Located an hour north of Miami in Boynton Beach, Florida, Seabourn Cove is the largest multifamily project in the U.S. to achieve gold level in the Home Innovation NGBS Green Certification Program. The idea for the project arose after The Housing Group - the developer of the project – noticed there was a need for quality rentals in the area. The company joined forces with green consultants Two Trails, Inc., to assemble a large tract of land with exceptional frontage on US1.
When finished, Seabourn Cove will have 456 units on 23 acres of land. Construction began in August 2011, while preleasing started February 2012. At that time, 308 units were complete and 280 units had already been leased. Rick Lococo, Project Manager with FM Contract Services, LLC, pinpoints June 28, 2013 as the completion date for all units.
From the start, the developer wanted to build a project with reduced electric and water bills to attract future residents. New green technology and net zero design was also of interest. More than a year before breaking ground, The Housing Group engaged several design professionals to start running energy models, research new building materials, and/or combinations of energy materials. That's when Two Trails was brought into the mix.
Smith and his team remained involved from start to finish. Along with energy modeling, Two Trails assisted the design team in making decisions such as overhang size, window sizes and locations, insulation types, and exterior colors and types. Once design was in place, Two Trails began working on materials selections based on the sustainability characteristics. During the construction phase, Smith and his team were onsite weekly, performing inspections at pre-drywall and at final completion.
The resulting homes at Seabourn Cove boast numerous green features, such as reduced electric and water bills as a result of R38 ceiling insulation, lowE 366 glass in vinyl impact windows, 16 SEER HVAC system, CFL fixtures and bulbs, and Energy Star appliances. The community itself also provides environmentally friendly attractions, such as electric vehicle charging station outlets in all garages, two community charging stations, drought tolerant landscaping with low-flow irrigation, a rain garden, dark sky compliant outdoor lighting, and walking paths that provide convenient access to local shopping.
In addition to the attractive green features, Lococo calls Seabourn Cove a "class A" community loaded with amenities. Located near the beach, shopping and nightlife, the rents are market rate and the community is close to major highways and airports. Prospective residents can choose from the following: one-bedroom, 888-square-foot homes; two-bedroom 1,417- to 1,500-square-foot homes; and three-bedroom, 1,718-square-foot homes.
"The residents report that they are very happy living here," says Lococo. "They enjoy electric and water bills that are half of what they are used to." In order to keep residents aware of the green features of their home, each receives a resident green awareness package upon signing a lease.
Seabourn Cove has welcomed numerous renters who'd like to make a difference in the environment, or at least make a difference in their pocketbooks. The community has been a boost for the city as well.
"Practices and products selected for this project collectively help protect the health and vitality of Boynton Beach for the enjoyment and use of residents today and in the future," says Lococo. "It's a win-win solution. Residents get a great, healthier home where they can live more comfortably and with lower operating costs. The local community can continue to reap all the rewards and benefits that Boynton Beach has to offer."
Energy-Efficient and Green Features
Low VOC components
LowE 366 argon filled impact vinyl windows
R38 ceiling insulation
16 SEER HVAC systems
CFL fixtures and bulbs
Electric vehicle charging outlets in all garages
Community electric vehicle charging station
Drought tolerant landscaping
Low-flow irrigation system
All surface water drainage is retained on site and filtered back to the ground through exfiltration systems