This section categorizes our design choices at Grow, and how we’re using design to build a functional and beautiful built environment.

Grow Community Wins Built Green Project of the Year

This past Thursday (9/14), Grow Community received the Built Green Project of the Year at the annual Built Green Conference.

It was unexpected, and we are deeply honored to be given such an award considering the unbelievable work our peers have accomplished in 2017.

The Grow Team wishes to thank our investors, construction team, Built Green, our design teams, and the other builders that are pushing the envelope toward sustainability, and especially our Grow Community residents. Everyone has believed in possibility and found a way to make Grow a reality.

 

Sage advice — come to the Park and see the Lilacs. A Construction & Sales Update – August 2017

A warm summer has brought the Park neighborhood to life, resplendent with its first round of trees, grasses, pea patches and plantings.

Centerpiece is the new Community Center, where the planter beds have already been filled by enthusiastic neighbors looking forward to future harvests. The center’s solar canopy is now in place, with system installation set for October once the roofing is done. Inside the center final painting is underway, and the building should be completed by mid-September. Watch for upcoming events here as we start to bring the community together around the use of this great new facility.

Nearby the Sage building is wrapping up nicely with some new residents already moved in, and more new neighbors arriving over the next several months. New neighbors in the Lilac townhomes will follow.

Toward the south end of the project, grading and other construction activity will begin in September. We’ll be focusing on path work and prep for Grow’s final buildings, the Trillium and Meadow Homes. There’s no timetable yet for building construction, but we should have an update in the coming weeks.

The Grove neighborhood has settled in, with just four 2-bedroom homes still available.

The Lilac townhomes now have six homes ready and waiting — three 3-bedrooms (the last 3-bedroom homes left in all of Grow Community) and three 2-bedroom units as well.

All homes in the Sage condominiums will be completed by September, meaning more purchase opportunities are about to come online. Nine 2-bedroom units are available, including third-floor with spectacular views. This is your last chance to live in a single-level home in Grow Community! Contact the sales office today for a personal tour.

Nearing Full Flower. A Construction Update – July 2017

Summer is finally upon us, and it’s exciting to see our landscaping really taking off with the turn of another season. Grow Community is lush and green!

Our built environment too is nearing full flower. While we’ve wrapped up the Grove (with just a few units remaining), we are pushing toward completion of the Sage building in the new Park neighborhood.

The Sage will see its first residents moving in the latter half of July, with building completion in August. The exterior work is nearly done and all interior work is well into the last details. Landscaping comes right on the heels of exterior work and we hope to see all sides of The Park getting buttoned up.

The Lilac Townhomes have residents now moving in, and we are excited to see the community filling up in our final phase.

Our new neighborhood hub, the Community Center, is also taking shape with roofing nearly complete, siding soon, and interior work underway over the next week. Even the new planter beds are in place and nearly ready to let people get their plantings going! You’ll see the final site/landscaping work and solar canopy over the next several weeks.

Celebrate with us as we host a “soft opening” for the Community Center, with all-day events on Thursday, July 20. We’ll host a lunchtime BBQ for the construction team, have the building open for those who wish to swing by, and host an evening event celebrating the history of the Grow site and how it will be honored within the center. We truly look forward to sharing our history with the Bainbridge Community.

Sharing our History + Celebrating our New Community Center

Grow celebrates the progress on our new Community Center with daylong events on Thursday, July 20.

We will be hosting lunch for the construction team, followed by an evening potluck and sharing of the Grow Community site history through many generations. Special guests will share family and neighborhood stories, including a visiting descendent of the pioneer Grow family.  This event will focus on history – no tours of the center or its features will take place, but see our schedule of upcoming events for future opportunities.

11.30am-1pm – Construction Worker Lunch
1pm-5pm – Feel free to walk by and see progress
6pm to 8pm – History Sharing and Potluck

LOCATION: 395 Ambrose Street, in the Park at Grow Community

 


UPCOMING EVENTS:

August (DATE TBD) – Neighborhood meeting on Community Center operations: This discussion will focus on answering questions about the center, understanding its availability, use and operating budget, and hopefully celebrating the certificate of occupancy!

September 14th – Community meeting on Emergency Preparedness. Grow residents are invited to a potluck dinner and discussion of community emergency preparedness. Guest speaker will be Scott James, author of “Prepared Neighborhoods” and Bainbridge Island resident

October (DATE TBD) – Community Harvest & Solar for the Community Center Celebration. Join us for a celebration of the harvest season, pumpkin carving, cider pressing, and official commissioning of the Community Center’s rooftop solar array!

May 2017 Construction & Sales Update

That’s a wrap! With the singular “tall-skinny” unit in the Tsuga now complete, Grow Community transitions away from the Grove neighborhood and into our final phase. But if you’ve not seen that unit – a unique three-story layout, with a spacious outdoor deck on every level, a loft area for a home theater or den, and a private elevator to every level  –  stop in and see what make it so distinct.

Meanwhile, at the Park: The Lilac townhomes have earned occupancy certificates from the City of Bainbridge, with touch up work just wrapping up.  Our first owners will be in by the end of this month –   more amazing people joining Grow, whose homes all front the Park’s signature greenway.

