Building Sustainable Neighborhoods
The new town of Seabrook nestles into the wind-swept trees on a bluff overlooking Washington’s Pacific Coast. We designed the new town and continue as its lead Town Planner with ongoing neighborhoods updates and additions.
The town was first conceived in 2002 while touring the Oregon and Washington Coasts searching for the right site with the Town Founder, Casey Roloff and his family.
Leading the Design Charrette
We led a team of planners, civil and traffic engineers, architects and landscape designers in a week long Charrette at the site. We created the Master Plan, Form Based Code, perspective renderings, building types and planning diagrams. We conducted public meetings at the local firehouse during the coming months, presenting the plans for the new town, and gathering knowledge of the local cultural. We continued touring the most valued towns along the coast, studying and photographing the region’s vernacular buildings and landscape. The plan for the new town received unanimous approval when first presented to the Gray’s Harbor Planning Commission.
Creating the Form Based Codes and Leading Building Design
Seabrook is designed with a rich mix of home choices for different family types and incomes, in addition to local shopping, recreation, and employment. We created the Form Based Code that guides the design of all the buildings, in addition to designed many of the core housing stock offered by Seabrook. The Code defined building form, massing, frontage types, placement on the lots, carriage houses, landscape elements, material palette window proportions, eave details, water table details, etc.
The initial town plan contains over 400 residences on 88 acres. On an additional several hundred acres, which was assembled by the development company at the start, we recently planned new agrarian villages that will have livestock and food producing gardens.
Sustainable Site Design and Town Planning
Seabrook is planned as a model for sustainable community building. Up to 35% of the initial 88-acre site is managed as preserved forest, wetlands, stream corridors and parkland. We concentrated the development footprint into intimate lots, while creating active parks, plazas, and greens. While there is a gradation of smaller town-center to larger town-edge lots, the majority of open space is maintained in the public realm, and less in the private lots. Many of the lanes are paved with a narrow drive lane and casual parking on crushed oyster shell edges. On some streets houses face onto walking and biking paths without cars (they are to he rear off of alleyways.
Houses and shops on Seabrook Avenue and Main Street view through preserved natural glens out to the Pacific. The houses face promenades with crushed oyster shell paths for the public to enjoy a walk along ocean bluffs. Crescent Park is the central gathering place for festivals, and evening bonfires.
Seabrook is designed to connect all its residents with the valuable resources of the ocean, beach, streams, and wetlands that envelop the community. A ‘green network’ of community greens, forest parks, habitat preserves, promenades, boardwalks, and trails surround and run through the town, allowing complete public enjoyment of streams, wetland preserves, bluffs, beaches, and deep forests.