our President is afraid of people of color? Is it because our President so badly needs to deflect attention being paid on his bonehead "policy" on Iraq or what? Incredible.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 11 months ago

"Bozo has this pattern of seeing the world the way she wishes it were, rather than accepting reality.

Sorry, Bozo, wrong again."

Am I really? Since when do insurance companies only pay off contingent upon approval of rebuilding plans.

Godot really is outdoing herself in her displays of ignorance this evening.

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Godot 6 years, 11 months ago

Look out, folks in Greensburg! overthemoon is already on board to tell you how to rebuild your lives at your own expense, and to assign to you the characteristic of "not caring" when you do not follow her directions.

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Godot 6 years, 11 months ago

overthemoon wrote: "There is a process (certification) by which the adherence to the specified design is insured."

No, it is not "insured." It is "ensured."

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overthemoon 6 years, 11 months ago

It is thrilling that there is such an immediate response to the possibility of a visionary response to the disaster at Greenburg. Sebalius was spot on in referring to this as an opportunity to meld many of the issues facing our state into a working model for sustainability...not just in the sense of green construction, but economical and social sustainability for the rural areas of our state.

It is amazing how little is known about green building by those who react most strongly against it. There is a standard for green building that is spreading like wildfire, not only among architects but in the engineering, construction, manufacturing and vending slices of the building industry.

The LEED standard (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) has become the standard benchmark for sustainable design. This program, organized by the US Green Building Council, (www.USGBC.org) has been established to create a basis for understanding the relationships between building systems and energy and environmental responsibility. There is a process (certification) by which the adherence to the specified design is insured. While the certification process is an added expense, the movement toward this kind of thinking is huge...many cities are now requiring new municipal projects to be designed according to LEED principals and many building owners and developers are seeing the value added aspects of building or renovating structures that have a LEED Certification.

As more and more participants in the building trades are becoming accustomed to responding to the need for and implications of sustainable design, the cost premium for delivery of efficient building is diminishing to the point of being nearly on a par with 'normal' construction. It is not about materials alone, but rather directed toward a synergistic relationship between site design, building systems, and appropriate choice and use of materials. The process is not perfect yet, but that is no reason not to address the issues and constantly be developing appropriate responses to energy and environmental concerns.

(Asbestos....Funny, though I've been involved in a number of abatement projects, I have not seen any evidence of continued use of asbestos, seems like this would have come up sometime in the last 20 years I've been practicing this architect craft, but I haven't heard a bit about it Given the legal ramifications, I don't think this would just slip by. However, when an owner doesn't care to pay for contract administration and special inspections and will accept low unqualified bids, they will get whatever they get and it is no one's fault but their own)

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Godot 6 years, 11 months ago

" Anonymous user

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus (Anonymous) says:

BTW, insurance companies will pay off on the insured value of the house. Whether, how and where the property owners choose to rebuild is entirely up to them.

No charge for the free lesson in how the world actually works."

Bozo has this pattern of seeing the world the way she wishes it were, rather than accepting reality.

Sorry, Bozo, wrong again.

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ASBESTOS 6 years, 11 months ago

"No, the "green" thing is, let's take what we know and implement it in intelligent ways, rather than just repeating the same stupidity just because there are vested interests that don't want change."

That WAS my point there BOZO. I agree the "Green" building with efficient systems and all is a good thing. HOWEVER, I used the committment to asbestos regulation as a comparison to how much the Government wants to get/STAY involved to get to the "GREEN" outcome.

If the EPA and the Government cannot regulate something as simple and easy as Asbestos and superfund sites in Kansas, screaming about regulating CO2 and promoting "Green" building is hypocritical.

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bearded_gnome 6 years, 11 months ago

what a great analogy Godot! ten points.

and the real key, all this sound and fury signifying nothing, and let the people of Greensburg decide...their homes, their businesses, their town. however some, bozo included, don't believe in truly free private property rights though.

"invested in stupidity" bozo, you get that in a fortune-cookie?

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 11 months ago

BTW, insurance companies will pay off on the insured value of the house. Whether, how and where the property owners choose to rebuild is entirely up to them.

No charge for the free lesson in how the world actually works.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 11 months ago

No, the "green" thing is, let's take what we know and implement it in intelligent ways, rather than just repeating the same stupidity just because there are vested interests that don't want change.

Godot and BG are obviously heavily invested in stupidity.

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Godot 6 years, 11 months ago

This whole "lets be green" thing reminds me of old movies with Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland, where they respond to adversity with, "Gee, gang, lets put on a show!"

Who could rain on that parade?

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Godot 6 years, 11 months ago

outdoor55, who is complaining? Asking questions about who is going to pay for, and who is going to require, conforming to a particular architectural concept is not "complaining."

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outdoor55 6 years, 11 months ago

I find it funny that people fighting to keep another coal burning power plant out of Kansas. But, when a town has the opportunity to conserve energy and help the environment, people complain about that as well. Oh wait, we should just build the coal fired power plant and give everyone in greensburg an industrial strength a/c. I guess you just can't make people happy.

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Godot 6 years, 11 months ago

"and I agree with you that this greeniewheenie move for poor Greensburg is just more of her political posturing. very very sad. can we impeach her?"

