Sunday, December 07, 2008

Replacements for Red House Arrive
Funding from the National Science Foundation allowed us to seek and obtain matching funds from the California Wildlife Conservation Board to upgrade our housing. While the replacement houses for the Red House have been under construction, we have been busy with installing erosion controls on hillside behind the building site. Rana Creek's crew installed the materials and it looks great. We had a couple of rains and we hope for quick germination and more gentle rains to hold the hillsides and road verges. 
On Tuesday, December 2, the four parts of the 2 new cabins arrived at the gate of Hastings. A crew from Valley Home Development arrived with some very specialized equipment to move the buildings. With help from Jaime del Valle, the crew got things started. A slide show of the arrival can be seen here. Jaime called in some heavy help from Lindsey Friday to clear a couple of narrow passages in the road. With a few limbs trimmed, the entry way was cleared and by sunset the first of the four building sections was in place on the footings. By 3pm the next day, the other 3 building sections were in place. Valley Home Development crews will return Monday Dec 8 for 3-5 days of pulling the modular buildings together, installing the stem walls, trenching in the water, gas and power. We have been working with local contractors to come up with some green, low-cost alternatives to finish grade the site and install a deck and handicapped access ramp from a parking area. We hope to get the paving done by the end of January, but all depending on the rains. So far, the winter has been remarkably dry. Lucky for our construction project, but not such a great trend for ground water.