Contributing Editors



Siblings Synthesize Business with Storage in VA

by Holly Robinson October 19, 2009 8:44 AM
As first posted on Richmond (VA)’s timesdispatch.com on October 19, the sign pronouncing the nondescript beige building on Chamberlayne Avenue, AAAA Chamberlayne Storage, is a bit of a misnomer.

From a distance, this warehouse looks like any other in Everytown, USA. However, under closer scrutiny, you will find a nearly 60-year-old building that has been gutted and renovated by its owners, brothers David and Tom Kern, with 500 storage units inside the 77,000-square foot building that opened 10 days ago. Yet these siblings have not limited their new space to storage alone.

"We wanted to do something a little different" than offering a place for people to store their belongings, said Tom Kern, the older of the two brothers.

And they mean business – literally. The brothers have added a business center with computers, office chairs, and even gourmet coffee. The building is wired for Wi-Fi, with carpeted hallways. High-backed chairs surround a large conference table in a glassed-in, “boardroom-esque” conference room. [More]

Westy Self Storage Co-hosts Beer Bash for NJ Animal Shelter

by Kim Kilpatrick October 18, 2009 11:47 AM
According to recordernewspapers.com, Chatam, New Jersey’s own Westy Self Storage and Gary’s Wine & Marketplace (in Madison) combined forces to host “Ruff Draught,” a beer tasting, from 7-9PM last Thursday, October 15 in the grand lobby of Westy Self Storage, 15 River Road, Chatham, to benefit Mount Pleasant Animal Shelter on Route 10. The tickets for the beer bash sold for $35 per person, and all proceeds from this event benefitted this East Hanover shelter.

Mount Pleasant Animal Shelter is a “no kill” non-profit animal welfare organization that currently receives no government funding, and relies solely on the generosity of the public to save homeless cats and dogs. Its mission is to provide exceptional care for homeless animals, to promote spaying and neutering and micro-chipping. Additionally, Mount Pleasant Animal Shelter provides humane education to the public while working to place homeless cats and dogs in safe, permanent and loving homes. At Mount Pleasant, no animal is ever euthanized for lack of space.

“We are so grateful to our good neighbor Westy Self Storage for providing the venue for our event, and, of course to Gary’s Wine and Marketplace for providing the fine beverages,” said Michelle Chalmers, Morris, Development Director at Mount Pleasant Animal Shelter.  “Without the help of such caring organizations, our fundraising efforts will not be nearly as successful.” [More]

Archview Storage Worth $2.3 Million? So Says Missouri’s Department of Transportation

by Tony Gonzalez October 18, 2009 11:26 AM
In a property transaction worthy of the board game Monopoly, according to an October 18 posting on stltoday.com, the City of St. Louis, who once sold the property now housing Archview Storage, for just $2 now needs to buy the property back, but for $2.3 million, for construction of a new Mississippi River bridge.

Roughly 2 years after engineers selected the ramp routes for a new bridge, city agency Land Reutilization Authority agreed in ‘03 to sell publicly owned land in that path to a developer for $2. This same agency rejected its own staff's recommendation in early ‘06 to dump the deal because of the bridge.

Now, Missouri’s Department of Transportation is paying $2.3 million to put the property back into the public's hands.

Mayor Francis Slay‘s office says that in hindsight it was a poor transaction, but the decision was made against a backdrop of uncertainty that the bridge would ever be built. [More]

House Panel Considers Ban on Imported Nuclear Waste Storage

by Kim Kilpatrick October 17, 2009 8:58 AM
Murfreesboro (TN) Democratic Representative Bart Gordon said Friday (October 16) a ban on importing foreign radio active waste is needed to ensure there is ample space to store waste generated in the U.S., including at Tennessee research facilities and Tennessee Valley Authority nuclear plants, according to an October 17 posting on the tennesean.com.

Representative Gordon participated in a hearing by the House Energy and Commerce Committee's Energy and Environment subcommittee on legislation he co-sponsored to enforce a ban.

This proposed legislation was prompted by an application from EnergySolutions Incorporated to bring in up to 20,000 tons of low-level radioactive waste from Italian nuclear power facilities to the United States, where it would be processed at a company plant in Oak Ridge, Tennessee; any remaining material would be shipped to a company storage facility in Clive, Utah.

That request, which was made to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), has been in limbo, waiting for the resolution of a lawsuit over the application. The company sued a regional low-level radioactive waste oversight group Northwest Compact, challenging its authority to block the importation of foreign waste. The company won at the district court level in May, 2009, but an appeal is pending in the tenth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. [More]

K-Mart Converted to Self-Storage in PA?

by Winnie Hsiu October 17, 2009 8:38 AM
According to an October 17 posting of the timesherald.com (an online newspapers covering Norristown and Montgomery Counties in Pennsylvania), the current property owners of a vacant K-Mart in the Eagleville Plaza on Ridge Pike would like to convert it into a self-storage facility. (This particular K-Mart closed in early 2009 as part of a corporate consolidation to eliminate under-performing stores.)

