May 10, 2016

Construction begins on solar town of Babcock Ranch

By: Vicki Parsons - IT

Posted: Apr 22, 2016 6:58 PM EDT

Updated: Apr 22, 2016 7:00 PM EDT

Construction begins on solar town of Babcock Ranch (video)

It’s been almost a decade since the town of Babcock Ranch, stretching across the line of Lee and Charlotte counties, has been in the works.

On Friday, the renderings for the 17,603 acres of land were unveiled, and 450 of those acres will be dedicated to housing solar panels.

According to Syd Kitson, CEO and Chairman of Kitson and Partners, 90 percent of Babcock Ranch will be permanent preservation.

“We wanted to prove that preservation in a new town could work hand in hand,” Kitson said.

The other 10 percent will be made up of houses, a school system, medical building and a park.

“Total for the community is gonna be 19,500. We’re not building a neighborhood; we’re building a town and this is just the start of how you birth a town,” said Lisa Hall with Babcock Ranch.

More than 600 people showed up to the unveiling. Many of the people attending were future business owners and builders.

“We drove up here and they gave us a tour and there was something different about here than any other place I’ve seen,” said Ken Fox, the owner of Ken Fox Developers.

As early as next year, the first residents of Babcock are projected to move in.

“As you can see here behind me, all the work has started and this town is becoming a reality, so I’m very, very thankful,” Kitson said.