Driven by a combination of a need for security and a desire for a better lifestyle a growing percentage of Americans are finding their way back to the land.
This is the perspective of California-based Refuge West which believes there is a growing market opportunity to develop new types of vibrant communities tied directly to natural resources.
The development model that Refuge West is pursuing focuses, at the most basic level, on opportunities where communities can be sustainably established through the use of appropriate technologies and practices. Beyond that Refuge West looks for opportunities where the community can be tied to a natural resource and a strong market for that resource.
Because preserving the economic value of the resource is a key to the project’s success, Refuge West looks for unique solutions in the development of the land that preserves and enhances the sustainability of the resource by protecting the environment and providing for a vibrant place for people to live and work.
Refuge West is currently is working with a land owner in Washington State who owns a 700 acre parcel in South Puget Sound.
The site has many attributes which fit the model including substantial water rights, quality soils and microclimate and access to major markets of the Seattle metropolitan area.
It is a beautiful site nestled in the fork of two rivers, surrounded by forest land.
The project is in the pre development phase. It currently contemplates the following plan elements:
· A branded organic field and greenhouse produce operation.
· A grass fed beef operation and an organic fed poultry operation.
· The residential development set outside the prime resource land.
· Arrangements with various agencies for wildlife protection and stream embankment protections.
· A residential ownership model whereby the residents own a share of the farm corporation.
Refuge West is in the due diligence phase testing both the farming and residential assumptions and working with the owner to optimize ownership and operational values.
It is Refuge West’s intent to perfect the development plan with the owner and bring equity investment to the project and adequately capitalize the project.