POLL: #1 Newport: RI’s Best Communities 2013

Newport Harbor

Surrounded by a sprawling waterfront, Newport was fittingly titled the “Birthplace of the Navy.” Since its establishment as a city, this highly visited community has enjoyed a history of progress and success. In fact, Newport has more standing buildings built before 1830 than any other American community. It offers cruises, excursion boats, city tours, golf, and fishing among other things for visitors making it one of the most desired tourist destinations in the country.

http://www.golocalprov.com/news/1-newport-ris-best-communities-2013/

Newport by the numbers

Established: 1639
Population: 24,672
Median household income: $58,080
Median housing price: $352,500

2013 Best Communities rankings

Overall ranking: 1
Affordability ranking: 38
Education ranking: 35
Economic Condition ranking: 17
Safety ranking: 35
Arts & Culture ranking: 1

Famous residents

Benedict Arnold, (governor) of Rhode Island
William Coddington, governor of Rhode Island
John Clarke, Baptist minister and drafter of the Royal Charter
Nicholas Easton, governor of Rhode Island
George Berkeley, philosopher
Louis Alexandre Berthier, French Army officer, later Marshal of France and Napoleon’s chief of staff
William Ellery, signer of the Declaration of Independence
Robert Feke, portrait painter
Peter Harrison, architect
Samuel Hopkins (clergyman), Congregational minister, Calvinist theologian and pioneer leader for abolition of the slave trade
Aaron Lopez, prominent merchant
Louis-Marie, vicomte de Noailles, French army officer
Jean-Baptiste Donatien de Vimeur, comte de Rochambeau, French general
Charles Theodore Pachelbel, first organist of Newport’s Trinity Church and son of Johann Pachelbel
William Selby, organist (Trinity Church) and composer
John Smybert, artist
Ezra Stiles, minister, diarist, and President of Yale
Gilbert Stuart, portrait painter
Isaac Touro, hazzan at Synagogue
Judah Touro, prominent merchant and philanthropist
Vice-Admiral Sir Jahleel Brenton, Royal Navy
William Ellery Channing, one of the foremost Unitarian preachers of the 19th century
George Bancroft, historian, Secretary of the Navy, diplomat, and summer resident
August Belmont, financier
Ambrose Burnside, Army officer stationed at Fort Adams, later a Civil War general, governor, and senator
Julia Ward Howe, author and summer resident
Henry James, author
William James, Harvard professor
John Kensett, artist
Clement C. Moore, summer resident and author of ‘Twas the Night before Christmas
Levi P. Morton, summer resident and donor of Morton Park, later Vice President of the United States
Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry, hero of the War of 1812
William Trost Richards, artist
Milton H. Sanford, textile magnate and thoroughbred racehorse owner
Richard Upjohn, architect
Louis Agaziz, scientist and adventurer
Caroline Webster Schermerhorn Astor, socialite
Alva Belmont, socialite and leader of women’s rights movement
Charles D. Barney, socialite, banker, founder of Smith Barney Brokerage
Oliver Hazard Perry Belmont, socialite, builder of Belcourt Castle
James Gordon Bennett, Jr. newspaper publisher and yachtsman
Ogden Codman, designer
Richard Morris Hunt, architect
William Morris Hunt, artist
John LaFarge, artist
Pierre Lorillard, tobacco manufacturer
Rear Admiral Stephen B. Luce, founder, Naval War College
Captain Alfred Thayer Mahan, naval historian and strategist
Ward McAllister, flamboyant raconteur of high society, coined the term ‘the 400’ for the New York social elite
Charles McKim, architect
H.H. Ricardson, architect
Edith B. Price, writer and illustrator
Horace Trumbauer, architect
Alva Vanderbilt Wife of William K. Vanderbilt, early feminist and active in the women’s suffrage movement
Consuelo Vanderbilt, daughter of W.K. and Alva Vanderbilt; Duchess of Marlborough
Cornelius Vanderbilt II heir to Vanderbilt fortune, Chairman of New York Central Railroad
William Kissam Vanderbilt heir to Vanderbilt fortune, noted yachtsman
Edith Wharton, author
Stanford White, architect
Edward Malbone, artist and miniaturist
Caleb Gardner, captain and counsul of the French Empire
Thomas Harper Ince, actor
Ida Lewis, lighthouse keeper credited with saving 18 lives in Newport Harbor throughout the nineteenth century; she received national attention and numerous honors. A United States Coast Guard buoy tender bears her name
Matthew C. Perry, Commodore of the U.S. Navy who forced the opening of Japan to the West with the Convention of Kanagawa in 1854, under the threat of military force
Harry Anderson, actor and comedian
Nadia Bjorlin, soap opera actress (Days of our Lives)
Frank Corridon, who pitched for the Chicago Cubs, Philadelphia Phillies, and St. Louis Cardinals and is known for inventing the now illegal pitch, the spitball
Tanya Donelly, musician, vocalist for Rhode Island-based bands Belly and Throwing Muses, as well as guitarist for the band The Breeders
Leon Wilkeson, bass guitarist
Charlie Fern, White House speechwriter, journalist.
Van Johnson, actor, known best for “all-American” roles in MGM films during World War II.
Mena Suvari, actress, known best for her role as the vampish cheerleader with whom Kevin Spacey’s character is obsessed in the 1999 film American Beauty.
Laura Jane Barney socialite, philanthropist, Smith Barney Brokerage heiress Champ Soleil Mansion on Belleveue Ave
Admiral Jeremy Michael Boorda, 25th Chief of Naval Operations
John Nicholas Brown, socialite, yachtsman and philanthropist
The Cowsills, a popular 1960s pop/flower power band that had a #2 hit with The Rain, The Park, And Other Things in 1967
Doris Duke, tobacco heiress and philanthropist
President Dwight D. Eisenhower, located his summer White House at Newport
Fleet Admiral William F. Halsey, Jr.
Paul L. Gaines, first African-American to be elected mayor of a New England city
Kristin Hersh, musician, vocalist for Rhode Island-based band Throwing Muses, 50 Foot Wave and solo artist.
Fleet Admiral Ernest King, Chief of Naval Operations, 1941–1945
MacGillivray Milne, 27th Governor of American Samoa, 1936–1938
Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz, Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet, 1942–1945; Chief of Naval Operations
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, summer resident and First Lady
Claiborne Pell, socialite and U.S. Senator
Admiral William Sims, commander of U.S. Naval Forces in Europe 1917–1919
Admiral Raymond Spruance, the victor of Midway and later President, Naval War College
Harold Vanderbilt, yachtsman and bridge player (inventor of contract bridge)
Paul Gordon – keyboardist and guitarist with Goo Goo Dolls, New Radicals, Lisa Marie Presley and currently The B-52’s
Joanna Going, Actress
Richard Hatch, first winner of the realty television show Survivor
Richard Saul Wurman, architect, graphic designer and founder of the TED Conferences
Sheldon Whitehouse, U.S. Senator

