St. Joe Company
Project Status:
Partially built
Project Overview:
• Master plan and landscape architecture services for Gulf Coast resort community
• Design guidelines based on traditional architectural rhythms of coastal towns
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Walton County, Florida
The 1,400-home community of WaterSound, located along Florida’s Gulf Coast, sought a Pattern Book to ensure that development followed the traditional architectural rhythms of coastal towns in order to create a distinct sense of character through texture, scale, materials, and color. The Pattern Book was developed to guide the design and construction of new homes in the community, with the goal of creating a cohesive and authentic sense of place that reflects the unique character of the Gulf Coast.

The Pattern Book draws on historic maritime influences to lay out guidelines for new homes that are reflective of modern sensibilities, yet respectful of traditional precedents. The book emphasizes the importance of traditional town planning principles, such as walkable blocks, interesting building juxtapositions, neighborhood common areas, and a carefully chosen visual palette, in order to create a community that is both livable and visually appealing.

In addition to architectural guidelines, the Pattern Book also includes detailed information on lot types for each of the distinct districts within the community, in order to create appropriate relationships between buildings and the street through careful placement and execution of garages, porches, and other elements. Architectural details are shown graphically through a variety of means including sketches, photographs, and narrative, to guide the homebuilder toward the WaterSound design philosophy.

The combination of architectural guidelines, and landscape guidelines that govern plantings, fences, and gardens, help form the basis for the distinct character of the WaterSound community that recalls an earlier time, yet is sensitive to current trends. The Pattern Book provides a comprehensive framework for the development of the community and serves as a valuable resource for builders, architects, and homeowners. The pattern book also includes guidance on creating a sense of community and promoting walkability and connectivity through streetscape design, sidewalks, and bike paths, with landscape elements such as trees and parkways. The overall goal of the pattern book is to create a unique and authentic sense of place, and to ensure that the WaterSound community is a distinctive and livable coastal town that residents are proud to call home.