WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF RURAL LANDS WEST?
The detailed planning that has gone into Rural Lands West (RLW) will set the standard for environmental preservation and planned community development for years to come. Below are a few of the benefits Rural Lands West will provide for residents, neighbors and the environment.
Rural Lands West will be permitted locally under Collier County’s nationally recognized Rural Lands Stewardship (RLS) program. The RLS program takes a global approach to master planning and incentivizes landowners to concentrate development away from valuable environmentally sensitive areas, preserving significant amounts of land for open space, wetlands and wildlife habitat. Open space will dominate the landscape with approximately three acres of preserved land for every acre developed. The open space, including agriculture, parks, preserves, wetlands and wildlife habitat will be preserved in perpetuity at no cost to the taxpayers.
Collier Enterprises has joined four leading conservation organizations: Audubon of Florida, Collier County Audubon Society, Defenders of Wildlife, and Florida Wildlife Federation, and six other eastern Collier County land owners in a collaborative effort to protect the Florida Panther by creating the Florida Panther Protection Program. The new Florida Panther Protection Program will preserve a significant contiguous range for panther territory, which in turn benefits dozens of other species. In addition, the program will create a conservation fund to support measures such as acquiring and restoring habitat and installing panther crossings and fencing. In compliance with the Florida Protection Program, Rural Lands West will generate several million dollars for the Panther Protection Fund. Click here to learn more.
As a stand-alone community, Rural Lands West will feature offices, shopping, services, healthcare and other aspects of everyday life – all within the boundaries of the community. The location provides an ideal place for a new kind of sustainable community that provides everything residents need. The commercial hub within the town center will generate a significant number of jobs, which will benefit eastern Collier County and reduce the necessity for residents in eastern Golden Gate Estates to commute to the west coast for employment, shopping, services and entertainment.
SERVICE, RETAIL & ENTERTAINMENT OPPORTUNITES
For many years residents of eastern Collier County have been forced to drive a considerable distance for shopping, professional services, dining, entertainment and county services. Rural Lands West will bring all of those conveniences in a town center atmosphere to eastern Collier County, while maintaining the rural character of the area.
Rural Lands West will generate approximately $86 million in transportation impact fee credits to fund road improvements in Collier County. In addition, the availability of businesses, shops, schools, parks, restaurants and services within Rural Lands West will give residents of Golden Gate Estates new reasons to stay in eastern Collier County.
REDUCED WATER ALLOCATION
The allocation of water for the community of Rural Lands West will be less than has been historically permitted for agriculture and farming in this location. Additionally, Collier Enterprises will be investigating the potential for implementing reuse water supplies for irrigation needs, which may further reduce the development’s demand for fresh water.
PRESERVING COLLIER’S AGRICULTURAL HERITAGE
For nearly a century, orange groves, cattle ranches, and tomato and vegetable farms have been a defining feature of the rural landscape of southwest Florida. Although Rural Lands West will be developed on land that has been farmed for decades, a considerable amount of land in agriculture will be preserved under the RLS program, designed to maintain the county’s agricultural heritage and the special sense of “place” agriculture creates. Because Collier Enterprises has a sufficient inventory of farm land that is not currently in production, the company can relocate agricultural operations from Rural Lands West while maintaining current production levels.
CREATING SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES
Rural Lands West will be a modern, self-sustaining community with a variety of housing options by quality developers. RLW will be a great place to live in Collier County with amenities such as golf, nature trails, parks and water features — all within a rural setting that has been designed with the idea of preserving southwest Florida’s unique environment.