Daily Archives: February 25, 2013

Maxipad to grace Indian Head Road in Riverside

Good bye to all that

Good bye to all that

112 Indian Head, 2 acres in the 1-acre zone, sold for $5.3 million last fall, an impressive figure, but not as impressive as the $7,250,000 original 2010 price. A nice older house but as I suggested here back in 2010, its value was its land, not the charm of an old house destined for the dumpster.

And tomorrow night the new owners will come closer to accomplish that by applying to the P&Z for approval to build what seems like a pretty big house to me:

JKLR LLC. wants to demolish a home and build a 12,215-square-foot residence, new driveway, two detached garages, an accessory living structure, pool, spa, bath house and patios on a 2.07-acre lot at 112 Indian Head Road.

Do the math with me here – the FAR Czar in his wisdom decreed that the maximum allowable house on a two acre lot shall be 7,841 sq. feet – 43,560 X 2 X 0.09 FAR

The maximum allowable house size on one acre is 5,880.00 (in the one-acre zone. In a two acre zone, that same one acre is punished and the FAR size is reduced to 3,920 sq.ft. Does that makes sense to you? Never mind ).

But if 7,842 sq feet is deemed too large for the two-acre zone, and 5,880 sq.ft. has been determined to be the maximum ideal size of a home in the one-acre zone, how is it that a 12,215 sq.ft. house in the one acre zone is appropriate? Why is a home owner allowed 7,851 on one two-acre plot and 55% more, 12,215, on another two acre lot?

I am not objecting to this large house going up, but I do object to the utter lunacy of the Floor Area Ratio scheme that’s been foisted on Greenwich property owners; it has survived every attempt to instill some rationality into the process while the RTM has abdicated its role in governing the town by leaving the enactment of ever-more-onerous FAR regulations  to the demented, arrogant Land Use Committee and the staff of the P&Z.

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Sequester NASA

Sweat shop

Sweat shop

If there is any limit to our own government’s stupidity you won’t find it at NASA, which is out with a report today that says that global warming has already cut worker productivity by exactly ten percent. That certainly sounds scientific, doesn’t it? I mean, they use real numbers and all that, so the “science” is settled! It might make you wonder how America could have grown and prospered 100 years ago, when factories were cooled, barely, by drafts coming in through windows, tenement houses lacked even air shafts and field hands worked directly under the sun, eh?

Well I have the true, scientific answer: before air conditioning Washington would shut down for three months every summer and the politicians would flee. That respite from government meddling for one quarter of each year made all the difference. Now we’re inundated by government regulations and laws 24/7, 12 months a year, and suffer from agencies like NASA that once had a scientific purpose and is now just a collection of political hacks.

Save the nation: ban air conditioning.

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Gene mapping or, the Irish riddle solved

Off to O'Malley's

Off to O’Malley’s

Drinking to excess traced back 10 million years  to ape genes. Or 3,000 years to Shamus O’Reilly.

The boozing gene can be traced back 10million years to the common ancestor humans share with chimpanzees and gorillas, new research claims.

It is believed these ancient forebears were the first to pick up fruits fermenting on the ground after they developed a lifestyle away from the trees.

Individuals able to stomach the boozy fruit would have survived better in this new environment than those who could not, programming the ability into their descendants’ genetic codes.

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In ObamaLand, everything’s for sale

Never pass up a free meal

Never pass up a free meal

According to The New York Times, $500,000 will get you four meetings a year with the President of the United States. I’m insulted that the man would sell out his country so cheaply.

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More activity

25 Copper Beech

25 Copper Beech

25 Copper Beech sold for $2.4 million, $2.795 ask. Good house, decent yard, kids’ rooms are up, master and another bedroom down. That ought to be very attractive for parents of teens, a little offsetting for those with small ones, although I would think that in these days of intercoms and whatnot it shouldn’t be an issue. Obviously, whoever bought it didn’t mind the layout.

17 Dorchester, Riverside, has an accepted offer just days after being put up for sale. Asking price was $2.825 million, it sold last in 2008 for $2.875. So for Riverside, at least, we’re back to pre-crash levels, at least for new, almost new, and tear-downs. This one is “almost new”.

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Another contract

19 Angus19 Angus Lane, $4.995 million, has an executed contract. I wrote about this property when it came on briefly in May at $5.295.  I thought it was a beautiful house then and nothing changed this time except the asking price dropped a bit.

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Rudolph or War Horse, does it really matter?

 

You vant to eat him, ja?

You vant to eat him, ja?

Ikea recalls its meatballs due to horse meat content. “Our customers expect to find tasty, wholesome reindeer in their meatballs,”Sven Gustaffsen, Ikea’s Swedish Chef explained to reporters, “and so this was absolutely unacceptable, once we were caught.”

