The Crown Perspective
If any company is particularly well qualified to meet the unique challenges of community master planning, it is Crown Community Development. Those qualifications begin with the organization’s status as one of the Henry Crown Companies.
Founded in 1919 as a family-owned building material business, The Henry Crown Companies grew to become one of the nation’s largest privately held business organizations and a major force in land development throughout the U.S. The organization’s diverse interests range from large-scale office buildings such as Rockefeller Center in New York City, to Aspen Ski Company and the Ojai Resort in Ojai California. Additionally, the Crown family holds significant stock positions and board memberships in General Dynamics, JP Morgan Chase, Sara Lee, and Hilton Hotels, as well as investment holdings in the New York Yankees and Chicago Bulls.
These substantial financial resources, coupled with the flexibility of private ownership, provide the ideal backing for Crown Community Development. The company was founded in 1973 to invest in, and later to manage, a 3,500-acre expanse of property in Aurora, Illinois on the western edge of suburban Chicago. Today, the acreage is home to five large-scale residential communities, each ranging from 500 to 700 acres, and boasting a variety of outstanding recreational attractions, including golf courses, sport programs, athletic fields, bike trails, community clubhouses and swimming pools. Several hundred acres are also dedicated to large and small-scale retail developments, many within easy walking distance of residential neighborhoods.
The success of the Aurora property provided a cornerstone for Aurora’s emergence as one of the nation’s premier areas to live and work. It also provided Crown Community Development with a singular perspective on the mission and mechanics of master planning, which has led to significant participation in major developments from Florida’s Gulf Coast to Chicago’s North Shore. More importantly, it has allowed the company to evolve and perfect one of the most thorough and effective approaches to community master planning in the country today.