Not unless she has done something illegal.

Didn't I hear something about Seblius violating statute by appointing Lariviere to the KU Hospital Board?

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Godot 6 years, 11 months ago

Bozo, let's just say that it is highly likely that such things as solar panels, skylights, extra insulation, high efficiency HVAC, fluorescent light fixtures, wind turbines and sodd roofs will not be included in the cost to replace unless they were in place before the tornado struck.

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bearded_gnome 6 years, 11 months ago

bozoonthewrongwaybus, I coined the phrase "greeniewheenie" in describing your candidate Ydoom-Dranyam, for the city commission. still smartin' over that election buddy? your greeniewheenie candidate came in last place in this liberal lawrence.

second, you've proven to be completely meaningless vapid and empty of value. for example, when senator johnson fell stricken with the cerebrovascular problem that nearly killed him, you rushed to your computer and posted that it was a russian death plot! sheeeesh.


yeah, sod was green, along with the fleas, ticks, burs, and dirt floors. think we've advanced a little?


Godot, you are correct, now there's word that the gov was making this pronouncement about the iraq war at the calling of howard dean. she put her political fortune ahead of the needs of stricken kansas! shameful. and I agree with you that this greeniewheenie move for poor Greensburg is just more of her political posturing. very very sad. can we impeach her?

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 11 months ago

"Who will pay for this new "green" city? The insurance companies are obligated to replace what was there, not to improve upon it."

So if it was a house built circa 1900, they have to build using the style, materials and techniques of 1900? I didn't know that, Godot. Thanks for clearing that up for us.

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Godot 6 years, 11 months ago

Who will pay for this new "green" city? The insurance companies are obligated to replace what was there, not to improve upon it. Is Sebelius proposing another multi-million dollar construction project for the taxpayers to take on? And can an architect group and a governor tell the people of Greensburg how they have to rebuild their town?

Well, I guess the answer is "yes" if they could pack the city commission of Greensburg with Sorosites like Burress, McClure and Heckler.

Hey, now, there you go! Burress has a some place he can go to make a real impact.

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Tom Shewmon 6 years, 11 months ago

Oft times I get severely reprimanded for my comments on LJW, a globally recognized and award-winning on-line forum, and maybe well deserved, but my feelings are what I post.

Sebelius, firstly chastized W and the war for the lack of equipment and then the 'green' issue enters into the picture.

Why can we not just help these great folks of Kansas rebuild their lives? There is nothing wrong with 'green' I suppose.

It seems politically motivated and then when I saw Kathleen deliver the message on the news, I'm again reminded of a hint of 'it's about me and my political agenda' flavor.

I hope no one is offended by my thoughts--I seem to be under heavy scrutiny by the left AND right lately and want to be a kinder, more gentler LJW neighbor.

Thanks for reading and giving serious consideration to my post.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 11 months ago

"that's funny right there"-- to someone with a 5-year old's sense of humor, perhaps it is. From my perspective it merely indicates a lack of anything meaningful to say (admittedly, I'm not 5 years old.)

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ladysilk 6 years, 11 months ago

greeniewheenieness...that's funny right there, I don't care who ya are!

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 11 months ago

Actually, if done correctly, sod roofs are the best roofing system you can have.

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Dambudzo 6 years, 11 months ago

They are going back to sod roof bungalows and Buffalo chip heating?

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bearded_gnome 6 years, 11 months ago

do the residents of greensburg really want this, or is it just the agenda of gov. C.Bilious and her lefty fringie folks.

overwhelmingly the quotes in the article on this are from people outside of Greensburg! my guess, most of them would like some familiarity. the push for greeniewheenieness (there's a good word if I say so myself!) ignores the importance of comfort familiarity and accessibility in the human environment. it is more important that Greensburg be the town of the residents than to satisfy some fools' agenda.

sorry Greensburg residents that here too, you're having to put up with a lot besides the Governor and O'bama shilling you.

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ASBESTOS 6 years, 11 months ago

This "Green Building" is just a marketing ploy. The Architect may specify use of special materials, but when it gets to the builders, it is "slap it up, get it done, move on", as in the locust theory of building.

The main point of trying to utilize "Green Building" comes down to Quality Control. Now I know this one thing as a fact: ASBESTOS is not banned, and it is continued to be sold in products and ionstalled in buildings. Floor Tiles, Ceiling TIles, Drywall, and the joint compound. IT is the biggest headache in the construction industry. NEW materials (as well as those being imported under NAFTA where the countries do not have bans on adding asbestos) containing asbestos makes it into buildings all the time. Architects constantly state in their plans and specs all the time that "no asbestos containg materials will be used in construction of this building". This is what I am talking about the "Green Building" issue.

You can specify "Green" materials, but if there is no regulation, or if there is no oversight and quality control, it will not be "Green".

IT looks like to me that the Architect here is merely selling services, as per what usually happens. When the building actually happens and there are problems, the architects point to the specs and state that they have the specs, but there is not oversight.

I have seen that trick since the early 80's in construction and the advent of "Value engineering".

In order for green building to have any effect, it requires oversight and quality control. IF not, the contractors and builders will just do the quickest and easiest thing to get the building up. After that any defects or shortcomings will be ironed out in the courts.

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