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McKernon on "Extreme Makeover" T.V. show

For the McKernon Group, the project represents an enormous series of challenges, from planning the project in just a few weeks, to managing 175 workers at a time in 12 hour shifts. The rural location in Athens will require staging areas a couple of miles away.

This is the most challenging project we have ever contemplated, but it will probably be the most rewarding as well, Executive Vice President Kevin Birchmore said. Having everything and everyone at the right spot at the exact time will be critical. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition will send the family away on a short vacation while we build their new home and we have to finish before they get back.

The McKernon Group has received significant assistance from r.k.Miles, Casella Waste Management, BuildBlock, Irving Oil, and RMG Stone. Volunteers, donations and offer of free labor have been flooding in.

This handicapped-accessible home has been designed to meet the familys special medical needs while using green-building materials and features.

We have been building green for over two decades, said Bill McGrath, McKernons director of business development. This home will include state-of-the-art windows, low-flow toilets, sinks and showers, Vermont-grown lumber, green-certified hardwood floors, BuildBlock insulated foundation block and Vermont slate. We are also taking advantage of the southern exposure to provide passive-solar heating and solar hot water. The use of insulated concrete blocks on both the foundation and walls will reduce heating cost and environmental impacts by 30 percent. But most important, it will provide the Vitales a totally new environment to raise and care for their family in a home that will be very low in maintenance costs.

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, which has won back-to- back T.V. Emmy awards as Best Reality Program (non-competitive), is entering its fifth season on ABC.

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