Tahoe In Depth Publishes 10th Anniversary Edition

Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Tahoe In Depth publication

Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Tahoe In Depth publication

This past week, the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency published the 10th Anniversary edition of Tahoe In Depth.  For over a decade, this publication has offered some of the most insightful details about what their organization is doing and has done to protect the Tahoe Basin.

In this special 10th anniversary issue, they cover the intersecting 10th anniversary of the 2012 Regional Plan Update, which was approved on 12.12.12, and take a look back at some outstanding stories from past issues.

New stories on mushroom foraging, epic philanthropy, Take Care Tahoe campaigns, and more round out the winter issue.

They are incredibly grateful to their many subscribers who continue to support Tahoe In Depth. Every little bit helps them to continue to share Lake Tahoe environmental news with you twice a year. If you aren’t a subscriber, consider becoming one this holiday season.

If you have plans to start to design and build a home within the Lake Tahoe Basin, it will take time and local expertise to get your permit.  Within our architect firm at Lake Tahoe in Incline Village, we offer a wide variety of services to help you get your permit sooner than later.  Among this list:

  • Personal Architectural Design Services in Lake Tahoe
  • Custom Interior Design
  • Site Planning
  • Space Planning
  • Permit Processing Assistance
  • TRPA Feasibility Studies
  • Contractor Selection and Bidding Assistance
  • Construction Administration Services

Time is of the essence as well as there are date restrictions as to when we can ‘move dirt’ or not.  Want to know more?  Please reach out to us at any time.  We have been working with all the local agencies for over 30 years and have the contacts and insight to get your dream home started in 2023.

Happy New Year to all,

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060

 

Lake Tahoe Ski Resort Web Cams

Ski areas in Lake Tahoe, Ski Resort Web Cams in Tahoe

Ski areas in Lake Tahoe, Ski Resort Web Cams in Tahoe

(Photo courtesy of Mt Rose Ski Tahoe)

With all the recent snowfall throughout the High Sierra, we thought this blog could be a perfect spot to share the beauty of Mother Nature. When you are ready to hit the slopes in 2023, click on these Lake Tahoe Ski Resort Web Cams for your bird’s eye view!

And if your plans for next year include building a home by the slopes, our team at Borelli Architecture is ready to get your project moving forward. For over 30 years, we have designed slope-side mountain homes, mountain-modern masterpieces, and quaint retreats throughout the High Sierra.

To see some highlights of our client’s dream homes, see a sampling of the Residential Homes in Lake Tahoe and Carson City designed by Borelli Architecture.

If you are interested in learning more about how to build a mountain home in Lake Tahoe, or own property on a golf course and are ready to start the design process, I welcome the opportunity to share our professional advice with you.  Contact us at any time.

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060

To Remodel or Not? What’s the Best Investment?

Architect firms at Lake Tahoe

Architect firms at Lake Tahoe

For over 30 years, our architect firm in Lake Tahoe and Truckee has shared our advice about whether one should invest in remodeling their homes, or not.  Be it a full-time residence or a vacation home, the answer lies within the owner’s vision of the property’s future.  If one has plans to continue to enjoy the endless playground that comes with living and working in the Sierra, then a remodel may be the perfect next step to upgrading the home for future generations to enjoy.

If one is thinking about selling the home, we like to do a thorough walk-through to define what rooms make sense to remodel to ensure the owners get a good return on their investment.

At Borelli Architecture in Incline Village and throughout Washoe County, we have provided our clients with many options for remodeling their homes at the Lake.

To give you some ideas as to what our capabilities may be for your home, take a look at these recent remodeling projects:

733 Dee Court
Incline Village, Nevada

The scope of this interior remodel project included opening up the kitchen area to the living area by removing the existing walls between the kitchen and living area and between the kitchen and dining area and also by removing the existing freestanding fireplace. The dining area was converted to a bar area, and the result is an open great room/kitchen area with much-improved flow and a feeling of spaciousness. The completely remodeled kitchen now has plenty of space, all new appliances and finishes, and two large islands. A new fireplace was relocated to a large entertainment wall, and new built-in cabinets were added to both sides.

Crystal Shores West #52
Incline Village, Nevada

This 1,810 square-foot Incline Village lakefront condominium was completely remodeled, adding a lower floor bathroom and reconfiguring the master bathroom and guest bathroom. The kitchen was expanded and completely remodeled, and the living area received a new stone fireplace. Adding storage space was critical, and every inch was maximized to the greatest degree possible.

