Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Geothermal Turbine-less 60% Brick "Landscaping"

As a builder's son, and I admit a person who lives in a new suburban development previously used for agriculture, I found this new sudivision in SW Lincoln intriguing, as does a fellow blogger whose initials are JE:

Obviously, if you read the covenants list, it's clear they are trying to create a specific aesthetic environment (funny to me how they are providing a "landscaped" community (I assume a few street trees and some bunches of tacky shrub roses, yes, you heard me) when, in fact, it was perfectly landscaped before they came in). The community of geothermal-ness is cool. My parents recently built a new home on an acreage and installed geothermal with a natural gas backup generator; I'm trying to get them to install a wind turbine.

Oh, but you can't have one at The Bridges (of Lancaster County?):

Antennas, Towers, and Satellite Dishes. No television antennas, radio
tower/antenna, wind powered electric generator, permanent generator or
satellite dish over two (2) feet in circumference shall be placed on any Lot
except on the interior of any structure. Satellite dishes shall be located in the
rear yard or affixed to the rear side of the structure. Note on the elevations the
proposed location for the Architectural Review Committee’s evaluation. All
wires, cables, conduits, or pipes shall be placed underground except that
portion necessary for service to the interior of any structure.

1) Most satellites have to point south, so if the back of your house points north you get no service? 2) Install that wind turbine in the living room.

But this is ok:

Solar Panels. Any solar panels placed on any residence constructed on any
Lot shall be mounted flush with the roof of such residence, and shall not be
located along any exterior wall of such residence nor in any yard of any Lot.
Note on the elevations the proposed location(s) for the Architectural Review
Committee’s evaluation.

But your roof must be:

Minimum pitch of 5:12, or as may be dictated by a unique architectural style.
Note on the elevations the proposed pitch for the Architectural Review
Committee’s evaluation.

And the front elevation must be 60% stone or brick and the back 30%. Hey, if I was the developer, I'd probably rquire a lot of the same things. Much of this is standard stuff. It just always baffles me to see planned communities that must A) Insert landscaping / create a "natural envrionment" and B) Do so, in part, via the guise of architectural specifications (shouldn't they require minimum square footage for landscaping by each homeowner? No, they only require two 2" caliper trees on the street side of the house). And isn't it interesting how a geothermal community, one which I agree would perhaps attract a few liberal treehuggers, won't allow other types of clean energy save solar panels, perhaps the most expensive option? Or has geothermal become nothing more than an advertising gimic, something to promote in the face of rising natural gas prices? Is it like saying "We use only the finest Anderson windows to help reduce energy costs?"

Not sure what I'm saying, I'm complicit in this on my .2 acre lot, but I'm trying my darndest to live well, bring back native plants, garden green, create a small rain garden, not leave lights on, the a/c too low, keep the garage open and closed accordingly to regulate house temp, et cetera.

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