Elkington Forest is a 1000 acre forest, 35 minutes north of Victoria, BC. A full 850 acres is conserved as Forest Stewardship Council certified eco-forestry or outright conservation with limited or restricted access. On the remaining 150 acres, half of the land is in food production, and half is developed as three attractive residential Hamlets with a total of 77 homes and 15 eco-businesses.
The trails through the forest, around the ponds, and alongside the agricultural lands are just waiting to be explored. Bring your horse, bike or hiking boots. Miles of trails are right at your back door. And you've got to see these views!
The Living Forest social enterprise is a partnership between the founding charity, the Trust for Sustainable Forestry, and the for-profit corporation, Living Forest Communities. This partnership informs all that we do; from the first vision statement, through the ecologically sensitive design process, to the use of the last dollar earned.
This is the best way to build new residential communities, and the best way to harvest timber sustainably. Come for a site visit this week.
Contact us now at 250 386 6600 or online for more information.
Purchase a .25 - 1.8 acre lot in the Trailhead Hamlet, starting at $219,000.
Consideration for realtors.
19 April 2013
Last Saturday, we went up to Elkington Forest with a family who love the unique combination of forest conservation and direct access to hiking (especially for their monstrously large dog - LUKE). They also appreciate the creation of a community that will provide a peaceful place to raise a young family. As Canadians that have traveled and lived in many locations around the world, they are looking for a Vancouver Island home that feels like the right fit for their lifestyle and ethics. We talked a lot about the dreams that they have for their family.
We had not gone far when their son was captured dancing by himself in the morning sunshine. Apparently, he is a great dancer and loves to dance on his own.
We are often asked "Who is your demographic?", "Who do you think will live here?"
We have a broad audience interested in this unique conservation community model, and an even broader audience that follows us on social media, facebook, and twitter. Many people live in the Cowichan Valley, or in Victoria. The next largest group of followers is from Vancouver and region. A surprising number of those who regularly follow us are from the prairies or central Canada. The crazy stat is that on average people will spend more than 7 minutes on the site - on average.
So far, it terms of people who have actually purchased building lots and plan to build at Elkington, we have quite a range of ages. Most of the purchasers have been over the age of 45, with a few over 65, but three also have families with children under 16. We have families, couples, and people who are single. We are building Elkington so that people of all ages and stages of life will feel comfortable.
At this early phase of development, we are working with people who self-identify as "Pioneers" or "Early Adopters". They are looking for something a bit different, more sustainable, less consumptive, and lighter on the land. Some have backgrounds in energy-efficient natural building technology or permaculture. Some simply love the direct access that they would have to miles and miles of trails. They are generously lending their insights as we build the culture and ethos of this place. Often they are folks who say they have been looking for this type of community for a long time.
These also are people who "get" what we are doing and who can see it, even though it is not built yet. We have deliberately avoided cutting down trees in the Hamlet areas, which makes it difficult to envision, difficult to perceive the distances between park edge and house, between the future community centre and the raised allotment gardens, between the Hamlet and the agricultural areas. We have found that this is a tricky exercise because many people simply cannot see a two dimensional plan, and envision a three-dimensional future world. It is hard to do unless you are experienced with plan based spatial orientation.
Perhaps, the best descriptor of who we think will live here, is - We are looking for people who see themselves as the Stewards of the Forest, and are willing to create a Community that Cares. There could be many other descriptors.
Maybe, like the happy boy in the photo, these are people
who want to find themselves
dancing in the sunlight
on the edge of the forest.