From the very beginning, the Weems development was destined to be something completely different, something better than the norm. It has been a 7-year creative process in the making, the sole purpose of which has been to create an intelligent community paired with cutting-edge sustainable systems, superior building materials, vast open spaces, and a modern farmhouse / timber frame design aesthetic that compliments and retains the rural appeal of Lafayette.
Following are the key components of the development, and what we hope will become a national landmark in quality building, conscientious planning and sustainable neighborhood design:
Rich social relationships are one of the cornerstones of a healthy and vibrant society. The diversity of housing options in the development allows for a wide spectrum of residents, from all ages, income brackets and abilities, to live together in a social environment.
An intelligent mix of single family homes, townhomes, duplexes and apartments will support a level of connectivity sorely lacking in modern life. Variety of housing options will also support the concept of aging in place – i.e. when a resident is not forced out of a community but has the ability to move through a range of residential layouts to suit their abilities as they grow older.
The neighborhood will be a pioneering, community-based development in which the traditional values of a small village converge with social and environmental sustainability. Our residents will participate in dynamic solutions to the issues of energy costs through cutting edge sustainable net-zero building practices, accessible food production with an on-site CSA and farmer’s market, and divergence from standard isolationist neighborhood design by ensuring our community remains a vibrant and welcoming home for people of all ages through civic, cultural, recreational and social engagement. The 3 legs of aging in place are: a community center or gathering place, a nonprofit to support these initiatives and universal design elements that give flexibility to the dwellings and neighborhood.
This neighborhood is designed for user-friendly sustainable living. Most people want to care for the environment and their community. This is the key to sustainability. Smart design can help.
Parks, Open Space, and Habitats
To help preserve the overall rural aesthetic, 47% of the development will consist of an extensive network of parks, pocket parks, greens, open landscape, trail corridors, habitat, agriculture & riparian areas. An 8 acre horse pasture and barn will be preserved on the land for residents to utilize and the neighborhood open space park will be centrally situated at the highest elevated point so residents can enjoy the beautiful mountains views.
Diverse Housing Options
It would have been easier and far more profitable to build large single-family residences and call it a day. However, to meet the housing needs of a full spectrum of family types, including seniors aging in place, we have planned for a diverse mix of unit types, home sizes, and floor plan configurations, including handicap-accessible home options, ground level bedrooms, senior cottages, condos and apartments.
Respecting the site’s topography, hydrology, & vegetation is of paramount importance to the development team. Innovative road and drainage design uses existing topographic lines and reduces the need for excessive overlot-grading so commonly seen in large developments.
Integrated Storm Water Design
Intelligent storm water management will ensure that natural water passively irrigates the landscaping, reducing the demand on resource-sapping irrigation systems. Other features include streetscape rain gardens, percolation parks, bio swales and permeable paving & surfaces.
Aging in the Community
An intelligent mix of single family homes, townhomes, duplexes, condos, apartments and even “granny flats” will support the concept of aging in place – i.e. when a resident is not forced out of a community but has the ability to move through a range of residential home sizes and layouts to suit their abilities as they grow older. Smaller homes, apartments, and granny flats will allow caregivers to live or sleep close to the people they are caring for. Homes with ground level bedrooms are spread throughout the neighborhood. And a non-profit that supports aging at home will be run out of the community center.
Open Space and Community Center
The community center will be the social hub and heartbeat of the development. It will be designed to provide residents with a central gathering place and social nexus for hosting farm to table dinners, movie nights, health and wellness programs, lectures, workshops, dances, concerts and maker spaces to encourage innovation and creativity for all ages.
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Farm
An operational Community Supported Agriculture farm will provide fresh produce to residents and the larger surrounding community‐‐ as well as opportunities to participate in agriculture activities and events. A CSA farm eliminates the number of miles that your food travels, and the amount of fossil fuels that is used to transport your food, (your average vegetable travels over 1500 miles before it’s consumed). Also, the concept of supporting a locally grown farm within the community is important for maintaining Lafayette’s rural character.
HeartEye Village Resource Center (HVRC)
One of the fundamental ideological principles underlying the genesis of this development was, from the beginning and still is, the social vision that is dedicated to helping people of all ages and stages of life age with dignity in the supportive network of their own neighborhood. How is this achieved? With careful design elements both on the ground and inside the buildings , as well as a central gathering place in the form of a community center. To further this goal, a nonprofit will be formed (HVRC) to act as a clearinghouse and incubator for creative ways in which to help achieve this vision. This cutting edge social element is critical with the tsunamai of baby boomers in our midst and coming our way.