If you are interested in learning more about remodeling your home, and what the best options should be, I welcome the opportunity to share our professional advice with you.  Contact us at any time.

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060

Top Tips to Stage Your Home to Entice a Winter Sale

How to stage your home during the holidays

How to stage your home during the holidays

Do pumpkin decor and the scent of maple candles enhance the opportunity for a quicker home sale during the holidays? Adding some holiday ambiance wouldn’t hurt according to those who know how to stage a home for a top sale during the winter months.

Although our architectural firm in Lake Tahoe does not specialize in advice on real estate, our clients reach out to us for lots of advice as it relates to their investment. And the subject at hand is actually fairly common.

So what helps to sell a home during the typically slower season for real estate sales?  According to the pros, added ambiance.

We asked our peers in the business to provide some top tips to stage a home for a successful sale in the wintertime, and here is what they said:

1) Place a wreath on the front door. The more natural it looks, the more inviting it will be.  Garland around the door is recommended as well to frame the entrance and set a welcoming visual.  The more ‘generic’ the better.  Stay away from glitz and glamour and too much color.

2) At the entry, if you have a small table available, fresh flowers are always a plus.  A seasonal dried arrangement works, too.

3) Keep the mountain theme as one enters your home.  Think: pinecones in a basket, dried seasonal leaves and pine boughs, and candles to light the way.

4) Open all the curtains to showcase your home’s natural setting (and be sure the windows are sparkling clean).

5) If you have rugs throughout the home, the cozier, the better for this time of the year.

6) We mentioned candles before, and we’ll mention them again.  With winter weather underway, anything you can do to accentuate a warm and welcoming environment will be a bonus.  From the mantels to the hallways and bathrooms as well.

7) Set the table as if your family was arriving for a holiday dinner.  Consider a centerpiece of natural greenery that brings the outdoors in.

8) Don’t limit your decor to the dining room table.  If you have a buffet, table near the couch, or end tables that bring the living room all together, a little holiday decor would do well to set the tone of a  cozy and comfortable home sweet home.

If you are interested in learning more tips on how to stage a home for a successful sale, my wife, Kelly is the founder of Kelly Borelli Interiors and she and I welcome the opportunity to share our seasoned advice with you.  Contact us at any time.

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060

What to Plant in the Fall in the High Elevation

What trees are best for high altitude

What trees are best for high altitude

Although our architectural services in Lake Tahoe and Truckee focus primarily on designing your home, we are often asked about the trees and plants that might be ideal to complement our home designs.  And as fall is now in full swing, now is the time to decide what trees and shrubs you might want to plant before the frost arrives.

To help you out, we researched the internet and found this great blog written by the professionals at the Outdoor Design Group out of Colorado. 

As their elevation is similar to ours, here are their recommendations for high-elevation trees that would be ideal for homes in and around the High Sierra.

Deciduous Trees

  • Quaking Aspen    Populus tremuloides
  • Canada Red Cherry    Prunus virginiana ‘Canada Red’
  • Russian Hawthorne    Crataegus ambigua
  • Ginnala Maple    Acer ginnala
  • Apple and Crabbaple    Malus (several types)
  • Alder    Alnus tenuifolia
  • Tartarian Maple    Acer tartaricum
  • Birch    Betula (several types)
  • Mountain Ash    Sorbus aucuparia
  • English Oak    Quercus robur

Evergreen Trees

  • Southwestern White Pine    Pinus strobiformis
  • Ponderosa Pine    Pinus ponderosa
  • Colorado Blue Spruce    Picea pungens
  • Douglas Fir    Pseudotsuga menziesii glauca
  • White Fir    Abies concolor
  • Limber Pine    Pinus flexilis
  • Bristlecone Pine    Pinus aristata

Deciduous Shrubs

  • Burning Bush    Euonymus ‘Turkstanica Nana’
  • Peking Cotoneaster    Cotoneaster lucidus
  • American Cranberry    Viburnum trilobum
  • Currant    Ribes (several types)
  • Lilac    Syringa (several types)
  • Potentilla    Potentilla (several types)
  • Siberean Peashrub    Caragana arborescens
  • Snowball Viburnum    Viburnum opulus
  • Rock Spirea    Holodiscus dumosus
  • Sumac    Rhus (several types)
  • Willow    Salix (several types)
  • Sand Sage    Artemesia filifolia
  • Serviceberry    Amelanchier (several types)
  • Barberry    Berberis (several types)

