This guide provides the reasons, steps, processes and marketing tools for conservation subdivision design. It builds on other works on this topic by incorporating modern tools of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) analysis, habitat modeling, and best design practices for maximizing forest conservation and connectivity. It also takes a strong conservation approach to this design by focusing, not just on the notion of ‘open space’, which could be a lawn or a plaza, but rather on conserving habitat and restoring it where it has been impaired. Two case studies of real sites were designed in tandem with this guide’s writing, one in North Carolina and one in South Carolina. Referring to both studies, this guide takes the reader step-by-step through the design process and the challenges posed by implementing ideal design principles in the real world— with all the inherent site and policy constraints they typically encounter.
This guide was written for:
• Developers who want to design developments that cost less to build, sell faster and for better PR, or who want to leave a green legacy.
• Foresters who want to ensure that their forests are conserved as much as possible, and to help them communicate the value of forested landscapes to developers, builders and planners.
• Planners who want to show developers, county commissioners, and city councils how and why forests can be accommodated in the developing landscape, while avoiding the creation of new risks for fire, water quality or loss of open space and scenic and cultural assets.
• Land Trusts who may either: —wish to sell or share parts of their land for development, but want to create assurances that the land can still function for wildlife, recreation, water recharge and other values —become holders of open space easements within conservation developments
• Conservationists who want to ensure connectivity and habitat for wildlife or to protect rare, threatened or endangered species.
• Elected County Commissioners can use this guide to determine how growth can occur in patterns that minimize the costs of development and maximize property values.
• Community members who want to see new types Community members who want to see new types of development that use less land, while creating healthy communities of lasting value.