Pulte will complete Civano without neighborhood centers
ROBERT STEUTEVILLE    MAR. 1, 2004
Pulte Homes, the nation’s largest residential builder, paid $8.57 million in early January to purchase approximately 480 acres in Civano, a development on the southeast fringe of Tucson that combines principles of New Urbanism and environmental sustainability. The Federal National Mortgage Agency (Fannie Mae) sold the land to Pulte, which will build Civano’s final two neighborhoods. The Arizona Daily Star reported that Fannie Mae, an original investor in the 818-acre development, took over the project in 1998 and had been trying to sell it for three years. Civano Neighbors, a neighborhood association, negotiated with Pulte over changes the company wanted in the master plan. At the association’s insistence, no more than one-third of Pulte’s houses may be built with garages and driveways facing the street. However, the company will not build centers containing restaurants and shops in its two neighborhoods. Some residents were upset at that, since it means fewer services within easy walking or biking distance of residents. Pulte intends to build about 1,500 houses in Civano, and has agreed to offer five percent of available lots to builders using innovative techniques such as rammed-earth or straw bale construction. Fannie Mae will continue to develop lots in Civano’s first neighborhood, where about 350 of 500 houses planned have been built. In its January issue, Sunset magazine named Civano the “Best New Community” in its annual survey of best places to live.