Wednesday, March 6, 2019

small scale business

small scale business

Port Townsend plan seeks to encourage small-scale business - Peninsula Daily News

Posted: 01 Mar 2019 01:30 AM PST

PORT TOWNSEND — The Port Townsend City Council agreed with the city Planning Commission's "holistic neighborhood planning" approach that will guide the development of the Rainier Street and the Upper Sims Way Subarea Plan.

Development Services Director Lance Bailey said Monday's three-hour joint meeting went very well and that "there were no major fundamental disagreements" between the planning department and the City Council.

"There were a lot a questions and comments, and I think we are on a good path," Bailey said.

The plan encourages artisan businesses, moving away from traditional economic development and focusing on entrepreneurial ventures.

"We are looking to develop micro-enterprises, those small businesses that can't afford the capital infrastructure to get going," said City Manager David Timmons.

"They are the types of small startups in the [Port Townsend Business Park] and in Glen Cove."

Bailey presented the 155-page document that provides an overview of the plan featuring five project objectives: vision and assets, community character, plan organization, meaningful community engagement, local opportunities, and jobs and housing balance.

The plan was developed with community input over the past two years.

Of the 175 acres of land in the subarea, 49 acres are already developed, 98.7 acres are vacant, 11 acres are underdeveloped and 15.7 are public lands or exempt.

The plan suggests that the vacant and underdeveloped land "provides an opportunity to meet much needed housing and employment needs within the City."

With the completion of the Rainier Street extension, the study says the area is a "gateway" ripe for redevelopment with housing and employment opportunities.

The plan calls for an interconnected and safe transportation network and a vibrant urban design concept while including open space and parks.

Timmons said the city began to take a more focused look at development patterns and consistency with plans in 2002.

He said that the problem with creative ideas and solutions is that they don't mesh well with the black-and-white of current zoning regulations.

"We needed to take a more comprehensive look and make sure our current regulations are consistent with development patterns and then put them in sync with each other," Timmons said.

"Currently they are not supportive of the changes in today's environment in terms of housing and economic growth."

In order to attract micro-enterprises, Timmons said the city has to be supportive in two ways.

"There needs to be capital infrastructure in the ground, and the regulations have to be consistent with those goals," he said.

"The planning needs to keep up with the code that's keeping out the negative effects of development."

Timmons said buying habits have changed. People don't want to see big box stores in Port Townsend and that the internet has taken retail to a completely different level.

"Just look in the recycling bins," he said. "There are a lot of Amazon boxes. The current regulations were written to address big box retailers who wanted to come to town. Our regulations are designed to thwart that, but are crushing everyone else.

"There was fear and phobia over big retail and it blocked everything else."

Timmons said after the language is tweaked and a final review, the Subarea Plan will be presented to the City Council in April. Public hearings will be conducted and he expects council adoption before summer.

"These regulations have been long in the making, going back two decades," Timmons said.

"This is putting it all together to implement it. Large development can be sited in the county where regulations will permit the kind of growth they'll eventually see there.

"Small scale startups are prime for this area."


Jefferson County Editor/Reporter Jeannie McMacken can be reached at 360-385-2335orat[email protected].

Gujarat announces policy for small-scale solar power generation - Business Standard

Posted: 06 Mar 2019 08:26 AM PST

Aspiring to fulfil Narendra Modi's ambition for raising the renewable power generation in the country, the on Wednesday announced a 'small scale distribution solar project' policy for producers of up to 500 KW to 4 megawatts (MW).

and said, "Gujarat's geographical situation has vast and immense potential for renewable power generation such as solar and wind We have framed a policy for small power producers of solar projects wherein even owner of a small waste land will be able to generate power and sell it in the state."

According to the policy, private landowners who have waste and non-productive land will be able to set up solar power projects with a capacity between 500 kilo watts to 4 MW.

This generated power will be purchased by power companies such as state-owned (GUVNL). The power produced will be directly fed into the 11 KW line of Gujarat Transmission Company Limited (GETCO).

The government owned power companies will carry out Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) of 25 years with the small-scale producers. The GUVNL will purchase from small producers, paying 20 paise more than the price raised in bidding process in other PPAs, except that of solar parks.

The said for this policy, no government land will be utilised. "The policy will also boost in generating more employment in the state," said Pradeepsinh Jadeja, (MoS) for Energy.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, March 06 2019. 21:56 IST

Virginia Beach company's buildings help redevelop Detroit - Virginian-Pilot

Posted: 06 Mar 2019 07:30 AM PST

If you've ever visited Walt Disney World or watched movies like "The Expendables," you may have witnessed an iconic piece of architecture right out of Hampton Roads and not even noticed.