The Sage condominium homes are on pace for completion from early July to early August. Interior work is underway, while exterior siding will be wrapped up by early June.

The Community Center will be taking shape through June with completion of the roof, windows, exterior siding and interior fixtures. We hope to host an event in the building in mid-June as a “soft opening” of the space, and transition control of the building to the homeowner association later this summer.

Landscaping and grounds items are also taking shape in the Park, and a little sun goes a long way. Watch the carpet of green roll its way south toward the Shepard Way end of the project, with construction of our final buildings there soon to follow.

With all these great units coming online, we’re still missing one thing: You. Six beautiful condos are now move-in ready in the Tsuga and Salal, and five townhomes including two spacious 3-bedroom units.

Not ready to buy? Experience Grow Community living in a 2- or 3-bedroom rental unit, now open in the Juniper.
Contact our sales office and see these outstanding units today, and join our community for healthy, happy living.

Urban Land group visits Grow

The prestigious Urban Land Institute held its Spring Conference in Seattle in early May, and Grow Community was both hot topic and host.

Grow welcomed thought-leaders in spheres ranging from development to investment, planning and design, as they came to Bainbridge Island for site visits throughout the conference.

Grow has been part of the ULI conversation since the project began, our community being a case study for creating healthy places, promoting intergenerational living, and integrating sustainability at scale.

Discussion threads running through the week included:

Creating a legacy. Pooran Desai, founder of the organizations BioRegional, which established the One Planet Living Principles, described effort at Grow as a legacy – both for the region, and in changing the conversation around the way we develop future communities. While the project has had many twists and turns, its consistency around creating a place for all ages to be comfortable and live in a more sustainable way is a profound achievement.

Intergenerational living. Visitors from the ULI appreciated Grow’s commitment to developing a community with many varied home types, to give people at every stage of life a comfortable place to live. It marks a change from development patterns often seen in the United States, where we tend to segregate generations, versus other communities around the world that embrace keeping mixed generations together.

Sustainability. Many of the ULI visitors came from places where a push for sustainability is just beginning, compared to the Seattle region where it is becoming the norm. Visitors were impressed by the range of areas where Grow challenged the norm: energy, materials, solar, and open space. Built Green standards allowed us to use a local certification program and consider our efforts from a neighborhood level, integrating our sustainability goals through One Planet Living. Grow gave visitors a model they can follow and incorporate into their own communities.

The Grow Community development team and investors thank residents for continuing to allow for guests like ULI to visit. These visits and conversations plant the seeds for other communities to come. They also provide the inspiration for others to take on the challenges of sustainable growth and living – allowing others to take what we have learned here, and spread the best of what we have for our One Planet.

Built Green gives Grow 5 Stars

Weather-tight outside, snug and warm within. Built Green gives Grow Community phase 2, the Grove, a prestigious 5 Star rating in its new online feature.

Built Green cites Grow homes’ excellent standards for energy efficiency, indoor air quality, and top-quality materials in home that “cultivate a healthy, happy, and sustainable community for all ages.”

Built Green helps homebuyers find quality, affordable homes that offer opportunities to protect the health of their families and the Northwest environment. Built Green homes are designed to provide homeowners with comfortable, durable, environmentally friendly homes that are cost-effective to own and operate.

These resource-efficient homes are crafted to exceed building codes and provide homeowners with years of healthy, quality living, while protecting our families and the precious Northwest environment.

Read the Built Green feature on Grow Community here.

screen-shot-2016-11-15-at-8-38-29-am-1024x717

Three flavors of multifamily solar at Grow Community

Condos, apartments, townhomes – three flavors of multifamily construction, each with its own challenges for reaping the power, and financial benefits, of solar investment.

Asani development company is tackling all three at once at Grow Community.

On buildings dubbed the Salal, the Juniper and the Elan, now complete in the project’s expansive second phase, solar arrays will benefit both homebuyers and renters alike.

One roof apiece, with many beneficiaries beneath.

“Our investors said, ‘let’s go for it,'” said Greg Lotakis, Asani president and Grow Community project manager. “Without their desire to be the largest solar community in Washington, and wanting to plant the solar flag in the ground, we wouldn’t be doing this. Without their support, it wouldn’t be possible.”
 grow-modules1

The Salal condominiums, with 12 units spread over three stories, is effectively a “community solar” project on a rooftop. Solar was included in the purchase price – no option – and incentives from the State of Washington will be apportioned equally among condominium owners, with each owning a one-twelfth interest in the array.

Asani worked with state officials and the local utility provider to craft a program that satisfies the complicated provisions of Washington law.

The opening was a provision allowing common use of single roof for solar in multifamily buildings. Asani banked on prospective buyers seeing shared solar as a good investment as they bought their condo units, one that promised annual paybacks while lowering operational costs of their building through solar harvest.

Solar was designed into the Salal building. A single production meter monitors total system output, while 12 sub-meters track consumption in individual units for utility billing.

Buyers are rolling the cost of solar, about $15,000 per unit, into their mortgages to take advantage of low interest rates at the time of purchase.

