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Frequently Asked Questions

What size of property does the Living Forest Communities business model need?

In order to successfully initiate a Living Forest Community, with the full eco-forestry operation and sustainable hamlet component, we generally require a minimum of 500 -1,000 acres of land. In most circumstances, we need a large enough parcel so that the timber that is selectively harvested from the land can be of adequate volume to generate a meaningful value-added revenue. Revenues generated from non-timer resources are also possible on both small and large parcels.

On parcels between 100 and 500 acres, it is possible to create a small conservation community, but the land dedicated for conservation and the opportunities for eco-forestry will be quite limited. The first of these types of conservation communities, Everwoods, was established by the Trust for Sustainable Forestry on a 150 acre parcel on Cortes Island, but it was located adjacent to an active mill site and the 150 acre eco-forest at Tiber Bay.

Where is Living Forest Communities active?

Living Forest Communities is currently active looking for properties on Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands and the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia.

Why are dense hamlets better than houses spaced out among the trees?

While it is possible to establish covenants protecting the vegetation and natural habitat and still have houses spaced out among the trees, it is likely that the overall impact of the more suburban forms development would be greater than in a clustered traditional pattern. In addition, it is difficult to create the same sense of community with larger, more suburban or rural sized lots. By the design, scale and proportion of the public or semi-public spaces between buildings, Traditional Neighbourhoods encourage a maximum amount of face-to-face interaction and walkability. Traditional neighbourhoods also facilitate a mix of uses, live/work spaces, artist shops, and incidental offices.

How does Living Forest Communities choose which properties they are going to develop? What are the criteria they are looking for and why?

We are looking for lands where eco-system based forestry could occur, where the lands have a high conservation value, and the lands would be attractive to residential buyers. Our primary goal is to establish eco-system based forestry instead of allowing industrial clear-cutting. However, we are not a land trust with a vast membership that can buy land for pure conservation. Our most successful method of conserving land for eco-system based forestry, is by designing and developing small conservation hamlets of light-on-the-land building sites.

How long does it take to complete a project from purchasing the land to selling of the home sites?

Depending on the size of the development, and the complexity of the rezoning process, we anticipate that a typical Living Forest Communities of 75 or fewer dwellings will require between 3 and 4 years to complete.

How soon into the development stage can interested buyers purchase home sites?

Once the Rezoning is completed, and the Preliminary Layout Approval is given, we could begin pre-selling home sites on the basis of a real estate Disclosure Statement.

As a homesite owner, what activities will I be able to do on the land?

We anticipate that home owners will be able to have live/work studios and home offices within their dwellings. This would permit a full range of personal and professional services, general home office activities, work shop and artisan activities, making of crafts, small manufacturing and the sale of items produced on the property. In the yards associated with the dwellings, we anticipate gardening, agro-forestry, and the harvesting of agricultural, floral and other non-timber resources. Depending on the location, we want to have at least one of the live/work home sites function as a small retail outlet for day-to-day needs, where up to 50% of the floor space could be items not manufactured on site.

Apart from the hamlet locations, we will also designate an area specifically for light industrial timber millwork, construction and manufacturing activities.

Should you have a question, please don't hesitate to contact us.