Building Procedes

Well, quite a bit of work has been done on the cottage. I have a great team on the site headed by Gavin Fortuin and his colleague Roland. The gables have been repaired a new room has been prepared inside for the toilet and the floor of the living room has been excavated in preparation for the earthen floor. I met Diane on site on Thursday. She has made and earthen floor before. In fact she has built a cob house along William Moffat drive in Port Elizabeth. You can see it here.

Water for the works is still a big problem.

In the meantime we have moved the cattle over the stream to the grazing on the road side of the property.
The grazing is good there, but I was concerned to have them close to the road not trusting that they would not want to wonder off. The have been very well behave though since I put them there on Wednesday. I just moved them to a new patch of pasture this morning.

The NH bloody BRC

Got my “enrolment certificate” from the NHBRC today. (they took thirteen days to issue a certificate they promise on their website to issue in 24 hours) Took it straight to the bond registration attorneys. They promise to send it off to Cape Towns deeds office immediately. This should then take three weeks before the bond is registered and the property is ours. I cant think of anything that could still go wrong, but it has been such a long ride that I can believe that its almost done. Three more weeks!

In other News I made a firm offer to rend the 9 ha of overgrown bush to the east of us yesterday. I offered R21000.00 for 5 years and I offered to pay up front. The offer was well received but there is a meeting with the lawyers that will bring this matter to some conclusion.

How green is your building?

 People often make vague references to how “green’ their building is. The Green Building Council of South Africa has a very comprehensive system of “star ratings” which definitively rate a building’s greenness. You may want to pressurize your employers to make sure their premises are green, We have worked through the Green Building Council’s thick manual and come up with this short list of questions you can ask your boss about the building in which you work:
Management
Is there a building users guide explaining all aspects of how the building is best used to achieve green objectives? If not, when will there be one available?
Has an a air tightness test been carried out showing leakage rate of less than 15 cub m/hr/sqm at relative pressure of 50 Pa?
Indoor Environmental Quality
Is 95% (or more) of the usable area is naturally ventilated in accordance with SANS 10400-O (minimum 5% openable area)?
Are external views are available to 60% (or more)  of the usable area, by direct line of sight?
Does 60% or more of the usable area have a Daylight Factor of not less than 2% at desk height level under a uniform design sky?
Energy
Does the building comply with SANS 204: 2008 (Energy Efficiency in Buildings)?
Transport
Is there reliable public transport within 1000 m?
Are any four of the following within 400 m of public entrance of building:
·         bank/atm
·         convenience store/ supermarket
·         medical facilities
·         post office
·         restaurant
·         Gym
·         Library
·         School.
Does your building accommodate cyclists with showers and bicycle racks?
Water
Are 50% (or more) of the toilets in the building flushed with harvested rainwater?
Is 50% of more of landscape irrigation achieved with harvested rain water?

Cottage roof repairs

The thing is……each of the trusses is not level with the next, so we have to fit purpose built “spacers” to each top cord before we can place the purlins. This takes a lot of time and effort. My arms are tired. My legs are tired. But my spirit is soaring!