In the late 1800s the township of Brighton, along what is now Folsom Boulevard and Power Inn Road, was bustling with a racetrack, pony express stop and the distinguished (if unrecognized) title of Sacramento’s first suburb.
But its heyday was short-lived. By the 1900s Brighton was little more than a stopping place. Now, however, as the modern transformation of the Power Inn area continues, Brighton is about to be reborn into a 4,000-acre master-planned community with 10,000 homes.
Moreover, its transformation may redefine sustainable development.
New Brighton’s sustainability is a commitment to seven interconnected elements: stewardship, place, nature, design, prosperity, wellness and education.
There’s also a commitment to embrace the area’s rich history of family farming.
“We’ve planned to restore that tradition by developing working urban farms right in the heart of the community,” says Randy Sater, president with Stonebridge Properties, a subsidiary of Teichert Land Co.
The first 250 acres of New Brighton are in the master planning and entitlement stage. This first phase includes office, commercial and residential space as well as parks, storm water management and transportation-oriented design.
On paper New Brighton is a promising example of how to transform and knit industrial properties back into their communities. In principle, it’s much more than that.
“Sustainable development is often discussed in terms of conservation, but it really should ensure the long-term wellness of the community, the economy and the environment,” Sater says. “Ultimately, we’re looking at sustainability that focuses on people.”