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Forum Invites Community To Co-Create EcoNeighbourhood

Jack Anderson and Emanuel Hajek onsite Kirkstone Place, a proposed econeighbourhood in Cedar. Photo: Marina Sacht

Picture this: like minded people living in a neighbourhood that’s self reliant on energy, water, waste. It’s not a environmentalist dream but a reality coming to Cedar.

Kirkstone Place is a 10-acre sustainable neighbourhood planned near Hemer Park. It will support 33 families in energy-efficient single-family and attached homes. Site-adapted passive solar design will feature natural building materials, off-the-grid indoor- and outdoor-use rainwater harvesting, stormwater management, heat recovery ventilation and permaculture-based community organic gardens.

With the cost of going green coming down and economies of scale are making renewable energy and alternative systems economically viable for homeowners.

“We have a unique opportunity to design this precedent-setting neighbourhood in a collaborative way, to reflect the values of those who will live here,” says Emanuel Hajek, whose firm Emanuel Homes is developing the project.

Hajek and his investment partner Wim Zuydervelt have engaged local planning and design firm Greenplan to assist on Kirkstone Place. In 2011 they hosted a design charrette that gathered initial input from the community and from experts in community planning, renewable energy, rainwater harvesting, alternative septic, green design, environmental protection, permaculture, and urban farming.

The response has been great so far. “Everyone we’ve talked to has been excited.”

Since that time, the consortium has taken significant strides to garner support from the Regional District. The RDN Area A Official Community Plan also supports the neighbourhood.

“Having Kirkstone Place come to fruition in one’s backyard is the dream come true with an extra scoop of ice cream on top,” says RDN Electoral A Director Alec McPherson.

Now they are asking for more input from the community in a public forum Sept 26 at 6:30 p.m at the Cedar Community Hall.

Greenplan president Jack Anderson, who will present at the event, is motivated by the potential that like-minded neighbours can contribute to this micro-community.

For more information, and opportunities to submit your own vision and interest in the project, join the forum.

“There’s nothing like this in Western Canada. No one has done it like this” says Anderson.



About the author: The Boss

The Boss

Marina is Editor of TAKE 5 Magazine.