The New York Times
Get Away, but Make It Sustainable
Excerpt from NYT
By Michael Croley
Nov. 4, 2022
Joel and Susan Carlins, who founded the Magellan Development Group in Chicago, were among the first developers in Illinois to win a silver certificate from LEED — a rating system for green building created by the nonprofit U.S. Green Building Council — for the Lakeshore East development in 2009.
So when they were looking for a second home in the British Virgin Islands, sustainability, along with natural beauty, was one of their goals. They found plenty of both in the secluded Oil Nut Bay. Among the many things the community has incorporated into its plan, where homes can sell for upward of $19.5 million, are restrictions on plastic bottles, having its own glass-crushing facility on site, as well as desalination plants to help create potable water. Solar power generates electricity for desalination, as well as amenities like air conditioning, hot water and community lighting.
And while materials must be shipped in over great distances, which disqualifies the project from the ability to get full LEED certification, the developer of the resort, David Johnson, said homeowners are encouraged to work with Oil Nut Bay’s team to build their homes to those standards. The Carlins, who’ve had a home in St. John for many years, were looking for a place that was “pristine,” Susan said.
Oil Nut Bay’s homes start from $2.95 million. The development’s mandate calls for 50 percent of the land to remain as open space with nature trails and land preserves. Susan said she and her husband liked the limits placed on the scope of building because what they fell in love would stay that way for many years.
And because the Carlins were not new to both second homes or developing their own high rises or housing communities, they often sent their own people from their Chicago firm to examine the construction of their new home. They said the reports always came back positive. Joel even went so far as to take his own laser level with him on one excursion.
“The walls were aligned properly,” he said. “Every single one of them was within the range of perfect.”
Read the full article: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/04/realestate/sustainable-getaways-second-homes.html