Workshop on the Proposed 240″ Pier at Fort Adams

Newport Waterfront Commission – RIDEM  

Fort Adams Pier
Fort Adams Pier

Information Workshop on the
Proposed Pier at Fort Adams

Wednesday, January 30, 2013 at 6:30 PM
Newport City Hall – Council Chamber

The Waterfront Commission and the Newport Maritime Alliance will facilitate this Newport community informational workshop.

The purpose of the workshop is to have RIDEM present its proposal for a 240’ pier at Fort Adams and it benefits to the State andNewport. The presentation will be followed by discussion and questions.

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Survey Responses Question #3 Wind Turbine Ordinance

Alliance for a Livable Newport December 2012  Survey Results
Survey Name: 3 Questions – 3 Minutes
Dec 26, 2012 8:20:14 PM

 PLEASE COMMENT BELOW

3.  Newport City Council passed a “Wind Turbine Ordinance” at their last meeting in 2012. The ordinance is “conservative” and considers most of Newport unsuitable for Wind Turbines.

If your property qualified for a small residential turbine, would you want one? How about if a turbine was on your neighbors property? 

Should small residential turbines be BANNED from Newport’s Historic District properties?   – Responses

Answer
1 Yes,  OK,  No
2 I don’t know enough to have a valid opinion. My gut reaction is to say banning something that can be such a help to the residents of Newport is silly.
3 NO!
4 I actually think wind turbines are beautiful, but also feel that the landscape and views of our coast and community are more beautiful, that we should make every effort to preserve this view. Once it’s lost, it’s lost for good. Small turbines, like those pictured above would be OK, but anything mounted on a pole above the landscape would not work!
5 No
6 yes – wind turbines should be banned from historic districts.
7 No turbines in close quarters.  Unsuitable when houses are close to eachother.  Everything else is banned in historic districts, so why would this be different?
8 For a city located on the coast and most at risk for the effects of global warming, you would think we might have some forward thinking representatives. I am very interested in utilizing wind turbines at my home in a historic district. What use is an ordinance that bans the use of turbines on a large percentage of the city’s residential structures.
9 Undecided
10 This is a huge question. We certainly don’t mind satellite-TV antennas all over the houses. I don’t think many of us know what a wind turbine looks like apart from the large ones. I certainly would like one whipping around in my neighbor’s yard. Certainly not if it’s only for the purpose of allowing the occupants to continue to use excesses of elec
11 yes
12 yes, wouldn’t mind if they were there… supports RI’s ecological conservative mindset
13 As with any project in Historic Districts it must be  taken on a case-by-case basis. Solar panels where they are nearly invisible or can be incorporated into landscaping have been allowed in HD’s and the same could be true of wind turbines. The major difference, of course, is the moving parts. Much like HVAC units the decibels must be considered.
14 Yes, they should be banned. They look terrible. We live in the Historic District and can’t have them and we can’t have the newer windows so pay lots for heating that other people don’t have to pay. We should all have the same options.
15 Residents should me able to have small quiet winde machines that do not impact neighbors quality of life anywhere in the city
16 Small residential turbines should be allowed in all areas of the city, with noise limitations. No, I would not build one.
17 yes
18 Absolutely!  One of Newport’s main attribute is it’s historic architecture.  Wind turbines don’t belong here.
19 NO!They should’nt be banned.As long as they are suitable for that property size.Again this city has to many uptight citizens complaining about everything!The home owner is doing something good for himself and the enviroment.Take some strain of the grid.The Historic District is a joke to.250 year old rundown pieces of crap.Might makeit look better
20 Wind turbines are the “green” way to go. Bring them on!!!
21 At present yes,  Does anyone remember when most homes had TV antennas on their roof.  Will technology become more attractive.  I believe so.
22 I am in favor of allowing SMALL Residential wind turbines. Noise needs to be kept to a minimum for any turbines in residential districts. Not sure how I feel about turbines in the Historic Districts. BUT I am in favor of allowing SOLAR Panels in historic districts.
23 Of course they should be banned in the Historic District. I would not be happy if a neighbor installed a turbine. My house is just a dozen feet from my neighbor’s house.
24 Yes.  The city is too small to have such wind turbines in the middle of a historic district.  There are better places for wind turbines that do not ruin the aesthetics or have noise impacts on reidences.
25 Yes
26 I would welcome small turbines and more solar panels.
