Background

Bear Tree is a 500+ acre mixed-use development within the Village of DeForest and the Village of Windsor in Dane County, WI. Foth prepared a plan for the development while amending the local communities’ Comprehensive Plans and preparing an Urban Service Area expansion application. This neighborhood is currently developing as a mixed-use live, work, play community comprised of diverse residential (single-family, multi-family, zero lot line, senior housing), commercial, civic/institutional, office/research park, and passive and active recreational uses including about five miles of multi-purpose trails. This development will be a catalyst for economic investment in the region.

Approach

Foth balanced the development desires for the landowner and the future land use needs of the villages in order to create this successful mixed-use development. A variety of concepts were produced and refined until the land use and zoning requirements of the cooperating communities were fulfilled. A series of open meetings were led in order to assure that both DeForest and Windsor attained the highest and best uses of the land while facilitating a cooperative and productive future boundary agreement.

Results

As a component of the planning and development of the neighborhood concept, the Villages have refined and expanded their boundary agreement, helping to ensure a long-term, cooperative relationship. In addition, the neighborhood will help promote environmental stewardship and sustainability through energy efficient, “green” design and progressive stormwater management including mandatory water conservation and aggressive on-site infiltration practices.