Construction

The city of Sebastopol, together with the Redwood Empire Chapter of the American Institute of Architects and a group of local business sponsors, is hosting The Core Project, an international design competition to generate innovative ideas for renewing the city center. The goal of The Core Project is to explore how the physical presence of Sebastopol can become a more economically thriving and aesthetically vibrant place. Entries should emphasize the following elements: traffic, commerce, and strengthening the connection between built and natural landscapes. International entrants including student and professional architects, landscape architects, developers, engineers, urban planners, transportation planners, and artists are invited to participate. Multidisciplinary and collaborative design teams are strongly encouraged. The competition is juried and cash prizes will be awarded. The registration period is through Oct. 17. The submission deadline is Oct. 24 at 5 p.m. Winners will be announced Nov. 6. Visit www.the-core-project.org for details.Education

Empire College announced that the American Association for Paralegal Education has accepted Empire's paralegal program as a chapter of the national Lambda Epsilon Chi Honor Society. Lambda Epsilon Chi is the national honor society founded by the American Association for Paralegal Education. There are approximately 133 chapters throughout the United States with over 2,000 inductees who have been honored for their outstanding academic achievements.Senior Living

Seniors, Inc. announced that it received a donation of $100,000 from Sonoma County businessman and philanthropist Henry Trione. The donation will help the nonprofit complete a new senior wing at the Finley Community Center. It will be completed by fall 2012. Phase three of construction is $2.2 million. Seniors Inc. has been raising funds for the project since 2003. Total cost of the project is about $7 million.Wine

Benovia Winery recently installed solar panels that will produce most of the electricity the winery needs, according to Mike Sullivan, co-owner, general manager and winemaker. Benovia, a Russian River Valley vintner of pinot noir, chardonnay and zinfandel wines, chose Real Goods Solar to install 171 photovoltaic modules on the roof of its winery, Mr. Sullivan said. The system will produce more than 60,000 kilowatt hours of electricity annually, reducing the winery's PG&E bill by at least 92 percent.The installation will reduce its CO2 emissions by some 1180 tons over 25 years -- the environmental equivalent of more than 20 acres of planted trees. Also factoring into Benovia's decision were financial incentives available from the federal government and state of California, Mr. Sullivan said, noting Benovia's new investment in renewable energy will pay for itself in a little more than nine years.