January 07, 2022

Babcock Ranch Water Utilities recognized as a leader in water reuse

By: Vicki Parsons - IT

Gravina Smith Matte & Arnold
Special to Naples Daily News

Babcock Ranch Water Utilities was recently recognized by Water Resources Utility of the Future Today for innovative and forward-thinking practices in water reuse. The program honors water and wastewater treatment utilities leading the way in establishing sustainable, resilient and livable communities.

Operated by Town & Country Utilities, BRWU serves Babcock Ranch, America’s first solar-powered town located just northeast of Fort Myers on Babcock Ranch Road/State Road 31.

“Conserving water, our most precious natural resource, is a cornerstone of Babcock Ranch and our responsibility as environmental stewards,” said Syd Kitson, chairman and CEO of Kitson & Partners, the developer of Babcock Ranch. “Our utilities were designed from the ground up to minimize water consumption and reuse water for 100 percent of our irrigation needs. When a panel of our peers and major organizations like those behind the Water Resources Utility of the Future program can single us out as a leader, we know we are fulfilling our obligations to responsible, sustainable development.”

The Water Resources Utility of the Future Today concept was devised in 2013 to promote existing and emerging opportunities and motivate utilities to transform from traditional wastewater treatment systems to community-based recovery centers. Recipients are determined by a panel of judges comprised of utility managers and executives who consider a utility’s value-added services to their communities with an emphasis on community engagement, watershed stewardship and recovery of resources such as water, energy and nutrients. As a recipient, BRWU/TCU also serves as a role model, sharing practices and learning experiences to benefit other utilities in achieving more efficient operations, enhanced and long-term sustainability.

BRWU/TCU has also received the 2019 David W. York Award honoring outstanding water reuse projects in Florida; the 2019 Earle B. Phelps Award recognizing wastewater treatment facilities maintaining the highest removal of pollutants in transforming wastewater into reusable water for irrigation; and the Department of Environmental Protection’s 2018 Domestic Plant Operations Excellence Award for Drinking Water recognizing outstanding treatment water and wastewater plant operations, maintenance and compliance.

Babcock Ranch was created by Kitson & Partners with respect for the natural environment and the philosophy that smart growth and sustainability work hand in hand. Half of the town’s footprint is set aside as greenways, parks and expansive lakes, providing recreation and scenic backdrops for Babcock Ranch’s homes and the Founder’s Square downtown district. Built to Florida Green Building Coalition standards, homes emphasize energy and water conservation and offer a full gig of fiber-optic connectivity.

Ranked as Southwest Florida’s top master-planned community based on Metrostudy data for single-family home annual starts in Charlotte, Lee and Collier counties, Babcock Ranch was also named 2020 Master-Planned Community of the Year by the Lee Building Industry Association. The community also recently surpassed 1,500 homes sold and was named to the No. 25 position in the country’s 50 top-selling master-planned communities of 2021 by RCLCO Real Estate Advisors and was recognized on John Burns Real Estate Consulting’s 2020 list of the country’s 50 top-selling master-planned communities.

Babcock Ranch offers homes from seven homebuilders in seven neighborhoods, with additional builders and newly introduced neighborhoods coming soon. With more than 50 home design options ranging from 1,120 to over 4,000 square feet, homes in Babcock Ranch appeal to young millennials, families, empty nesters and retirees alike, with prices ranging from the low $200,000s to over $1.5 million.

Within Babcock Ranch’s welcoming neighborhoods, more than two dozen model and quick-delivery homes are now open or under construction by AR Homes by Arthur Rutenberg, Divco Custom Homes, Florida Lifestyle Homes, Lennar, Meritage Homes, Pulte Homes and WCI.

For more information about Southwest Florida’s new hometown, visit the Woodlea Hall Discovery Center at 42850 Crescent Loop in Babcock Ranch, call 877-709-6620, or visit