Three communities were awarded grants this week by the Vermont Downtown Development Board to fund local infrastructure improvements such as new sidewalks, signage and streetlights.The Vermont Downtown Development Board announced the awards totaling $127,594 on Monday for Morrisville, Rutland City and St. Albans City. The funds, which are from the state’s Downtown Transportation Fund, are available to communities that are part of the Vermont Downtown Program. Established in 1994, the Vermont Downtown Program helps invest in the economic growth and cultural landscape of Vermont’s cities, villages and towns. Funding Awards:Morrisville – $27,594 for sidewalk reconstruction on and around Main Street and Pleasant Street, as well as new sidewalk and streetlights on Portland Street. Matching funds were provided by the town, as well as $15,000 in private donations to the community’s downtown organization. This project continues the town’s efforts to improve pedestrian access within their downtown.Rutland City – $25,000 for phase 2 of the city’s new wayfinding signage program to direct visitors to downtown destinations such as the Paramount Theater, the Amtrak train station and local shops.St Albans City – $75,000 for new streetlights along Main Street, as part of a larger $1.5 million project to improve the city’s pedestrian infrastructure, including outdoor dining, trees and broader sidewalks in downtown. ‘These are terrific projects that recognize the importance of high-quality pedestrian amenities in support of downtown business development,’ said Noelle Mackay, Commissioner of the Department of Economic, Housing and Community Development and Chair of the Downtown Development Board. ‘The board is pleased to be able to support these projects, and to recognize the energy and commitment in each community that makes our downtowns so special.’ The Vermont Downtown Development Board also renewed the village center designation on Monday for Enosburg Falls, West Rutland, Royalton and South Royalton, which are four of the 102 village centers participating in the Vermont Downtown Program. Downtowns and village centers that are part of the Vermont Downtown Program are eligible for a number of benefits, including tax credits, loans and grants from various state agencies to help enhance economic opportunities, preserve historic buildings and improve infrastructure in core areas.For more information, visit www.historicvermont.org/programs/downtown.html(link is external).
FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Greentech Media:Solar topped natural gas and wind to claim a record share of new U.S. electric generating capacity last year, at nearly 40 percent, boosted by a vibrant residential sector that looks healthier than it has in years.2019 was a landmark year for the American power sector on several fronts. Wind crossed the 100-gigawatt threshold, and it overtook hydroelectric plants in total electricity generated. But solar stole the show, with four out of every 10 megawatts of capacity built last year represented by a PV panel.All told, the country added 13.3 gigawatts of new solar last year, bringing the cumulative total to 76 gigawatts, according to the U.S. Solar Market Insight report, published quarterly by the Solar Energy Industries Association and Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables.Solar accounted for 39.8 percent of new U.S. generating capacity brought online last year, blowing past natural gas at 32 percent and wind at 27 percent. It’s just the second time that solar was the leading source of new capacity, and the first since 2016.It’s hard to ignore the booming utility-scale market, which accounted for 8.4 gigawatts of last year’s solar additions — and where the development pipeline now stands at a record 48.1 gigawatts. The large-scale market is underpinned by the proliferation of state renewables mandates, rising corporate demand and costs that continue to drop in spite of the Trump administration’s solar import tariffs.Arguably the most exciting market segment, however, was the one centered on people’s homes. Residential solar installations have now fully recovered from the market contraction of a few years back — when then-leader SolarCity was acquired by Tesla — with a record 2.8 gigawatts added in 2019.[Karl Erik-Stromsta]More: The U.S. built 13.3GW of solar last year as the residential market regained its mojo U.S. added 13.3GW of new solar in 2019, pushing national total to 76GW