27 Of course I’d want one, and on my 211-yeaqr old house as well; I believe it would still look appealing with a propellar on the roof. More importantly, I want cleaner air for my grandchildren, which the continued use of fossil fuels will make impossible.
28 No; there is a very limited market for small capacity turbines.  My lot, at 10K SF and outside the district qualifies but with large trees and the height limit it makes no economic sense, and would have a big impact on neighbors.  The criteria should be based on land area (10K SF is too small) not historic district, these are temporary structures
29 I would support wind turbines as shown in your picturel in the historic district if not viewed from the street or impacting the actual historic structures.  Structures less than 100 years old should be permited to have them, even if the house is in a HD.
30 I have no problems with wind turbines. They’re less unsightly than satellite dishes, and less noisy than generators. I don’t think the commission ever gave the issue serious consideration, and they were set up with the sole intention of banning them from the get go.
31 More flexibility is needed in determining appropriateness for differing historic districts. Nothing in the historic zoning ordinance rules out turbines out of hand. An aesthetic leap has been made between “historic” and “appropriate.” The south end has the largest lots and the best wind, and the strongest NIMBY pressure, which should’t be a factor.
32 Yes we would want one and we would have no problem with our neighbors having one. I don’t see any reason to prevent people in historic districts from haing them either. This is not a novelty or aesthetic device. The future of the country and the planet depend on the rapid implementation of alternative energy sources.
33 I would wnat one on my house and I don’t mind if my neighbor has one.  The HD should be a case by case basis.
34 no. People have satelite dishes “for pleasure”.  These turbines are  essential.
35 Yes.
36 YES
37 I might want one for my own property but only if it were very effective and visually unobtrusive. I do NOT think turbines should be allowed in the historic districts.
38 yes
39 Don’t live in Newport.
40 Ban unless installation is out of sight.  Historic properties are key to the economy of Newport (tourist) and appearance must be preserved.
41 If I had a property on ocean drive I’d want to install a residential turbine. The original recommendation by the Planning Board was to allow such turbines in the Historic District for lots of min 4 acres. Within such reasonable limits property owners should be free to install turbines to save money and become more independent if that’s their choice
42 Yes, turbines should be banned from the NHD but I would permit small residential turbines in other areas.
43 NO
44 yes they should be banned
45 no
46 Is or should ‘turbines’ Be Banned??? I can’t even imagine why?
47 If small turbines are banned so should direct TV dishes.  If it is attached to the roof and not up on a huge pole I’m not sure what the problem is. People have had huge antennas on their houses for years and no one cared.
48 All depends on the size and style. Small turbines  should be allowed!  Noise is an issue, but the vertical ones are fairly quiet, I have heard.
49 NO, Newport County is perfect for wind turbines.  The council got this terribly wrong.
50 no
51 yes
52 ss
53 Yes banned from historic districts All depends on noise otherwise.
54 yes
55 No turbine on our property OK for my neighbor to install a small turbine Yes, should be banned from Historic District
56 Yes — not in keeping with our history
57 Yes.  There are other energy saving steps that can be taken that preserve the historic elements – such as storm windows.  The historic district represents one of the most (if not the most) collection of antique homes in the country.  I think Newport can preserve the historic districts and optimize all conservation measures possible.
58 yes to ban on turbines throughout city
59 It would depend on the size of the turbine and the noise it generated and if there were additional costs to using more traditional sources of energy for the rest of us.
60 Absolutely!
61 My neighbor DOES have small turbines on his roof- feel free to come hear them on any windy night. They are unsightly and noisy and for what? Our electric bills are  modest- so clearly he is doing this to get rebates. Does the city tax that income?  I don’;t think so. Solar panels could do the same thing without the noise.
62 I think small wind turbines are not only desirable but very much in the tradition of Newport. For goodness sake, we are the sailing capital of the northeast because we have wind!! Yes, turbines should not disturb neighbors with noise, vibration or flicker but they are integral to energy independence. I for one as a Newport resident want one.
63 no you should be able to make your own house/buisness sustainable limits on size of course
64 Tricky, because these turbines create noise and visual pollution.
