Is community living the next big thing?

Over summer a team of NZCB members’ travelled to United States to attend the NAHB International Builders’ Show (IBS) held at the Las Vegas Convention Centre. The 2020 Builders’ Show brought together more than 1400 top manufacturers and suppliers from around the world, showcasing the latest and most in-demand products and services.

As part of the trip our members also did group home builder tours with Pardee Homes in Las Vegas and Tri Pointe Homes in Los Angeles, both are part of Tri Pointe Group which is one of the largest homebuilding companies in the U.S. Their focus was creating experiences tailored to their customers – being in tune with their needs and desires. Both organisations focus on being young, forward-thinking companies that think in a fresh way about what a home can be.

NZCB got to visit over 6 great park neighbourhoods, offering a diversity of architectural styles along with great amenities and open space opportunities. The focus was primarily on communal gathering spaces.

So what do we mean when we say we saw an emphasis on “communal gathering spaces”? Their approach to developments was all about neighbourhoods. And while some Kiwi developers design whole neighbourhoods, Pardee Homes and Tri Pointe took it to a whole new level.

There is no shortage of entertainment and amenities in their neighbourhoods. With multiple gardens, recreational centres, communal pools, dedicated barbecue areas and fully loaded gyms, these Americans know how to create a community. Even their fur babies are taken into consideration – with their own personal Bark Parks and lots of shaded areas. Some developments also include new school developments – from primary through to college.

And while we can’t necessarily build all these things ourselves, especially if you’re only building one house, it would be great to see New Zealand property developers start to think about more than just the physical buildings they create. As sections get smaller and resources scarcer, it makes sense to create community amenities from the outset. It would be great to see our local developers consider the whole lives of their residents, in the same way that our best builders think about the effects of our buildings on the quality of life for their occupants.

Suffice to say, we left the United States thoroughly inspired!

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