Groundbreaking, Food Drive, and SNICC

Posted on — By Valentina Alayon

Last Friday, Team Las Vegas 2017 held our official groundbreaking ceremony! Community supporters, team members for Team Las Vegas 2013 and UNLV faculty and staff joined the team as we kicked off construction! Special guests included, President Len Jessup, Dean Venkat, Regent Moran, Jeff Roberts AIA, and some of our top donors. Due to 60mph winds, the event was forced indoors but that did not stop the excitement.



The event began with a reception allowing attendees to interact with our team members and try out our virtual reality experience. They also previewed some of the home’s automation through interactions with our demo wall. I had the pleasure of introducing the U.S Department of Energy Solar Decathlon, the team, and speakers. UNLV’s President Len Jessup spoke about his support for the team in UNLV’s top-tier initiative. The College of Engineering’s Dean Rama Venkat, who has played a key role in providing the team resources was also invited to speak. He discussed his pride in the team’s accomplishments. The team’s architectural mentor, Jeff Roberts, AIA discussed his efforts with the 2013 and 2017 team. Adam Betemedhin, Nasko Balaktchiev, and Kalewalani Bancaco presented their experiences as part of the team and their passion for the project.

After all the presentations, the attendees took some fun photos.



Giant Check!

The Southern Nevada International Code Council presented the team with a giant $25,000 check! Strong supporters of our team, they were responsible for our booth at Educode two weeks ago.



Giving Back

During our AARP focus group, we learned about a local cause, Helping Hands of Vegas Valley. As a nonprofit, they strive to assist seniors to maintain their independence. We realized that we would use groundbreaking as a way to give back to the community by having a food and paper drive. Sunny 106.5 helped us promote the event and we are very excited to drop off all the raised goods this week.

What’s to Come?

In the next few weeks, the team will be starting to build the home’s mechanical pod, decks, and planters. Once the home’s chassis arrives on-site, we will start building the walls. Stay tuned for more construction info in the coming weeks.

Thank you to all of our supporters!