65 Rather than banning ALL wind turbines from historic districts we can evaluate evolving technology which trends to smaller and quieter and could eventually be appropriate.  Banning seems both excessive and shortsighted and as building permits are required for instillation there is a monitoring  mechanism already in place.
66 Yes
67 i do not think scattered turbines, of whatever size and in whatever location are appropriate.  swathes/drifts of turbines, on land and water should be constructed, providing power for the entire island. scattered shot pollutes the eye and looks hit or miss.  an organized plan with sufficient power and visual cohesion would be far better.
68 I would not personally want one for my property and would be concerned of noise levels from neighbors’ turbines (we have open windows in the summer, no AC)
69 Small wind turbines don’t crank out that much electricity and they can be noisy. Residential wind turbines are a noise factor. And they are not very attractive. How about an incentive for solar panels? Satellite dishes and solar panels don’t make noise – meanwhile Cox and National Grid are getting higher prices with poorer service.
70 I don’t think they should be in the historic district
71 Nothing I read distinguished between types of turbines. If “small residential turbine” means a rooftop turbine where a large ground-planted turbine is unsuitable, then I beleive the city counncil should allow them. I would welcome an appropriate turbine on my neighbors’ properties. Not sure about historic districts. Need to hear more info and think
72 no   solar panels should be allowed also.
73 Yes, banned from historic properties only. If they are silent, and can be placed at least 25 ft. High, they should be allowed in residential neighborhoods. This will also increase the supply of squab for grilling in the summer months.
74 I live in a Historic District condo (Bellevue Sq). I would not mind having solar panels or small (vibration-free)wind turbines on our own or neighboring roofs. Ditto for composting, permeable drives and drain ways, etc. Preservation has to modify to fit the times. Good designers and landscapers can help blend such with traditional character.
75 Small turbines come in many form factors; we’ve been poorly educated by the city on the numerous alternatives. Hence their action was drastic, premature, and likely targeted the one home in Fifth Ward.
76 Yes
77 I don’t want a wind turbine on my property or my neighbor’s and would prefer that wind turbines be banned from the historic districts.
78 Yes!  I would not want to look at them, although if they could be concealed I might not object. Then again, I might get used to them after a while.
79 ~If my property qualified, I would consider a turbine.  ~I would not object to a turbine on neighboring property.  ~I would allow turbines in any neighborhood/district that allows structures such as satellite dishes, and I would evaluate carefully their benefits on school properties as evidenced in adjacent communities.
80 No!  This is the stupidest, most nearsighted, reactionary and obstructionist idea ever.  We need to be creative about producing clean power locally, and blanket bans are the opposite of creative.  What we need are some simple guidelines such as safe fall zones, protection of specific vistas, etc that allow homeowners to be creative within them.
81 I do NOT think there should be a ban on small residential turbines.  There are potentially more exceptions to the rule than protections to places where turbines are not acceptable.  This ordinance is an easy way out.  These types of renewable energy decisions should be on a case by case basis, not an all or none philosophy.
82 Need more information as to actually how much power would be generated by small turbines and how much the savings to homeowners would be. Depending on size, they could be fine in the historic district
83 Absolutely banned from the Historic District! I would not put one on my house and would not want one on my neighbor’s.  I support preserving the environment, energey conservation,etc., but the thought of having these turbines on rooftops in  Newport is disturbing.
84 If window a/c units are allowed in the Historic District, then small turbines should be.  My lot is too small, but larger lot owners should be allowed to have them.  We need to encourage wind power, but phasing it in while we study their impacts They should be placed so as not to intrude (noise, vibration, flicker) on neighboring properties.
85 No wind mills in town except for beanies worn by proponents of wind power. Why destroy all the efforts by  home owners to follow a theme of colonial Newport and goof it all up with a circus atmosphere?
86 Turbines ought to be banned from the historic district, but I am much in favor of Turbine development outside of this area.
87 Big turbines, serving the public, out on The Drive, away from residences, would be great. Since Newport should be striving for World Heritage designation, I feel that turbines don’t belong in the core Historic city.
88 Yes I would use one. And no wind turbines should not be banned anywhere period. We need to find alternative power sources.
89 Go Geo thermal We did
90 Yes.

