Roxburgh selected for Master Plan in Bakersfield

We are excited to share that Roxburgh has been selected to market a new master plan in Bakersfield by the highly respected developer and homebuilder, Woodbridge Pacific Group (WPG).

The first mixed-use village will consist of some 800 homes designed for move-up, and luxury segments along with two age-restricted neighborhoods, a gated upscale apartment neighborhood and an assisted living/memory care facility.  A specialty shopping center is planned within walking distance of the new community.


The Bakersfield submarket is not new for us, as Roxburgh served as agency of record for Castle & Cooke’s Villages of Stockdale a few years back.

That said, the area’s economy and employment base has grown substantially. Today it is the fifth fastest growing (by percentage) economy in the country and leading indicators point to a strong and sustained real estate market.


Consumer research and design/planning meetings area underway.  Using the Roxburgh F.A.C.E. process, the community brand strategy is nearly complete.

WPG expects to tap local homebuilders for most of the new neighborhoods with formal discussions beginning later this year. The master planned village is expected to debut in late 2015.


Developing a great new place? Connect with us at at or (714) 556-4365.  The Roxburgh Agency is located in Costa Mesa, California – but we work on places in many locations.

Campers In Line For Brightwater Release

With 2012 and January 2013 real estate data coming in, we have been cautiously optimistic about what has been going on in the Southern California market. Foreclosures are down, prices are going up and inventory is low. This trifecta in our post Great Recession world should create demand, however even we weren’t prepared for what has been happening at Woodbridge Pacific Group’s Brightwater Huntington Beach this week.

Mountain House YouTube Video Campaign

We are happy to be working with the team behind Mountain House, a master-planned community east of Livermore, California that’s as special as the people who call it home. The best way to learn what it’s like living there is to experience it firsthand, but we wanted to help tell the story of Mountain House before potential buyers decided to visit.

Two YouTube video campaigns were created to share the narrative with as many people as possible. For the first, it was discovered that the early residents of Mountain House consider themselves to be pioneers and are bonded together in the shared experiences of living in this unique community. Called “Mountain House Moments,” the video series captures residents recalling memories and experiences that have made Mountain House home.

The second campaign, “Voices of Mountain House,” includes several videos that provide a kind of behind-the-scenes look at how various teams and entities have come together to execute the shared vision for the community. Key stakeholders such as new buyers, longtime residents, educators, builders and the developer talk about the thought and strategy behind Mountain House, from community planning, home design, education and access to nature and open spaces.

Check out a Voices of Mountain House video below. View more videos on the Mountain House YouTube channel HERE.

AIA Home Design Trends Survey

The American Institute of Architects recently came out with the results from its first quarter Home Design Trends Survey. Most notably, residential architects are indicating an improvement in overall business conditions and are seeing some stability developing in new construction. A bellwether for the homebuilding industry, business conditions at residential architecture firms improving is naturally encouraging news.

When it comes to design, in-home accessibility is the emerging trend; features like wider hallways, fewer steps and stairs, ramps and on-grade entrances intended to make entering/exiting and moving through the home easier are increasing in popularity. Flexible floorplans are also on the rise in addition to a growing preference for open space layouts over enclosed rooms. AIA findings are not surprising, given our aging Boomer population and a shift toward multigenerational housing.

Some builders are already addressing these trends. Shea SPACES and the Lennar NextGen home immediately come to mind as attempts to meet the needs of American households as their makeups shift and Green Room

Survey results also indicate an increased interest in outdoor living spaces. Maybe living in Southern California makes us take this for granted, but really, when have they ever been unpopular? Covered outdoor spaces and outdoor rooms are on the rise, and we see these design features as less of a trend and more of a key floorplan element in new home communities throughout Southern California.

Lets all hope for increased billings and some project backlog at residential architecture firms. Fingers crossed. To access the complete survey results,

Houzz – Great App For Home Design Enthusiasts

Houzz is a new app that we came across in this interview with interior designer, Jeff Lewis.  Houzz, an iPhone and iPad app, allows users to pull together their design ideas, inspirations, loves and likes and simply email those ideas (their ideabook) in a single link.  The app boasts that it is the largest database of design and decorating ideas with its more than 325,000 original photographs from more than 55,000 architects, interior designers, photographers, contractors and other design pros.

The app is very well organized and allows users to “move” through photos (as they would in their house or space) to find inspiration room by room (list is on the left hand side).   Another great feature is the ability to find professionals in your area based on your design aesthetic.

Download the app here:

Intriguing Urban Farming Projects

The idea of farming usually connotes living in the country, working with the land and getting your hands dirty, but new ways of “urban farming,” are bringing the farming lifestyle to cities, high-rises and other urban environments.