Vice President of Acquisitions and Development for Kimco Realty (Lutherville, Maryland-based company), Geoffrey Glazer asked the Board of Supervisors on Thursday, October 15, to schedule a public hearing for a text amendment to the Ridge Pike Business District (RPBD) zoning ordinance to allow self-storage facilities.

Following detailed questions regarding the proposal, the board unanimously agreed to advertise and schedule the public hearing.

“That K-Mart was built more than 40 years ago. We could have waited to see if the retail market would turn around, but we decided to be more proactive,” Glazer said. “We want to put a climate-controlled, mini-storage facility there now.” [More]

Carol Stream (IL) Park District Segues Into New Storage

by Holly Robinson October 17, 2009 8:16 AM
The Carol Stream Park District moved into its new vehicle storage facility to allow for more space and better work environments according to an October 16 posting on mysuburbanlife.com (an online news source for Chicago’s Western suburbs.)

Director of Park and Facilities Bill Rosenberg stated that prior to the move to the new, enclosed facility at 280 Kuhn Road; vehicles were stored outside, in the elements, at Armstrong Park, while two small barns held equipment.

“It wasn’t big enough for the vehicles to be inside,” Rosenberg said. “Those other barns will eventually be coming down anyway”

Inside the new facility, all trucks, tractors, mowers, small hand tools and hand mowers fit nicely and are conveniently accessible.

“We can keep all of our trucks inside, so there is no chance of vandalism or weather (affecting them),” Rosenberg said. [More]

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SoCal Search for Storage Shrinks to Six

by Tony Gonzalez October 17, 2009 7:41 AM
Following an extensive search for a public safety storage facility to shelter reserve emergency equipment for the fire and police departments, officials narrowed the list to a half dozen locations, according to an October 16 posting on santamonicadailypress.com.

Those 6 potential locations - 3 in and around the Santa Monica Airport - are to be presented to the community on November 18 during a workshop at the Ken Edwards Center, where the public will be invited to provide input on whether the proposed sites meet certain criteria, including providing major arterial access and complementing existing land uses.

The proposed facility is needed to store reserve emergency and training vehicles and specialized equipment, which are currently stored outside in multiple locations, exposing them to the Mother Nature, thus shortening their useful life. Without one central storage facility, residents and officials alike have concerns regarding response times since all equipment on vehicles is removed and stored indoors to prevent theft. Obviously, this causes some delay when the equipment then needs to be loaded during emergency calls. [More]

Energy Storage Plant Construction Approved by NY State Public Service Commission

by John Stevens October 16, 2009 10:49 AM
As first reported in an October 16 posting on reuters.com, Beacon Power Corporation (Nasdaq: BCON) announced that the New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) has granted the Company a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN) for its proposed 20 MW flywheel frequency regulation plant in Stephentown, New York, and approved the project’s overall financing. At PSC’s October 15th meeting, it was agreed that Beacon’s proposed flywheel plant in Stephentown is in the public’s interest.

In September, the PSC affirmed that Beacon’s Stephentown plant had met all relevant PSC environmental requirements, and now, with the PSC’s final two decisions now in place, the Company is authorized to apply for applicable permits, as well as submitting any final plans/drawings to PSC for review, and prepare to construct and operate the plant.

"We are excited to be able to support the development of new, state-of-the-art facilities, which will aid us in improving our electricity use," said Commission

Chairman Garry Brown. "The facility’s flywheels are designed to store excess energy when the generated power supply exceeds demand and conversely deliver it back to the grid when demand exceeds supply. This project will help fully utilize electricity generated from renewable power sources, which is often generated at times when demand is low." [More]

Tulsa (OK) Thieves Targeting Self Storage Units

by Holly Robinson October 16, 2009 10:29 AM
An October 15 posting on NBC-affiliate website www.kjrh.com in Tulsa, Oklahoma, police surveillance has begun at self storage unit companies throughout the city, as Tulsa police burglary detectives work to catch thieves who have broken into 100 mini-storage units between 10 businesses in the past three weeks, stealing over $100,000 in property thus far.

Sergeant Brandon Watkins heads TPD's Burglary Unit, and said that these burglars strike at night and have avoided being filmed by surveillance cameras at the entrance of the businesses – so far.

"The burglars are going in, usually hitting the back of the business, cutting a hole in the fence, driving a cart right through it and taking their time burglarizing these mini-storage units," said Watkins. [More]

Wind and Battery-Storage Facility in Maui (HI) Could Start Operations in 2012

by Kim Kilpatrick October 15, 2009 11:19 AM
According to an October 15 posting on marketwire.com, Sempra Generation, a subsidiary of Sempra Energy just announced it has acquired Auwahi Wind Energy LLC, a company developing a 22-megawatt (MW) wind energy and battery storage project in Maui, Hawaii, from Shell WindEnergy Inc., a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell; terms of the agreement were undisclosed.

This project could begin construction in 2011 and commence commercial operations in 2012 on the Ulapalakua Ranch in the remote southeastern region of Maui.

"This project further expands Sempra Generation's footprint in one of the fastest growing renewable energy markets while further advancing the sustainability goals of Maui and the state of Hawaii, which remains consistent with our growing renewable presence in the southwestern United States " said Michael W. Allman, President and CEO of Sempra Generation. [More]
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