Transforming the Desolate
into the Desirable.
A few years ago – when this 27-acre parcel in Napa, California was an RV park for nearly 100 vehicles, boat storage, and a large on-site sewage treatment facility – it was hard to imagine this site ever achieving environmental harmony with the vineyards just beyond its borders.
The Carneros Inn has achieved the improbable: the rebirth of the site as an agrarian village that weaves resort-oriented uses and thoughtful landscape design into an urbanism that treads lightly on the land.
Graves [Napa County Planning Commissioner] credits the diplomatic skills of Rogal and his deep appreciation for landscape and history for pushing the Inn through to completion.
A resort-and-luxury-home hybrid with Old World simplicity and modern ingenuity.
The Carneros Inn takes its design cues from its surroundings…the structures balance a sense of neighborliness…with intimacy…Rogal demanded everything be infused with authenticity.
Keith Rogal, the steadfast visionary behind the Carneros Inn is responsible for bringing the first new resort to be approved in 20 years to the Napa Valley…Rogal has invited the tough questions and delivered detailed answers.
The Carneros Inn is a totally unique approach to the five-star resort – an approach with the community at its heart.
The proposed Napa Pipe development is the best way to meet Napa County’s housing needs, shorten local commute times, and reuse this contaminated site.
Today’s vote represents a clear signal for many that the half-billion-dollar development will now go forward … The proposal reflects the recommendations last year by the county’s Planning Commission, which drew increased public support for the region’s largest project in recent memory.
The site is an eerie monument to heavy industry: a gaunt 115-foot-tall crane rises above four weedy dry docks, near long metal sheds where as many as 2,500 workers assembled salvage ships during World War II.
The new vision takes that juxtaposition – industrial relics and natural ease – and adds a self-contained, mixed income housing district.
We can build housing on farmland and open space, or we can transform a piece of long-abandoned land into a flourishing, sustainable neighborhood 15 minutes from downtown Napa.
The heart of the enclave would be a riverfront plaza embracing the dry docks and framed with three-story townhouses, some with restaurants or small shops along the plaza. From there, blocks of housing would march back and step up along a grid of streets.
We think the choice is clear.
Supervisors vote to approve Napa Pipe project…The vote was unanimous…
Before winemaker Robert Mondavi brought his vision for [Copia], a wine, food and arts center, you would have been hard pressed to find a wine-tasting room or high-end restaurant in the downtown area…Shuttered since 2008, Copia’s lasting legacy is that it helped transform the city into a viable tourist destination.
…Copia failed. Now a decade later, it is abandoned…it is now, sadly, a $70 million white elephant…Someday, hopefully soon, Copia will find a new path and purpose.
As 2011 ended … came the even more promising news that ACA Financial Guaranty Corp., which owns Copia, has created a partnership with the Napa-based Rogal + Associates… With Keith Rogal leading the effort… one can be sure that the project will combine imagination and inspiration with tenacity, and practicality.
For a new Napa business to be wholly successful, it needs to appeal to both tourists and local residents… Rogal + Associates appreciates this need, which is why it has solicited the advice of Napans in helping to shape what Copia becomes…It is a rare thing for a private developer to embrace public input in such an open way. We applaud the community outreach.
Rogal is approaching the troubled property from a new perspective. Rather than an isolated island on the east side of the river, he’s trying to build a neighborhood.
Ironically, the property’s renaissance – if and when it happens – could have a more positive impact on Napa Valley’s gateway town than the ambitious museum ever did.
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Rogal Projects

These projects involve the transformation of abandoned, blighted, or contaminated lands, in environmentally sensitive and visible locations. By recycling neglected or obsolescent sites into vibrant, walkable, beautifully-designed mixed-use places, we enjoy the satisfaction of creating exceptional value for our partners, and for our community.

Keith Rogal

Keith Rogal was the founder of The Carneros Inn in Napa, California; is managing partner of the Napa Pipe mixed-use development project; and is directing the reuse and development planning for the former Copia property in Napa’s Oxbow District.

Keith conceived of the Carneros Inn project in 1997 and managed all aspects of its development, from initial land assembly through its operational launch and marketplace acceptance as a distinctive and highly regarded luxury resort. At Napa Pipe, he identified the investment opportunity and has directed the project from its inception. His responsibilities have included management of all site planning and design, engineering, environmental analysis, and public hearing and community outreach efforts. His role with the redevelopment of the Copia property is similar, although in that case the work performed is on behalf of a third-party institution, rather than as a principal investor-manager. He has also led other long-term development or advisory efforts on behalf of public agencies, such as Miami-Dade County, and large landowners, including the Hearst Corporation.

