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Carl M. Freeman Companies receives Developer Award by Sussex Conservation District

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LEWES – Carl M. Freeman Companies was honored with the 2024 Developer Award by the Sussex Conservation District for their environmentally conscious design planning of Tower Hill in Lewes, Delaware. Tower Hill is the first community in the area to begin meadow installation and seeding during construction phase at this scale. Carl M. Freeman Companies estimates seeding nearly 30 acres of native wildflowers and grasses which is approximately half of the entire open space within the community.The Sussex Conservation District recognized Carl M. Freeman with the Developer Award for their environmentally conscious design

The project was a state-wide collaboration with the Sussex Conservation District and the University of Delaware. Native meadows contribute to improved water quality by acting as natural filters, stabilizing soil, controlling nutrient levels, supporting biodiversity, reducing runoff, and providing various other ecosystem services. Maintaining and restoring native meadows can be an effective strategy for enhancing water quality in both urban and rural landscapes.

“We are proud to be the first developer in Sussex County to implement native plantings and wildflower meadows in a large portion of our land design. As a developer, we believe smart development and environmental stewardship can coexist and positively impact future generations in the communities we build.” Michelle Freeman, CEO of Carl M. Freeman Companies, said.

The Institute at Tower Hill offers classes and learning opportunities on the benefits of native meadows and pollinators in the clubhouse. It’s not a requirement by the Delaware Sediment and Stormwater Regulation (DSSR) to reduce the amount of turfgrasses in new development. However, Carl. M. Freeman Companies recognized the numerous benefits of native grasses and plants in comparison to turfgrass, and they have committed to changing the design methods when it comes to open spaces, starting with Tower Hill.

“Tower Hill is an example of thoughtful and purposeful conservation. The Freeman Companies are setting the bar high, by being the first to support the local ecosystem and improve water quality by incorporating native plants, meadows and buffers into the open space and stormwater design,” Jessica Watson, sediment and stormwater program manager at Sussex Conservation District, said. “Meadows act like a sponge, absorbing stormwater runoff, cleaning water before it enters local waterways; but meadows also benefit the birds, bees and butterflies we all love and need. We are confident this project will become a model for other communities in Sussex County and the state.”

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