Check the link for Twitter reactions – better than the main article itself.

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Back Country still isn’t moving with alacrity

 

128 Porchuck Rd

128 Porchuck Rd

128 Porchuck Road has cut its price to $4.950 million from $5.5. The owners paid $5.2 million for it in 2003 and tried reselling it in 2009-2010 for $6.5 but let it lapse after a year, bringing it back in 2012 at the aforesaid price. Nice yard, very nice house, but I question whether the back country has recovered to the 2003 price level. We’ll find out.

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Maybe Lou Caravella should sell his Orchard Street property to these guys

They're off to see the mayor ...

They’re off to see the mayor …

Minister Farrakhan urges blacks to buy land collectively, use gang members to protect it. Betcha that would get Lou’s neighbors to stop worrying about the Jews.

The Minister Louis Farrakhan, 79, delivered his annual Saviors’ Day sermon on Sunday. As is usually the case, the three-hour address covered a variety of topics ranging from current events to the faith leader’s contentious views on race relations. Of particular note was an economic plan he posited — one in which African Americans would come together to invest in land — and a pledge to reach out to gang leaders to ask them for assistance in protecting the Nation of Islam’s interests.

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Accepted offer in Riverside, finally

 

22 Dawn Harbor

22 Dawn Harbor

22 Dawn Harbor, asking $3.195, reports an accepted offer. Great yard, decent street off Indian Head, but the house needs a lot of reconfiguring, or that was the opinion of clients I showed it to and apparently most of the rest of the market, because it’s been looking for a buyer for 537 days.

Much of that delay was probably attributable to its price. The owner paid $3.4 million for it in 2007 (after it had sold for $2 million in 2004 – those were the days) and was determined to get his money back, so priced it there in 2011 and kept it at $3.4  for a long time, vacant. I ‘d be inclined to gut it and start anew or simply raze the house; , if the agreed upon price is low enough, in what I assume will be the $2s, that may be what happens here.

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Early morning real estate report

17 Sherwood

17 Sherwood

Steal this house. 17 Sherwood Avenue sold Friday for $1.680. I thought this house was a bargain; clients I showed it to had various objections, ranging from school district to (very, very) low ceiling height in the original (1737 – George Washington bumped his head there in 1775) living room, but there you have it. This was a bank sale – former owner paid $3.150 million for it in 2007.

122 Riverside Avenue

122 Riverside Avenue

Executed contract: 122 Riverside Avenue, asking $1.075 million -  the buyer’s getting it for less. A half acre, but jammed up next to the railroad tracks. Hey, you want land in Riverside you can pay a lot or you can compromise on location. A relatively modest new home here probably has greater rental potential than a sale, but its fate – tear down vs rehab, rental vs sale –  will be determined later. Stay tuned.

Swampland price cut: 0 Mohawk Lane, four acres, now wants $850,000. That’s down a bit from its 2006 asking price of $1.850, but a man’s reach should exceed his grasp and all that. Interesting that 4 acres up here in the Northeast Kingdom is worth less than a 1/2 acre on the tracks in Riverside.

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Sequestration may force Congressmen onto commercial flights

 

Congress people relax after a grueling session at the Bali global warming conference

Congress people relax after a grueling session at the Bali global warming conference

Cut in military budget may cause Air Force to stop providing free flights around the world to our ruling class. It’ll never happen – this is the military equivalent of firing school crossing guards, but my response is , oh please, oh please? Pampered jerks.

UPDATE: WaPo: Democrats’ biggest fear is that the sequester won’t hurt. Which is why, though they’ll never allow their private jet fleet go down, they’re making such an effort to make certain it hurts citizens.

In the long partisan conflict over government spending, the sequester is where the rubber meets the road. Obama is betting Americans will be outraged by the abrupt and substantial cuts to a wide range of government services, from law enforcement to food safety to public schools. And he is hoping they will rise up to demand what he calls a “balanced approach” to deficit reduction that replaces some cuts with higher taxes.

But if voters react with a shrug, congressional Republicans will have won a major victory in their campaign to shrink the size of government. Instead of cancelling the sequester, the GOP will likely push for more.

“It would be a big problem for the White House if the sequester came and went and nobody really noticed anything. Then people will start saying, ‘Well, maybe we can cut spending,” said John H. Makin, a resident scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute who penned a recent Wall Street Journal piece titled “Learning to Love the Sequester.”

Adding to the liberal angst is concern that the scale of the cuts may be overstated, at least in the short term. While the sequester orders the White House to withdraw $85 billion in spending authority from affected agencies in the fiscal year that ends in September, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office predicts that agencies will reduce actual spending by only about $44 billion, with the remaining cuts carried over into future years.

Compared with total 2013 discretionary spending, that’s a cut of less than 4 percent.

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