Evergreen Shrubs

  • Juniper    Juniperus (several types)
  • Mugo Pine    Pinus mugo
  • Dwarf Alberta Spruce    Picea glauca
  • Blue Globe Spruce    Picea pungen ‘Globosa’
  • Weeping Norway Spruce    Picea abies ‘Pendula’
  • Yucca    Yucca (several types)
  • Euonymus    Euonymus (several types)

Ornamental Grasses

  • Blue Oat Grass    Helictotrichon sempervirens
  • Blue Fescue    Festuca glauca
  • Ravenna Grass    Erianthus ravennae

Perennials

  • Aster    Aster (several types)
  • Columbine     Aqueiegia
  • Blue Flax    Linum perenne
  • Snow in Summer    Cerastium tomentosum
  • Wild Strawberry    Waldsteninia ternata
  • Kinnikinnick    Actostaphylos uva-ursi
  • Painted Daisy    Tanacetum coccineum
  • Delphinium    Delphinium (several types)
  • Bleeding Heart    Dicentra spectabilis
  • Oregon Grape Holly    Mahonia repens
  • Yarrow    Achillea (several types)
  • Lupine    Lupinus (several types)
  • Sedum    Sedum (several types)
  • Black Eyed Susan    Rudbeckia fulgida
  • Windflower    Anemone canadensis
  • Serbia Iris    Iris sibirica

We hope this information helps you and your family prepare your yard for the years to come. And, if you ever need more insight into what it is like to live in the mountains or need a professional architect in Lake Tahoe to help build your mountain, lakefront, or golf resort home at Lake Tahoe, feel free to reach out at any time.

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060

What is a Site Plan and Why Do You Need One?

Lakefront Home Designs

When you live in one of the most beautiful spots on the planet, you have an innate ability to appreciate your surroundings and protect them as best as you can.  When working with our clients, we offer professional Site Plan services that enhance your property’s setting while abiding by the strict environmental regulations set by the counties around the Lake and the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency – for all the right reasons.

We employ a proactive approach regarding communications with both regulatory officials and interested stakeholders in order to build consensus surrounding a project’s design and objectives. Applying our collective talents and experience, Borelli Architecture in Lake Tahoe, Nevada, is here to design your dream home while ensuring we protect the environment that surrounds your investment.

When you work with the team at Borelli Architecture in Lake Tahoe and Carson City, Nevada, you will receive a visual presentation of your property that includes:

  • location of your home
  • location of other buildings (guest house, garden sheds)
  • terraces
  • extended features (outdoor kitchen, firepit)
  • playground

When completed, you will have a much better visual of the size and scale of your home as it relates to its orientation on your property.

Your site plan may be presented in different formats.

2D Site Plan  This is usually a simple overview that may be black and white or color coded.  It’s usually the first step in your home design which gives you an initial understanding of the layout of your home.

3D Site Plan  This option is more elaborate and includes a more defined full-color understanding of the structure of your home and its materials and colors, as well as some outdoor features (potential trees, etc.)

 3D Video Our team prefers this option and uses this technology to give our clients a much clearer understanding of your site plan, house plan, and environment in which it will be built.

For example, take a tour through our Borelli Architecture Video Models now.

If you have any questions at any time about our services to help you visualize your next home, please reach out at any time.

Jim Borelli - Borelli Architecture Lake Tahoe Carson City Truckee

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060

The Value of Skilled Trade Workers

Trade Skills

Trade Skills

Over the past two years, the Lake Tahoe and Truckee region have experienced tremendous growth.  Whether the increase in population has evolved over all the new resort developments or second homeowners choosing to make their vacation house a prominent home, the end result has impacted the construction business dramatically.

At our architecture firm in Lake Tahoe and Truckee, we are seeing lots of new trends; some are good, some not so good.

The good news is that there is more revenue streaming into our local business.  Our hardware stores, lumber yards and concrete operations are running full steam ahead to keep pace with the demand.  On the flip side, the lack of skilled trade workers is slowing down the pace, dramatically.

Thus the theme of our blog today ~ “The Value of Skilled Trade Worker”

Throughout the Reno/Lake Tahoe region, there are several colleges that offer an impressive list of classes and degrees for skilled trade. For those seeking a first-time career, or looking for a change of pace, maybe it’s time to register for some summer or fall classes now.

You can make a great living, and fulfill a huge need right here in the Tahoe basin and surrounding Reno and Carson City regions.  The list is as impressive as the money that one makes when he or she is educated and certified in any of the trade skills noted below.

