Who buys Katerra’s assets, eviction moratorium gets last-minute extension, and more
Greetings and welcome for another recap of the day. If you haven’t registered yet, tomorrow marks the start of Façades + New York, a hybrid event with both panels and in-person demonstrations and an online component.
Here’s what you need to know today:
Volumetric Building Companies acquires the assets of Katerra
After prefab modular construction start-up Katerra filed for bankruptcy and abruptly closed in June, the question remained as to what would happen to its assets. Architecture studios previously purchased by the company have become, or have made progress to become independent again, and today Volumetric Building Companies (VBC), a modular construction company based in Philadelphia, announced that it has been granted approval to ‘buy Katerra’s automated plant in Tracy, California. . With the approval of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas, VBC has acquired the 577,000 square foot Tracy plant (and accompanying offices) and will use it to produce items of construction, but also a company located on the west coast. . VBC encourages former Katerra employees in Tracy to reapply with them.
After all, the national moratorium on evictions is extended
After the CDC’s moratorium on evictions, first enacted last September to stem an expected increase in homelessness during the throes of the pandemic, ended earlier this week, it looked like millions of Americans were at risk. potentially losing their home. Neither the Biden administration nor Congress had decided on Monday to expand the effort, but yesterday the CDC issued a new temporary moratorium on evictions in US counties suffering from high rates of COVID infections. 19 – at the time of writing, which covers 90 percent of all Americans. The new measure will apply until October 3, buying two months for tenants at risk of losing their homes.
However, in a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court previously ruled that President Biden did not have the power to extend the initial moratorium after July 31 through an executive order. This paves the way for a possible legal battle in the future, and it is not certain that the current moratorium will be maintained.
H / t at CBS News
The American Construction Association launches a series of climate-friendly measures
On Tuesday, acknowledging the existential global threat of climate change, the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) announced an initiative to encourage construction of less carbon-intensive projects, among other environmentally friendly measures. AGC said it would work with its members to push manufacturers to produce more fuel-efficient equipment, offer advice on reducing equipment idling, and share information on innovations such as trailers and solar-powered construction site lighting. He also pointed out that construction is only responsible for two percent of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, compared to one-third of emissions from the built environment itself. In light of this, the bulk of AGC’s climate initiatives aim to push customers to build more responsibly, for example, by calling for a national strategy to invest in resilient infrastructure, modernize public buildings and accelerate construction. ‘authorization of projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, among other actions. When asked if the AGC would encourage members to work with architects and building designers to improve environmental performance, a spokesperson pointed to the association’s ongoing joint committee with AIA. Stephen Sandherr, Chairman and CEO of AGC, also said that “architects deserve credit for having faced this for years”.
An unsightly fence covered an iconic sculptural landscape of the Hudson Valley
A monumental work of land art by sculptor Harvey Fite has become the center of a controversial battle in New York’s Hudson Valley. In 37 years, Fite hand-built a vast stone maze and the 6.5 acres Opus 40 remains visible for visitors to visit. However, a gap between the non-profit organization that manages Opus 40 and the current owners of the former Fife house next door led to the installation of a 400-foot-long chain link fence between the two properties, spoiling the views of both sides. The association claims that visitors to the house, which is regularly rented on Airbnb, organized loud parties and camped nearby, posing a threat to Opus 40.
H / t au New York Times
London’s Marble Arch Mound reopens with free entry after debacle
MVRDV’s Marble Arch Mound opened its doors to less than stellar reviews in London, as disappointed visitors climbed the man-made hill, complained and received their money through Westminster City Council. After closing the attraction on July 30, the council has since apologized and reopened the mound of scaffolding covered in sedum and dirt to the public, but for free. The board will wait until September, when more of the attraction’s plants have grown.
H / t at Dezeen
More and more employees are starting to rally against returning to the office
Employers (and the real estate industry) are pushing harder and harder to get workers back to their physical offices by Labor Day, but employees are reportedly just as opposed to the mandates. Google has canceled plans to force workers back to the office in the fall, Facebook is giving employees the option to work remotely all the time, and 40% of those polled said they’d rather quit than come back as before. .
H / t at The real deal