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Pine Hills Neighborhood Association told: Solarize Albany

September 18, 2014

By Alexander Horton

Neighborhood and city officials Thursday night were encouraged to increase the use of solar energy throughout the city at the monthly meeting of the Pine Hills Neighborhood Association. is month’s Association meeting. Steve Andersen from Solarize D.O.E trekked from Syracuse to talk to the Association about solarizing Albany. The mission of Solarizing Albany is to strengthen neighborhoods by increasing residential scale solar energy through group buying to maximize benefit to community members, Andersen said.

“The intent is for neighbors to help neighbors,” said Anderson, who said that when one person buys a unit it decreases the price for other people interested in buying in the community. The program began in 2009 in Portland Oregon, and rapidly grew larger. Solarize D.O.E has already come to Rensselaer county where 30 units have already been installed in Troy. The net cost presented was around $9,000 to have the units installed but the numbers Andersen had for Troy was around $6,000 per unit.

Steve Andersen from Solarize D.O.E.

Steve Andersen from Solarize D.O.E.

The University of Albany Student Association club Community Outreach headed by Donovan Swanson also made an appearance and talked to the Association about their annual Pine Hills Cleanup, which is set for October 12th. Community Outreach will work with The Pine Hills Interest Group to help organize members of the community to also get involved with U Albany students during the cleanup.

Next on the agenda Nina Ferguson from Capital Car Share talked about the improvements to the program started in August of this year. The program has six cars around Albany and one located in the Pine Hills area. The program provides members with the ability to reserve cars for use 24/7.

Donovan Swanson talking about Community Outreach

Donovan Swanson talking about Community Outreach

The Pine Hills Association is also looking for new members to join, there are currently 100 members and president Virginia Hammer would really like to get that number up this year. Interested individuals may contact Virginia Hammer through the Associations website signing up in October will give new members three months free. The Committee on University and Community relations has also been active in trying to provide both students and members of the Pine Hills community with tips and points to remain safe while traveling through the community while off campus as well as outside their homes. Public Safety officer Joe Acquaviva also reported that there was a rise in car larcenies and day time burglaries, and has advised the community to be more alert when locking doors and leaving their homes.-30-


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