  • Electricians
  • Plumbers and Pipefitters
  • Backhoe and other construction equipment operators
  • Electrical repairmen
  • Riggers
  • Machinists
  • Tool and die makers
  • Welders
  • Carpenters
  • Forklift handlers, including large capacity forklifts
  • Tile and marble setters
  • Cement masons and finishers
  • Painters
  • Sheet metal workers
  • Structural iron and steelworkers
  • Plasterers
  • Crane and tower operators
  • Dump truck operators

The closest campus (which offers virtual classes, too) is Western Nevada College.  Within their Class Schedule, you can find a wide variety of trade-oriented classes.  In addition, if you prefer to work on your own, their list of business and marketing courses can complement your skills and services as a freelance trade specialist.

If you have more of a creative mindset, be sure to check out their classes in Drafting, Architecture, and Design.  All of which are ideal if you would rather design a home than building one from the ground, up.

Our entire team at Borelli Architecture firm in Nevada encourages you to take a good look at the value of a trade skill.  You can take it anywhere and put some money away to build your own home, too!

Jim Borelli - Borelli Architecture Lake Tahoe Carson City Truckee

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060

Earth Day and Earth Week Activities at Lake Tahoe

As this month comes to a close we are encouraging our friends and family to get outside and get involved in the numerous Earth Day events throughout the Lake.

One of the region’s most focused and forthright agencies has taken the lead in creating activities and events for all ages.  The group is called Take Care Tahoe and they have an impressive list of things to do and see this week.  For more details, other than this list from their website, click into their site for ways to keep Tahoe Blue this week, and all year-round.

Mother Nature Monday …

  • Download the Tahoe Nature Activity Book for a month’s worth of nature activities
  • Join the dark sky movement and turn off outside lights at night to protect wildlife and save energy
  • Download the Citizen Science Tahoe app, to share your observations of Lake Tahoe with scientists to help researchers better understand conditions around the lake

What to Wear: Animal print or animal-themed shirt

Climate Action Tuesday

What to Wear: White for clean clouds

Clean Water Wednesday

  • Fill your reusable water bottle with Tahoe Tap and help eliminate microplastics from polluting our waterways
  • Pick up dog poop on your neighborhood walk to help protect water clarity
  • Take the Tahoe Keeper Quiz to learn how to clean, drain and dry your boat and gear to keep Aquatic Invasive Species out of Lake Tahoe
  • Complete Keep Tahoe Blue’s Preserve a Plant activity

What to Wear: Blue for clean water

Trash Free Thursday

What to Wear: Green for the Earth!

Healthy Forest Friday

What to Wear: Red to prevent wildfire

Sustainable Saturday

What to Wear: Colors of the rainbow

At Borelli Architecture in Incline Village and Lake Tahoe, we will be out and about supporting their efforts. And we encourage you to do the same.

 

Jim Borelli - Borelli Architecture Lake Tahoe Carson City Truckee

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060

What are BMP’s, and Why Are They Part of Tahoe’s Home Building Requirements?

Meeks Bay Architect BMPs Lake Tahoe

Meeks Bay Architect BMPs Lake Tahoe

For over 30 years, our architect firm has been designing lakefront and mountain homes that are situated with the Lake Tahoe Basin. And every year, our clients enquire about “BMP’s” which are defined as “Best Management Practices,” which are required as part of the home building (and selling) process.

With the building season around the corner, we thought it would be appropriate to dedicate this news article to this popular question.

BMP’s were created as part of the region’s quest to protect the Lake Tahoe Watershed that feeds into Lake Tahoe. As stated on the Tahoe Regional Planning Agencies’ (TRPA) website, here is the simple definition:

Best Management Practices, also known as BMPs, capture and infiltrate stormwater and stabilize soil to prevent erosion. This simulates pre-development conditions when precipitation would soak into the ground and be filtered by the soil, rather than running over impervious surfaces (like roofs and roads), collecting pollutants such as sediment and nutrients as it travels, and ultimately ending up in Lake Tahoe. Research proves that implementing BMPs on existing development is a critical step toward improving Lake Tahoe’s water quality and clarity.

The ideal end result is to ensure future generations continue to enjoy the pristine water within Lake Tahoe.

Whether our team at Borelli Architecture is designing homes, or commercial buildings, within the Tahoe basin, we will work with our partners to ensure the project includes the installation of BMP’s according to the TRPA requirements. Once the property has been reviewed and approved by a team member of the TRPA, the property owner will receive a BMP Certificate. At that point, it’s the owner’s responsibility to continue to maintain the land that surrounds their home or commercial establishment.