Gateway to Lafayette
Arapahoe at Highway 287 is the northern gateway to Lafayette, and our aim is to strengthen the Lafayette community image by preserving the rural open space & agriculture along Arapahoe. The northern boundary of the development will consist of an operational CSA farm as well as the northern entrance to the community. The Weems development is conveniently located just nine miles from Pearl Street Mall in Boulder, seven miles from the Denver Boulder Turnpike, and seven miles from I-25.
Multiple Access Points
At build-out completion, the Weems development will have multiple entry/exit points, that direct car travel away from Anna’s Farm and towards Aspen Ridge Drive, 287, and Arapahoe. Access points will be as follows:
Public Transit Routes
Current access to the Jump and L, and at the crossroads of future BRT on Arapahoe Road and Highway 287.
Coherent & Connected
The Weems design team has focused on connectivity as one of the key elements of the development. Pedestrian connectivity will be achieved with the use of an extensive network of pedestrian, child, and bicycle-friendly streets and trails. Intersections and pedestrian crosswalks have been scaled to be safe for all residents. Regional trails and open space connectivity allows residents to access all parts of the neighborhood, and neighboring communities, without using motor vehicles.
Connectivity works both ways. Intelligent road design allows neighboring communities with slow local streets access to public transit options on Arapahoe Road and Highway 287. The coherent network of roads supports walking and biking to and from neighboring communities, and further reduces residents’ dependence on motor vehicles. Regional trails, rural ditch roads and bike path sidewalks provide interesting and safe routes for moving through the neighborhood.
Built to Last
Every single-family home in the Weems development will utilize high-quality, durable, sustainable and environmentally-friendly construction materials. Elegant and timeless timber frame construction will be complemented by ultra-high-performance wall/ceiling envelopes and the latest in energy-efficient mechanical systems. Each home will be built with high end exterior and interior materials inspired by the outdoors, connecting Colorado’s beauty to the residents who reside within the community.
Made in Lafayette, Colorado
Cornerstone Homes Development Company is a local Lafayette, Colorado company committed to supporting sustainable growth within the community. We are not an out-of-town developer that doesn’t know the community we are building in. The team who stands behind the project lives and works in Lafayette so they take pride in the future of the community surrounding the development. We have to live and work here too, and will stand behind what we put on the ground. The Weems community will be designed, planned, fabricated and constructed in its entirety by our staff, all of whom work at our headquarters less than four miles from the jobsite. The development will be an significant economic driver for the City of Lafayette, creating hundreds of new jobs in the community.
Hi-Tech Fabrication & Construction
All timber frame packages and wall/roof systems will be fabricated at our high-tech 30,000 sqft facility, right here in Lafayette. Our heavy timber CNC machines are the most advanced in North America, and can fabricate in excess of 3 million board feet of timber per year (roughly 200 homes). Advance fabrication in a controlled environment drastically reduces overall construction time, and ensures a superior, more precise engineered product.
Sustainable Building Systems
Green isn’t just a buzzword anymore. For us, every home is a green home. Using a combination of solar PV, geothermal heating/cooling and a high-performance thermal envelope, and combined with proper energy saving techniques, every home in the Weems development will be designed to consume less energy than it creates.
Did you know that windows can account for as much as 25 percent of energy loss in a home? That light colored materials on the external walls and roof can reduce cooling requirements by up to 15 percent? That a well-sealed thermal envelope can reduce energy costs by as much as 50 percent? This is the kind of knowledge and experience you can expect us to incorporate into every home at the Weems development.
Modern Farmhouse & Timber Frame
A home should thrive and inspire its owners for generations. Through innovation and best practices, timber frame and SIP-enclosed homes provide versatility of design, historical character, and ecological responsibility. Timberframe homes and structures are as solid as they are beautiful. Add to that flexibility of design, energy efficiency, and how eco-friendly they are to build, as well as a strength and appeal that will last for centuries, and you have tapped into our vision for the Weems neighborhood.
Net Zero Energy
Growing concerns about rising energy prices, energy independence, and the impact of climate change has created a demand for a more energy efficient way of building. A net zero-energy home is a building with zero net energy consumption, meaning the total amount of energy used by the building on an annual basis is roughly equal to the amount of renewable energy created on the site. Net Zero is achieved by a combination of advances in sustainable building technologies using Solar PV, geothermal heating/cooling and a high-performance thermal envelope.
Each structure is carefully are laid out positioned and spaced to increase winter solar gain and minimize summer solar gain. This simple practice dramatically reduces a home’s energy consumption which results in lower energy costs, reduced maintenance, and superior comfort.
Land Use and Amenities
Click to Enlarge
Yellow – Single Family
Orange – Townhouses, paired homes, or single family.
Red – Multifamily
Purple – Community Amenities