Colorado is an incredible place to call home. From the majestic Rocky Mountains to the Great Plains, the Centennial State’s natural prairie landscape, picturesque mountain views, rushing rivers and vast open spaces create a unique connection to nature.
At Uplands, we recognize that sustainability improves the quality of our lives, protects our ecosystem and preserves natural resources for future generations. And that is why we prioritize sustainability to maintain our connection to the natural environment.
When building new housing communities, it is crucial that the homes both meet our present needs without compromising the ability of future generations to fulfill their own needs. While every community developer takes its own approach to the development of sustainable housing, we go beyond typical standards for sustainability because we call Colorado home too.
Moving Westminster Forward
As city leaders and planners coordinate long-term plans and projects to create the framework for the future of Westminster, the area Uplands occupies was explicitly identified as a transition area that will be able to fulfill the “city’s overall vision and land use intent.” Whether focusing on the city’s Sustainability Plan, its Water Supply Plan, their Housing Needs Assessment or any other coordinated plans or projects, this area of Westminster is one of the areas with the greatest potential to grow and change over the next two decades.
Uplands will play a significant role in establishing a strong identity, fostering ongoing economic vitality and creating a sense of environmental stewardship. The prime location within the southern part of Westminster – close to transit, highways, and commuter corridors – is an ideal infill development. Rather than finding open spaces 15 or more miles away from where people work, Uplands will offer individuals and families homes that are close to jobs.
Of Uplands’ 234 total acres, 20 percent of the site has been dedicated for publicly accessible parks, view corridors, pedestrian walkways and public spaces. But we go a step further: our sustainable housing community is a model of best practices in smart growth, resiliency and housing design.
Sustainability and Conservation at Uplands
We’re creating sustainability and resilience measures that don’t just meet the standards of today — we’re building for tomorrow.
Here are some of the ways we prioritize sustainability to maintain our intimate connection to nature. For more, check out our sustainability factsheet.
- All single-family detached homes will comply with EnergyStar and WaterSense.
Every Uplands home and apartment is expected to comply with the requirements for energy efficiency developed by Energy Star’s Residential New Construction program and will pursue Energy Star certification. Energy Star-certified homes and apartments achieve a 20 percent energy improvement on average. Additionally, every home and apartment will pursue the WaterSense label, allowing individuals and families to enjoy all the comforts of home while using less water and spending less money on utility bills. Uplands homes will be 30 percent more water-efficient than surrounding communities.
- All single-family detached and attached homes with garages will feature Level 2 EV car charging, and at least 5 percent of the units within multifamily and mixed-use buildings will feature Level 2 EV car chargers.
Fossil fuels are harming the environment and our health. We believe that the rapid transition to electric mobility is essential to building a sustainable future for everyone. By planning to provide every single-family home and other buildings throughout the community with EV charging solutions, we’re encouraging residents to charge up and help us build a future of transportation that is good for the community — and good for the planet.
- All single-family detached homes with traditional roofs will be designed as “solar-ready” for the future installation of rooftop photovoltaic systems, and all community facilities larger than 2,000 square feet feature a minimum 3-kilowatt solar photovoltaic system.
The cleanest and most abundant renewable energy source available, solar energy is natural and environmentally more sustainable than fossil fuel energy sources. By converting the sun’s energy into electricity, rooftop solar panel systems deliver the energy that can be used to heat and cool homes, light interior environments and even heat water for various uses.
- All multifamily or mixed-use buildings larger than 25,000 gross floor area will feature a cool roof with low-reflectance materials.
Uplands will leverage a new trend in eco-friendly design: cool roofs. Cool roofing helps keep temperatures inside a building cooler and reduces the energy used to cool our homes.
To fully protect our precious natural resources, communities like Westminster need to employ a range of land-use strategies, including building diverse housing types that increase density. All Uplands homes and apartments will use 30 percent less water per home — and significantly less energy — than the typical home in Westminster. Our unique approach to sustainable development will ultimately improve our region’s ability to thrive over time despite projected water shortages and climate change.
At Uplands, we believe new housing communities have an obligation to account for energy conservation measures and that it’s better to be driving change than it is to be fighting sustainability efforts.