In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, a new community was needed in Baton Rouge to accommodate people relocating from New Orleans. Mayeux Ranch—a 3,000 acre privately-owned cattle ranch eight miles south of Baton Rouge—was an ideal site upon which to plan and develop. Sasaki developed the master plan for this new, mixed-use community based on the principles of urbanism and environmental, social, and economic sustainability.
Inspired by both the property's agricultural patterns and ecologically rich riparian habitats, the master plan is based on a strong, green framework. The plan supports a high-density urban plan while ensuring the protection and restoration of the ranch's natural resources. The plan proposes up to 36 million square feet of development—including 30,000 residential units—while dedicating approximately 50% of the property to recreational open space and restored wildlife habitats.
The first phase of development will consist of a residential community on about 800 acres of property located to the south of Bayou Paul. The framework for these acres is centered on the retention of the expansive north-south-oriented Arpent Green and supported by a series of east-west-oriented Canal Parks, which evoke the historic field and drainage channel layout of the property. The residential uses are complemented by environmental, recreational, and aesthetic amenities, including wetland preserves and wildlife habitat corridors, public charter schools, commercial and neighborhood retail facilities, a civic center with public plaza, and community greens integrated into a stormwater management strategy. Civic and commercial uses exist at the center of the open space framework, creating a dynamic walkable community. The richness of the bayou is integrated into the everyday experience of residents.