The UK, Japan and America have come up with some truly innovative ways for technology and farming to work together which will benefit everything from personal projects to multimillion-dollar innovations.


  • Postcardens is a tiny garden made out of recycled greeting cards.  Each “desk spaced” size Postcarden comes with cress seeds that grow in a few days and last about 2 weeks.
  • MyFarm is a real farm in Cambridgeshire, England that allows digital crowds to help decide how the farm runs its day -to-day operations.  “A group of 10,000 online “farmers” will then get to work with the farm manager and vote on the farm’s major decisions, all for an annual fee of $47.”  This is a way to blend education and the Internet.
  • Farm:Shop is creating a community of urban farmers who provide their own personal grown goods to the central Farm: Shop and then sell them.  The cool part of this project is the use of “aquaponics, ” which is hooking up a fish tank as the watering system.


  • Merry Project is a rooftop garden project for smaller herbs and produce.  This tiny gardens are housed in bottle caps and only $2.
  • Green Potato is a project that seeks out abandoned or wasted spaces and grows sweet potatoes on the roof.  The organization chose this crop because it is able to grow in harsher conditions (aka on a roof).
  • Pasona 02 is a project that converts old underground vaults into valuable green space.  Using light-emitting diodes, metal halide lamps and sodium vapor lamps, these vaults are now spaces that can grow rice, fruits and vegetables.

If you’re interested in what we are doing in the US and if there are any ideas that you can use, check out the full article and project descriptions here:

Hotels And Parking Lots ‘LEED(R)’ing the Way

The US Green Building Council (USGBC) for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED (R)) recently recongnized two Courtyard by Marriott hotels with the LEED stamp of approval.  Though these aren’t the first LEED (R) certified hotels, Starwood has a hip, eco-friendly Element chain, this is a huge milestone for the Marriott brand, which hopes to get the “green” stamp of approval for prototypes of the Courtyard, Fairfield Inn, Springhill Suites, Residence Inn and Towneplace Suites chains.  In fact, Marriott has about 50 hotels in the pipeline that have or will pursue LEED (R) certification, with 15 of them slated to open in late 2009 or early 2010.

Not only will the Courtyard hotels recoup the upfront costs of making their hotels LEED (R) certified in 12-24 months (through energy conservation), but according to the US Travel Association, environmentally conscious hotels have a competitive edge with consumers.  The two eco-friendly Courtyard by Marriott hotels are located in Portland, Oregon and Chevy Chase, MD.  The 256-room Courtyard in Portland draws its electricity from renewable sources such as wind and hydroelectric power, reducing energy consumption by 30%.  The hotel will also reduce water consumption by 26% (as compared to a non-LEED Courtyard) by installing dual-flushing toilets.  It also recycled more than 75% of waste created during construction and will reduce its carbon emissions by 25%.

The Chevy Chase Courtyard is even more incredible, to read about this Courtyard’s eco-conscious features, go to:

In addition to eco-friendly hotels, more and more parking garages are becoming green-minded.  With public transportation becoming a growing way to get around, more parking garages are going up in order to accommodate the mass transit community.  Designing a green garage is primarily about layout, by easing accessibility and minimizing the waiting time for people to leave the garage.  Technology is going to be the biggest key in these garages, as pay-on-foot kiosks will become increasing popular as will signs that alert drivers to vacant spots so that it cuts down on people needing to circle.  Some garages are even looking into systems that allow people to pay for their parking via their cell phones.  For more information about the current and future green parking lots, go to:

Want A Greener Home? Here Are 12 Great Green Appliances has done some digging and has provided a list of 12 Earth-friendly appliances that are actually green.  If you are in the market for appliances that not only save you money on your utilities, but that are actually better for the environment, then check these items out:

  1. Xeros Washing Machine – This new washer promises to clean clothes with just one cup of water and thousands of nylon beads.  The carbon-footprint of this prototype is 40% less than the current most efficient washing machine.
  2. Equator 375 Refrigerator – Not only is this fridge quieter than most, but it only uses $50 of electricity per year!
  3. Aeromatic Oven – This high-efficiency stand-alone oven bakes, grills, broils, fries, toasts, steams and roasts your smaller meals in the time it would take to microwave them, but uses 80% less energy.
  4. Bosch Evolution Plus Dishwasher – The Bosch Evolution 800 Plus is not only 160% more energy efficient than traditional models but it also has the capacity for 15 place settings.
  5. Tankless Hot Water Heater – The tankless systems can lower your costs and save you time, because your hot water is delivered instantaneously.
  6. AO Smith Vertex 100 – The Vertex 100 has a 90% better efficiency rating than anyone else on the market, which will provide you a 30% savings on your utility bills.
  7. Motion Sensor Lights – Though these have been around for quite a while, the Levion Decora 150 switch senses when a room is empty and turns the lights off for you.  Saves a lot of money on electricity and avoids fighting between parents and their kids.
  8. Toliet Lid Sink – When you flush the toliet this addition takes the clean water from the tank, through the spigot for hand washing, before actually flushing the toliet.  May sound a little gross, but is completely sanitary and saves your household water.
  9. Santerra Green Composting Toliets – This toliet/composter helps evaporate your ‘business,’ so that what is left can be turned into compost.  It promises to be odorless and save you water.
  10. Cool ‘n Save – This eco-friendl’ier’ air conditioner is helpful because it sucks the heat out of nearby air, therefore helping to lower your bills by circulating the cooler air through the house without having the unit on Artic temperatures.
  11. ShowerStart – The ShowerStart system slows hot water to a trickle once it hits 95 degrees, so while you are letting the water run to warm up before hopping in, this system takes the water wastefulness out of the quick errands before showering.
  12. Methane-powered golf cart – Although still in its experimental stages, this idea could help us save a lot of gas and money if we are going quickly around town.

For the full article, which explains the positives and negatives of most of these products, go to:


Pop-Up Stores Popping Up

Temporary stores have started to emerge as a solution for the cash-strapped brand.  With all the empty properties about, brokers and landlords are more willing to take some rent for a pop-up store, than leave the space empty waiting for a permanent tenant.  Brands are using these pop-up spaces as a way to create buzz, test new concepts and evaluate a new neighborhood or city they are looking to launch in.  With rents now affordable again, these shops are being views “as a logical, and even inexpensive, marketing tool.”

High-end brands like Hermes, Emilio Pucci and La Perla and have started to embrace the concept, as have Gap, Seven for all Mankind and Daffy’s.  One extremely successful example of a pop-up store was The New Jersey Division of Travel and Tourism which opened a shop on Broadway between 11th and 12th streets in Manhattan.  The temporary shop garnered nearly $1 million in media, between the 46 broadcast segments and 21 print and online placements they received.  They also had an average of 1,000 visitors go through the store each week and 500 pieces of collateral were handed out daily.  The bulk of the budget was spend on the $20,000 a month rent, but with the figures listed above, the efforts more than paid for themselves.

AdAge has provided a list of 5 things to consider before taking on a venture like this for your brand:

  1. Do your research – why is the space empty? Lack of traffic in the area? Some issue with the property?
  2. Don’t scrimp – make sure your budget keeps within the brand’s image, if you are a high end brand, you will need to spend a little more building out the space
  3. Get creative – as more brands start the pop-up store you will need to make sure your space still attracts attention
  4. Don’t expect a profit – the purpose of the pop-up store is to create buzz, not profits
  5. Take a chance – don’t be afraid of trying a new neighborhood, new design, new product or new marketing tactic.  Pop-ups are temporary so if your gamble doesn’t work, you haven’t boxed yourself in

For the full article, go to:


Even Real Estate Moves Ad Budget to Web

The recession has hit everyone hard, but as we all know the real estate industry has been one of the hardest hit (outside of the auto industry, of course).  So although newspapers and classifieds used to work to sell homes, this economy has not allowed those types of ads to be as effective as they were in years past.  Real estate companies and agents have had to get creative with their budgets, especially because Realogy Corp., parent company of Coldwell Banker, Sotheby’s International and Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate among others, spent 31.7% less on measured media in 2008.   The newspaper ads are still effective, but you get more bang for your buck with moving some of those dollars onto the web because the internet is a lot less expensive and more people are moving online to get their information.

Studies show that nearly 9 out of 10 home buyers used the internet to find information on property they were interested in.  The Sunday paper used to be the go-to source for information, but when you have sites like Zillow and Trulia, which pull together listings from a variety of brokerage firms, you can find much more detailed information, including photos in a short amount of time.

Realogy is one of the best at utilizing the internet.  In fact, the Realogy Company upped its internet spending 29% to $8.6 million.  Their executives and their brands are on Facebook and Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn.  They are not there just to be there, they know that their target demographic is participating on these sites and so that is where they need to be.  They can no longer rely on being a 3-line classified ad.

This is not a temporary shift for the real estate market.  The internet is where agents, real estate businesses and builders need to be, because that is where your clients are.

For more information from AdAge, go to: