Prefab and modular residential housing designed to be part of the ecosystems where they are built provide options for occupants that intend to best steward the places they call home. Over the last decade, many new and innovative products have come to market boasting low-impact building footprints, modern design, thoughtful scaling options, and sustainable materials. We've chosen to preview five new and innovative concepts: Rising Barn, Porch House, Back Country Hut, Nomadic Shack, and Hyla Hut.
According to the latest release from Northwest Farm Credit Services, agricultural real estate values in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Montana, are stable and increasing through the first half of 2017. Despite weaker commodity prices and less than favorable weather patterns in parts of the northwest, the constrained supply of properties for sale has continued to stabilize land values.
The USDA NRCS has awarded more than $22.6 million to drive innovation in conservation this year. Nationwide in 2017, 33 projects are receiving funding through the Conservation Innovation Grant program. There were a handful of innovative programs funded that are geared to the American West including several conservation finance projects.
Park County has experienced meaningful growth over the last 45 years. The estimated 2016 population for Park County was 16,114 people, up 3.1% from the 2010 census figure, which equates to an average of 0.50% a year. Projections show that Park County will have a population of 17,800 people by 2036, adding 1,000 people per decade or approximately the same growth rate as from 2010 to 2016.
The Bitter Root Resource Conservation & Development is combating the dangers of wildfire by reducing fuels through their fire mitigation program: the Hazardous Fuels Reduction Fuel Mitigation Grant Program. The program is a 50 / 50 cost-share in the form of a grant from the organization.
Northwest Farm Credit Services releases a Market Snapshot of land values quarterly. Their latest issue details market trends through 2016. The decrease in number of sales in 2013 - 2015 reflects constraints in supply rather than weak demand.
Across the region, demand remains strong for working ranches and good-quality agricultural properties due to a strong demand for grass and a limited inventory of good-quality properties. As is typical in the market, properties with premier recreational features or locales with limited private ownership are in highest demand.
The deadlines for local conservation districts and landowners to apply for funds under the Water Quality Grant Program (WQGP) and the Rangeland Health Assessments Program (RHAP), both Wyoming Department of Agriculture funding programs, are coming up in early June. Both programs require projects to have a 30% match, which can be cash or in-kind, and can also be federal funds such as 319 grand funds.
As part of their devotion to "the inextricable link between the public lands surrounding our private working lands", the Lemhi Land Trust joined forces with The Nature Conservancy and Pioneer Mountain Group to create the Central Idaho Rangelands Network to encourage collaboration and rangeland monitoring across a large landscape with diverse public and private ownership in Central Idaho.
As a second edition of their webinar series focused on forestry issues, the Western Landowners Alliance (WLA) recently hosted a panel discussion on the uses of and challenges inherent in using prescribed fire to manage forests. While the speakers agreed that prescribed fire is a useful tool for proper management in most places, there were resounding concerns from all of the panelists regarding the use of prescribed fire including public perception and landowner education, liability, personnel, planning and coordination, and cost.
The large task of preserving heritage and conserving natural resources across the American West takes multi-faceted and concentrated efforts. The private sector serves as an important partner in the collective work to achieve the preservation and conservation outcomes in many individual communities and ecosystems. Though there are many businesses across the country that traditionally support these efforts, the beer industry in particular has continued to support restoration, preservation and conservation efforts in both interactive and innovative ways.
In the historic Ellen Theater in downtown Bozeman, the visiting American Institute of Architecture team made their final presentation on their recommendations from the full draft report of the Bozeman R/UDAT study, a culmination of the Bozeman R/UDAT program, which engaged the community to plan the future of the distinctive and historic Northeast Neighborhood area.
As part of their recommendations, the group divided the study area into four distinct districts.
Across the entire United States, during the reference period (2015-2016), the dollar volume of land sales increased the most for timber land at 5% and residential land at 4%. Agricultural irrigated land sales fell by 1%, and non-irrigated land sales by dollar volume decreased by 2%, likely due to slump in commodity prices, according to the Land Market Survey released annually by the REALTORS® Land Institute and the National Association of REALTORS®.
This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Chisholm Trail, the most famous cow path in history. In the late 1800s, approximately five million head of cattle were trailed from Texas right through Bell County, where our founder and leader Kelly Beevers grew up, to railheads in Kansas.
We work to preserve and utilize the distinctiveness of place in large part to honor and integrate heritage. In doing so we connect people and strengthen our communities. Though we are based in Montana, work largely in the Northern Rockies, and focus our efforts in the American West, Kelly's roots reach down to Central Texas.
National agriculture industry consulting and CPA firm K-Coe Isom recently announced a new program aimed to help ranchers generate revenue from conservation projects while simultaneously reducing the rancher’s inherent risk of testing and implementing such projects. Funded by the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), the program is specific to ranchers whose property is located in priority sage grouse habitat or crucial mule deer winter range or designated mule deer migration corridors within Montana, Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho, Utah, Nevada, or California.
Just outside of Bozeman in Kelly Canyon, Jennifer and Chris Boyer raise boer and nubian goats on Farm 51. They provide sustainably-raised goat meat to restaurants in Bozeman and to consumers through the local Community Co-op. Farm 51 has grown organically from a hobby to a business for the Boyers.
Bozeman is one of three communities nationally that has been chosen for the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Regional / Urban Design Assistance Team (R/UDAT) project. The focus area for the Bozeman R/UDAT is the Northeast Neighborhood District. Within the area within the orange R/UDAT study boundary, 70% of land has potential for redevelopment in the next ten years. In addition, Montana Department of Transportation (MDOT) is spending $40M to redo and upgrade the Rouse corridor.