Examples of BMP’s for Your Home

There are some good resources available that have been written and published by the TRPA. Within this link, you will find an easy-to-read document that details some of the more common practices to prevent sediment and unwanted nutrients from entering our watershed.

It includes:

  • Paving dirt driveways
  • Installing drain rock under gutters and roof lines
  • Building retaining walls on steeper slopes
  • Vegetating and mulching open soil

For information, visit www.tahoebmp.org or call the BMP hotline at (775) 589-5202.

Or, feel free to contact our team. As part of our personal design services at Lake Tahoe, Borelli Architecture also offers the following assistance:

  • Custom Interior Design
  • Site Planning
  • Space Planning
  • Permit Processing Assistance
  • TRPA Feasibility Studies
  • Contractor Selection and Bidding Assistance
  • Construction Administration Services

Finally, if you are thinking about building a home within the Lake Tahoe basin, now is the time to get started. Connect with us now for your complimentary consultation.

Jim Borelli - Borelli Architecture Lake Tahoe Carson City Truckee

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060

New TRPA Forestry Efforts Give Hope to Healthier Habitats to Come

Hiking in Lake Tahoe

Hiking in Lake Tahoe

With memories of a summer filled with smokey skies and raging fires, residents throughout Lake Tahoe are fully-focused on efforts to keep summers like last year in the past and never to return.

Recently, the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPS) Governing Board approved new policies to expedite forest revitalization programs throughout the High Sierra.  In a recent press release, they announced their plans – with the most aggressive change focusing on the change in policies about ‘ground-based’ mechanical equipment (bulldozers, etc.).  As the story noted:

The decision expands the areas where ground-based mechanical equipment can be used on steep slopes. The new policy will promote forest and ecosystem resilience to disturbances such as climate change, the agency said today.

Steep terrain can be more difficult and resource-intensive for land managers to reduce hazardous forest fuels. Prior to the update, Lake Tahoe agencies could use ground-based mechanical equipment on slopes up to a 30 percent gradient, while work on steeper slopes was limited to hand crews, pile burning, and aerial logging to protect water quality from potential erosion.

TRPA Executive Director Joanne S. Marchetta said, “The Caldor Fire and the surge of megafires in the region are clear directives for us to improve our forest health policies to better protect communities and the environment from wildfire. TRPA is committed to advancing science-based practices that protect the lake and bolster our resilience to ever-growing wildfire threats, especially given the need for fuels reduction work in untreated areas narrowly missed by the Caldor Fire.”

In previous years, in fact in decards, machinery was not allowed on ANY slope over 30%.  This long-standing directive dates back to our own experience here in Incline Village when the former Ski Incline transformed its resort and doubled its terrain back in 1987.  During that year, the expansion (now known as Diamond Peak) was literally built by hand.  And for those of you who have skied the upper mountain, you can only imagine how the crews had to dig the holes for the lift towers, remove vegetation, and build structures at the top of the Peak.

The story adds another visual to the challenge at hand:

The policy change will facilitate additional forest health projects on steeper slopes. Approximately 61,000 acres in the Tahoe Basin have slopes from 30 to 50 percent, and nearly half of that area is in wildland-urban interface defense and threat zones near communities where hand crews continue to work. Additionally, post-fire assessments of the Caldor Fire show that steeper slopes tended to burn at higher severity than other areas.

“This is a game-changer for fuels reduction in the basin,” Chief Scott Lindgren of Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District said. “Hilly terrain is a significant portion of the Tahoe Basin and with the right kind of equipment, we can do quality fuel reduction work and protect the environment at the same time.”

Our team at Borelli Architecture applauds the TRPA and all who are focused on a healthier, safer, future for the entire region.  If you are interested in learning more about their year-round efforts to preserve, restore, and enhance the unique natural and human environment of the Lake Tahoe Region, contact Jeff Cowen, Public Information Officer, at (775) 589-5278 or jcowen@trpa.gov.

If you would like a personal insight about the TRPA, securing building permits in Tahoe, and other key initiatives that are key to starting to build a home in the Tahoe basin Feel free to reach out to our architect firm in Lake Tahoe, Carson City, and Reno region.

James P. Borelli
Founder/Principal
Borelli Architecture
Lake Tahoe / Truckee
jim@borelliarchitecture.com
775.831.3060