Eight builders raising houses in Carolina Park’s custom Riverside neighborhood fashion distinct imprints on their own. But many are going further by turning to local architects and designers for finer points.

According to marketers, the specialists bring fresh perspectives, innovative thinking and a true Charleston flavor to the community’s Lowcountry-inspired homes.

“It’s been our belief that something as simple as good quality architecture can lead to an improved quality of life. Several of our builders have teamed with some incredibly talented local architects and the results have really been remarkable,” says Brian Keels, a representative for Carolina Park.

Keels cites a number of cases.

For instance, Charleston architect Laura Altman of LFA Architecture partners with custom builder The Burton Co. She has designed several homes in Riverside so far and believes that there are real advantages to having local architects involved in the project, Carolina Park promoters say.

“Living in Charleston and being surrounded by its historical architecture every day influences a lot of my own work,” Altman says. “Studying historic homes built centuries ago, studying the details and aesthetics and then bringing those into new designs that combine those traditional aspects with contemporary livability is a challenge I really enjoy.”

Riverside’s known for larger private lots and natural settings, providing great chances for constructors to build detailed and high-quality homes.

“We like to bring in a lot of traditional touches — low overhangs, wide front porches, screened rear porches — that work to connect the indoors and the outdoors,” says Sabrina Cochran of SLC Architect, who has worked on designs for JacksonBuilt homes. “That’s always been a big part of Lowcountry design. So, while we make each home distinctly different, we also want to make sure every home feels welcoming, inviting and approachable.”

According to Carolina Park, the opportunity to create showpiece homes is keeping all eight builders busy and talented architects excited.

“One of the things I personally love most about Carolina Park is that it’s ‘pedestrian-friendly,’” Altman says. “With the ample sidewalks, trails and the wide front porches, it fosters a connected, neighborly feel and a real sense of community you just don’t find in many places.”

Custom home architects and designers aren’t always brought in to design homes within large master planned communities, but Riverside is an exception, backers say.

“It’s really gratifying to work on these homes,” says Chris Caponigro, a residential designer in Charleston who has partnered with Structures Building Co. “Riverside is an opportunity to create quality designs and then see them executed at the highest level.”

Set on 1,700 acres, Carolina Park edges the Wando River, encompasses ponds and open spaces, displays miles of hiking and biking paths and takes in more than 230 acres of natural preserve.

“Riverside is an exception to a lot of rules,” Cochran says. “There is such a high level of quality for a neighborhood of its size — high quality construction, lots of attention to detail, a lot of variety in the styles and floor plans.”

Carolina Park is located off U.S. Highway 17 in Mount Pleasant and takes in Wando High School and Roper St. Francis Mount Pleasant Hospital. Featuring townhomes, cottages, single-family houses and custom homes from nine top builders, Carolina Park Village properties start in the $300,000s while residences in Riverside range from the $500,000s to more than $1 million.

“Often times it’s hard to put your finger on what it is about a place that makes it special, but it’s the culmination of all the little details that in the end help to create something extraordinary,” Keels says. “There’s no question that local architects have played an instrumental role.”

For more, contact the Carolina Park sales center at 843-654-5083 or visit www.CarolinaPark.com.

Reach Jim Parker at 843-937-5542 or jparker@postandcourier.com.