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San Francisco voters approve Lennar project

BY HBSDEALER Staff

While most home builders are seriously cutting back in the face of a greatly reduced housing market, Lennar has earned approval on a huge new project in San Francisco that includes provisions for a city football stadium.

The national home builder won a vote from San Francisco voters, by a 61 percent margin, to turn a 770-acre parcel of waterfront property into housing, shops, offices and a new football stadium for the San Francisco 49ers.

The builder faced pressure from residents on the 10-year project, namely on concerns of affordable housing. Lennar has agreed to set aside 32 percent of the planned 10,000 homes for low- to mid-income residents

As part of the deal, the company also agreed to set aside the space for the new stadium, provided the 49ers decide to stay in the city, and also add parks and other infrastructure improvements.

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Green Building Council offers new educational tools

BY HBSDEALER Staff

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has added new educational tools, including a review of the USGBC’s Leader in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) course offerings.

Greenbuild365.org also offers courses, called “Green Bytes,” in green building education, including a number of videos, podcasts and articles.

In a statement from the USGBC, Peter Templeton, senior vp-research and education, said, “The building industry is changing; we are no longer designing and constructing buildings in the same way we have always done.”

The group also is offering a “media library” with videos of keynote speakers from the council’s recent Greenbuild conference.

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KraftMaid cuts 400 jobs in Ohio

BY HBSDEALER Staff

KraftMaid cabinets has cut approximately 400 jobs at factories in the state of Ohio because of the downturn in the housing market, according to a report by the Associated Press. The division of Masco cut work force at cabinet plants in Middlefield and Orwell, Ohio.

Aspokesperson told the news service that the plants could be reopened if the housing market improves.

In its first-quarter earnings statement in April, Masco reported net income fell to $2 million from $143 million in the same period last year. Masco’s companies include Delta Faucet, KraftMaid cabinets and Behr paints.

Net sales fell 13 percent to $2.45 billion from $2.8 billion in the same period last year.

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