Keith’s professional activities have focused exclusively on the creative reuse of previously developed sites. His work is guided by the principles of the Charter of the Congress of New Urbanism, to which he is a signatory, and was shaped by his upbringing in the family’s international group travel business. That fortunate family experience allowed him the opportunity to experience and appreciate the attributes of beautiful and distinctive places throughout the world; places which over time had established, encouraged and enhanced their special character.

Keith was raised in New England, graduated Magna Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in History and Literature from Harvard, and earned a master’s degree from the Yale School of Management, before becoming a Californian. He is a resident of Napa.

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Partners

Rogal Projects are inevitably complex undertakings, which require outstanding teamwork, drawing on first-rate colleagues and consultants with diverse sets of skills, some of whom are listed here:

credits
  • Filmmaker: Sara Nesson
  • Photography: Art Gray, Mark Hundley, Jason Henry, Kali Stamp, Carol Penn-Romine
  • © Keith Rogal
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The Carneros Inn

The Carneros Inn is a mixed-use resort hotel, comprised of approximately 140 individual buildings on 27 acres, in Napa, California. When first identified as a potential development site by Rogal, it was three separate and deteriorating properties containing a blighted mobile home park and a 500 space RV/boat storage yard. The 7-year development process included substantial community input and incorporated a wide range of environmentally progressive tools and techniques. Within a short time after its opening, it had garnered top marks in the major travel magazines and received favorable mention in more than 200 articles. Its room rates, home prices, and customer loyalty soared to among the highest in the market, and it received architectural awards never before granted to a hotel development.

27Acres
96Hotel Cottages
3Restaurants
$3.5 millionLocal Taxes Generated Annually
200+Permanent Jobs
24/17Whole Ownership/ Fractional Ownership Residences

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Awards

  • National Honor Award for Urban and Regional Design (2006)American Institute of Architects
  • Charter Award of Excellence (2007)Congress for the New Urbanism
  • Housing Awards for Production Homes (2008)American Institute of Architects
  • "Best in American Living" award (2004)Professional Builder Magazine
  • “Gold List: World’s Best Places to Stay” Conde Nast Traveler
  • “Readers Choice Awards: Top 100 Best in the World” Conde Nast Traveler
  • “Best Hotels in the World” Travel & Leisure’s
  • “Hotels We Love: Authentic, Memorable, Sustainable” National Geographic

Napa Pipe

When the riverfront industrial property known as Napa Pipe came up for sale in 2005, it represented the largest piece of land in Napa County with potential for residential mixed-use development. Rogal + Walsh + Mol along with financial partner Farallon Capital Management purchased the property, and crafted a reuse plan for this centrally-located brownfield site. After a community outreach and discussion process unprecedented in Napa history, the County’s General Plan was amended to permit the creation of a wholly new type of neighborhood on this site: a compact, walkable, urban neighborhood, with great streets, parks and public amenities, expressly designed for the needs and desires of today’s smaller households of all ages and incomes. The plan was recognized by the US Green Building Council as LEED-Gold and will, when complete, likely be the largest single-project investment ever made in the County of Napa.

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168Acres
755Market-Rate Housing Units
190Affordable Housing
150Hotel Suites
150Senior Housing Units
40,000 ft²Retail and Restaurants
175,000 ft²Office and Light Industry
154,000 ft²Costco

Copia

Copia was a large, multi-use museum complex created by the Mondavis and other leaders in the Napa Valley as a showcase for the region’s wine, food and arts. Although the concept proved financially unsustainable, the enormity of the investment, the prominence of its sponsors, and the centrality of its site made it a catalyst for positive change throughout the City of Napa. After a lengthy and complicated bankruptcy proceeding, the Copia property is now controlled by bond insurer ACA Financial Guaranty, who engaged Rogal to lead a reuse and development plan. The site, in Downtown’s “Oxbow District” is an exceptional one, flanking First Street, and surrounded by the Napa River on three sides. It represents the largest potential reuse site under consideration today in the City of Napa.

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17Acres
80,000 ft²Existing Building Size
12Restaurants with Gardens on-site
$78 millionPrincipal amount of Copia Bonds issued
Proposed new uses:Boutique Hotel, Multi-Family Housing, Retail, Restaurants, Theatre, Riverfront Parks, Culinary Gardens and Public Square.