WILMINGTON — The Lower Cape Fear Stewardship Development Coalition, a regional nonprofit organization focused on protecting natural resources, today presented its top award to the N.C. Coastal Federation.
The coalition’s Outstanding Stewardship Award was presented to the federation during a luncheon at the Terraces on Sir Tyler event center in Wilmington. The award recognized the federation’s approach to renovating a 1940s-era beach cottage as its office. It’s now known as the Fred and Alice Stanback Coastal Education Center in Wrightsville Beach.
Former town mayor Robert O’Quinn his wife, Catherine, and their family had owned the cottage for more than 40 years. The O’Quinns sold the cottage to neighbors Debbie and Mark Mitchell, who had plans to demolish the structure, but instead donated it to the federation in 2012. The structure was moved by barge from the Harbor Island area of Wrightsville Beach to its current location in the town’s historic square, near the Wrightsville Beach Museum of History and the town’s visitors center.
Federation officials said the opportunity to preserve an old coastal home was a fitting move for the nonprofit organization, which works to preserve and restore the N.C. coast.
The center provides examples of how to control polluted stormwater, featuring rain gardens, a cistern and pervious pavement. Other features include rain barrels to capture stormwater, an underground water-retention trench, low-flow toilets and energy-efficient lighting. Guides are on site for tours and advice on low-impact development techniques.
The Lower Cape Fear Stewardship Development Awards program, now in its 10th year, recognizes residential, commercial and public development projects in Brunswick, Pender and New Hanover counties that demonstrate outstanding environmental stewardship through the protection, conservation, improvement and awareness of natural resources.
Other awards recognized:
- The New Hanover County building at 320 Chestnut St. in Wilmington
- The Demarest Landing subdivision in Ogden
- Live Oak Bank II in Wilmington
- Moores Creek National Battlefield in Pender County
- New Hanover County Cape Fear Museum Park
- The University of North Carolina at Wilmington Student Recreation Center and UNCW Seahawk Crossing
- Compass Pointe in Leland
- Brunswick County Habitat for Humanity
- Scott Stewart, a real estate agent in Wilmington