Saturday, May 10, 2008

Misconceptions about Briar Chapel

The other day, I was talking with somone who wasn't all that thrilled about Briar Chapel. As I listened, it quickly became apparent that they had several misconceptions about the development, which were a result of some of the rumors that were floating around Chatham County during the planning stages.

Here are some facts I shared with them about Briar Chapel, which helped to clear up some of the confusion:
  • developers have preserved more than 50% (900 acres), including steep slopes, stream beds, significant tree stands, and several historic structures found on-site
  • it is the first (and largest) community in the Triangle to require homebuilders to comply with the rigorous new home construction requirements and third-party testing of the N.C. Green Building Initiative, creating high performance, healthier homes with measurable cost savings for residents and contributing to an improved quality of life
  • contrary to earlier rumors, Briar Chapel will NOT include a golf course
  • 30 percent of the homes face south to increase efficiencies and solar capabilities
  • the clubhouse will be LEED-certified
  • the developers convinced Thompson Contracting, who is handling site development, to use biodiesel in some of its earth-moving equipment
  • 64 units will be made available for affordable housing
  • Newland Communities has already donated over $1 million to our local Habitat for Humanity
  • all stone used in Briar Chapel is native to the site, including its beautiful masonry walls, roadbeds and trails (but excluding the gravel in the parking lot at the Info Center)
  • meandering, bifurcated roadways were designed to maximize the tree canopy for the native birds
  • 24 miles of trails connect the entire community
  • a $10 million sewage treatment plan was constructed allowing for spray irrigation and the use of reclaimed gray-water irrigation for all open space
  • the developers have created and funded a foundation that will support local artists and various green initiatives (more on this later)

I could go on, but I think you get the point. Although no housing development is perfect, I hope you'll agree that Newland Communities is striving to be responsible and make a positive difference in the world by creating enduring, healthier communities.