Survey Results – December 2012 “3 Questions, 3 Minutes”

Survey Summary can be seen online:

http://survey.constantcontact.com/survey/a07e6s0r1wshana1pss/results

The individual survey responses will be shown on separate pages to encourage feedback and comments.

Please COMMENT below, or share on Facebook and Twitter!

December_Survey_Results_Summary

3 Questions, 3 Minutes, Tell us what you think!

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Greetings!

You have a voice in the community!  We want to hear from you about the important issues and concerns affecting our quality of life in Newport. Beginning this month, and each month in 2013, we will ask for your input and feedback with a simple survey of issues selected by the Board of Directors of The Alliance for a Livable Newport. We will also share the results of the survey and publish them online.  Do you have additional questions, concerns or suggestions? Please let us know!

Take this survey

Thank you for participating in this month’s survey! We really appreciate your feedback. Please be sure and visit our Facebook page where you can also post your comments!  We will be announcing exciting new Public Forums for 2013 soon, so stay connected, engaged and informed with The Alliance for A Livable Newport on our website: http://newportalliance.org/.
*Please share this survey with your neighbors! We’d like to hear from as many Newport residents as possible and are actively seeking greater participation and new members!
Sincerely,

Ronald Becker, Treasurer

Alliance for a Livable Newport
info@newportalliance.org/

 

 

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Safety is Newport’s Number One Priorty, Mayor Says

The Mayor and City Manager held a press conference on Monday to address safety in Newport.