The Virginia Beach based-SteelMaster Buildings has been designing and manufacturing prefabricated steel arch structures for almost four decades. Along the way, the company has constructed everything from simple storage sheds to several projects aiming to revitalize and redevelop Detroit.

"We've gotten into some really interesting projects," Senior Project Manager Greg Broderick said.

The history of SteelMaster's Quonset huts, which resemble half cylinders of steel laid on their sides, goes all the way back to World War I, Broderick said. The British Army designed Nissen huts as easy-to-construct barracks and other military buildings. The U.S. military followed suit in World War II at at Quonset Naval Base in Rhode Island.

When SteelMaster was founded in 1982, the Quonset hut was being used for mostly agricultural and industrial uses, Broderick said. It's a far cry from large-scale collaborations SteelMaster handles today, like a huge addition to the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in New York.

"It's really evolved into the kind of projects that we're doing now," he said.

One such project is True North – a Detroit housing community that was developed in 2017 by entrepreneur Philip Kafka's real estate company Prince Concepts. The 11-structure project was built on land that had been dilapidated since 1999, according to the project's website.

"They're everything from living space to work/living space," Broderick said, adding the community also includes a yoga studio and an Airbnb-like hotel unit.

The project was also a big challenge for his commercial design team at SteelMaster. The team had to push the limits of the steel structures by adding windows and a second story to the designs.

The versatility of the Quonset huts comes from the arched design of the buildings themselves, Broderick said. The basic layout is prefabricated and easy to construct, saving money for customers.

"It's something the majority of our clients can build themselves," he said.

Additionally, the huts are incredibly strong and last for decades. Broderick said the buildings have held together against wind speeds close to 200 mph.

Apart from True North, the team is also working on several other Detroit development projects, including a long row of apartments in a single half cylinder about 100 feet long and a large retail building with space for multiple tenants.

Broderick said it felt good to be part of helping revitalize a city like Detroit and creating a future for a city with a storied history.

Across the United States, SteelMaster has partnered with companies like Disney and Lockheed Martin. The former asked SteelMaster to design and build the roof for a restaurant in Disney's Animal Kingdom park in Florida. SteelMaster also provided the roofing for what is now the Oklahoma City Ballet's 28,000-square-foot headquarters.

"You can take this arch and put it together in so many different ways, almost like an Erector Set," said Director of Marketing Michelle Wickum.

The company's arched buildings have also been used in films like "The Expendables" and TV shows like "Orange is the New Black" and "Portlandia."

SteelMaster employs around 60 people in Virginia Beach and has distributors in more than 50 countries. In addition to the commercial design division, the company has local departments that handle smaller structures and sales to Spanish-speaking countries.

Zuckerberg: private, small-scale messaging is Facebook's future - Business Recorder

Posted: 06 Mar 2019 12:36 PM PST

SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook is moving away from being a "digital town square" to meet growing demands for secure, private messaging on a smaller scale, chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said Wednesday as he outlined a broad vision for transforming the social networking giant.

"I believe the future of communication will increasingly shift to private, encrypted services where people can be confident what they say to each other stays secure and their messages and content won't stick around forever," Zuckerberg wrote on his Facebook page.

"This is the future I hope we will help bring about."

The announcement suggests a new emphasis for Facebook as it seeks to navigate a crisis over privacy and data protection amid revelations on how it handles personal user data.

Zuckerberg said he sees a major shift for Facebook which over 15 years has helped build what he called "the digital equivalent of a town square."

He said that in the current environment, "people increasingly also want to connect privately in the digital equivalent of the living room."

Facebook has built the world's largest online platform with some 2.3 billion active users but has been criticized for enabling misinformation and manipulation, and for gathering vast amounts of personal data which may be used for targeted advertising.

A series of revelations on Facebook's handling of personal data has forced the company to review all its operations, and Zuckerberg has been pledging to improve data protection.

His latest missive suggests however that a more broadly-focused Facebook will move away from being a public platform to emphasize smaller-scale conversations that are secure and encrypted.

"Today we already see that private messaging, ephemeral stories, and small groups are by far the fastest growing areas of online communication," he said.

"Many people prefer the intimacy of communicating one-on-one or with just a few friends. People are more cautious of having a permanent record of what they've shared. And we all expect to be able to do things like payments privately and securely."

He said public social networks would "continue to be very important in people's lives" but that with growing demand for private interactions "there's also an opportunity to build a simpler platform that's focused on privacy first."

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2019

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