“We wanted it very clean and divisible by all the owners,” Lotakis said. “I think it would be pretty difficult for six, 10, 12 people to come together and agree upon how the system would work after the fact. This gave us a chance to just deliver it.”

Lotakis expects the 44kW array to produce about $1,500 in incentives per unit annually – cumulatively much higher than the state’s $5,000 cap on incentives for a single-family residence.

Next door at the 12-unit Juniper apartment building, the 44kW rooftop array is similar but the equation is different. Renters will enjoy the benefits of solar production through net-metering, but not the annual state solar rebate. That will go to the building’s single owner, and will max out at the state’s $5,000 cap.

The two-story Elan townhomes presented the most straightforward challenge. Individual 6-9kW solar packages are offered for each section of the common roof. No modules will cross the “virtual lot lines,” making each system self-contained within the owner’s patch of rooftop. Three systems have been installed so far.

Growing neighborhood solar

From project inception, Asani set out to build the most environmentally friendly development possible.

Relentless sourcing of renewable materials and low-impact fixtures, and close connection to the island’s town center, have positioned Grow Community in the marketplace for healthy lifestyle-conscious buyers.

The project’s first phase is noted for its shared pea-patch gardens and winding footpaths through close-set homes. The second and third phases are oriented around a woodland grove and open greenway.

The project has earned recognition in national magazines and won awards from local and national homebuilder associations. It is only the second planned community in North America to be certified under the One Planet Living standards.

Grow’s first phase of 23 detached units sold out immediately, and every homeowner chose to add the solar package.
grow2

Asani has also showcased Made In Washington components to support the state’s solar industry.

Modules at the Salal are by Itek Energy of Bellingham, while the Juniper and Elan arrays include APsystems microinverters manufactured and distributed by Blue Frog Solar of Poulsbo.

Using a mix of in-state and out-of-state components allows Asani to achieve different price points for buyers while optimizing local incentives where possible.

Lotakis cautions that Grow Community’s multifamily solar program relies on particularities in Washington law. Multifamily programs elsewhere would face their own challenges, although he believes Grow offers a useful model for developers nationwide to consider.

With the Salal building only recently certified for occupancy, new residents have no comparative data on their energy savings. But the solar component was attractive, as it has been to buyers throughout the three-neighborhood, 142-home project due to be completed in late 2017.

“Solar was a factor,” one new resident said, “along with a development that encourages a sense of community.”

Between the federal tax credit and annual rebates from the state, Lotakis said, owners buying into the Salal condominiums could have their share of the common array paid off within five years.

“And because they’ve rolled the cost of solar into their mortgage, they don’t really see it,” he said.
“Those production checks will be like a dividend.”

The Grove is wrapping up, now on to the Park

Summer finds us buttoning up – that is, putting the finishing touches on Grow Community’s second neighborhood, the Grove.

Setting the pace is the Juniper at the north end of the grounds. New residents are now moving in, and the rooftop solar system is online and producing energy to offset the building’s needs. The largest planned solar community in Washington state keeps raising the bar!

The Tsuga now has its roof, with siding following in short order. Before July ends the building will look finished from the outside as work turns inward, with completion and move-in dates set for fall.
screen-shot-2016-06-30-at-10-09-20-am-1024x1017

The Woodland Homes at the south end of the Grove are nearing completion and should be finished by August. All of our buyers to date are adding solar, and you could be next – one home remains available, with an expansive 400 sf. outdoor deck among its many fine features and appointments.

And if you’ve not visited the Grove lately, you’ve missed the generous plantings that give this neighborhood its name. Landscape touchup is slated for the end of summer as the swath of young trees and shrubs begin to settle in for the cooler months.

Attention now turns to our third and final neighborhood, the Park. Work has commenced on the Sage and Lilac, where foundations are underway and should be completed by the end of this month – framing to follow, and pre-sales to be announced soon as well.

Intrigued? Why wait! Comfortable and inviting units are still available for purchase throughout the Grove. Three-bedroom homes are available for move-in today, with more 2-bedroom units coming online this fall.

Rentals, too: 2- and 3-bedroom units in the Juniper are ready immediate move-in. Visit Grow Community and see our model home today!

Construction is apace and sales are brisk at Grow phase 2, the Grove!

We are excited to report that Salal building solar went live on April 29. It has been a long road to this point, but the building’s rooftop is now producing energy. And there’s more to come – the first round of Elan owners should be seeing solar installed later in May.

solar-install

The Woodland homes at the south end of the Grove have taken shape, along with the Tsuga bilding, with completion expected from late June through August.

Sales-wise, our rental building, the Juniper, is now fully reserved. The building should be completed with first move-ins by the end of this month.

Two units remain available in the owner-occupied Salal building – the current model home, and a three-bedroom unit. Inquire within!

Finally: Big news on our Community Center will be coming soon, and permits for our next phase the Park are now in hand. Our construction crews will continue their steady migration south to this final phase very soon.

[Best_Wordpress_Gallery id=”7″ gal_title=”Construction Sales May 2016″]