Harry Winthrop, Mayor and Jane Howington, City Manager

In light of recent assault reports, including a 42-year-old woman attacked on Ruggles Avenueand a group of boys victim of attempted robbery,Newport Mayor Harry Winthrop and City Manager Jane Howington called a second press conference to address the public’s perception of safety in Newport.

The meeting was also attended by Newport City Council members.

“The number one priority in Newport is public safety. We will deploy whatever resources necessary,” Winthrop said.

As for added safety measures due to assault reports and rumors, Howington said that there are officers in the police department that can be moved around to different areas that could be hot spots for random assaults.

“If there is a hot spot and we have leads, we’ll put plain clothes officers out there,” she said.

Howington said the city will also hire a public information consultant using an emergency purchase order to further communication between the city and the community.

Councilor Kathryn Leonard said she would like to see the city be proactive rather than reactionary. “I would like to see unmarked cars. . .and beat police men. I don’t want to wait for another assault.”

Howington added that the city is taking the recent assaults in Newport so seriously because of the growing perception that the community is unsafe. That perception has been perpetuated by social media and blogs, she said.

The community would also benefit from resurrecting the neighborhood watch mentality. “If you see something, say something,” she said.

As for added police efforts, Councilor Justin McLaughlin said the community should trust that the police department are being transparent, up to some point.

“The police department can’t reveal everything,” he said.

The Newport Police Department is currently analyzing crime data to determine what, if any, if any areas in town have patterns of random assaults.

Related Topics: AssaultsNewport Safety, and newport city council

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Steve Heath seeking advisers for “Newport FabLab” at East Bay Met School

(October 21, 2012) A team of educators, industry representatives, after school providers, and public officials are developing a digital fabrication studio (FabLab) in the Florence Gray Center in the north end of Newport. (1 York St Newport, RI 02840 )

Leading this initiative is Steve Heath, Community Learning Specialist, East Bay Met School. Steve has 15 years of program development in urban public, and private schools  and can be reached at (401) 439-0160, sheath@metmail.org, or 1 York Street, Newport, RI 02840

The Newport FabLab promises to serve as a catalyst for educational collaboration and industry participation by addressing disenfranchised and high achieving students of all ages.

Steve says that he is “committed to the ‘FabLab’ project because it addresses educational needs, business aspirations, community development opportunities and innovative ideas.”

What is a FabLab?  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fab_lab    

FabLab
Photo of the Amsterdam FabLab at the Waag Society

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A FabLab (fabrication laboratory) is a small-scale workshop offering (personal) digital fabrication.

A FabLab is generally equipped with an array of flexible computer controlled tools that cover several different length scales and various materials, with the aim to make “almost anything”.[3] This includes technology-enabled products generally perceived as limited to mass production.

While FabLabs have yet to compete with mass production and its associated economies of scale in fabricating widely distributed products, they have already shown the potential to empower individuals to create smart devices for themselves. These devices can be tailored to local or personal needs in ways that are not practical or economical using mass production

Popular FabLab equipment and projects:

Flexible manufacturing equipment within a FabLab can include:

The FabLab would serve youth, artists and businesses, CCRI students, adults interested in developing marketable skills, and Newport County technology companies.

The FabLab can provide Newport County residents with alternative pathways to Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM) careers through mentoring and personalized education, as it links Newport County’s high-tech professionals from Raytheon, over 40 technology-oriented companies, and the Naval Undersea Weapons Center (NUWC) with area students.

Once fully developed, equipped, and staffed, the Newport County FabLab would provide:

· Classes and workshops for students and adults

· Daily after-school programs for middle and high school students

· Facilities to rent for local companies and entrepreneurs

· Classes in collaboration with CCRI, including a specific curriculum designed to enable high school students to get an early start on an Associate’s Degree in Micro Manufacturing or other high-tech subjects.

Our team includes:

We are presently seeking advisors to lend their expertise as we plan for a technologically savvy Newport County.

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