Housing projects win approval

03/17/2014 10:39 PM

03/17/2014 10:40 PM

Two massive proposed developments totaling nearly 700 acres for houses, apartments and businesses won the support of the Mansfield City Council on Monday.

North Rock Real Estate, which owns 870 acres north of the intersection of U.S. 287 and Texas 360 in south Mansfield, plans to break ground in late summer or early fall on its initial phases -- a 140-acre, 442-home development that would include an important east-west boulevard connecting the two highways.

Eventually the South Pointe development would extend to the U.S. 287-Texas 360 juncture and include large retail shopping areas.

The current project will require $11.5 million worth of infrastructure, including construction of the main thoroughfare, Lone Star Parkway, and the landscaping, parks and lavish entrances at Texas 360 and U.S. 287.

About $5 million of that cost will come from a special taxing district the city set up in 2007 to encourage development in the mostly vacant, 2,600-acre triangle known as The Reserve, bounded by the two highways and East Broad Street on the north.

David Branch, North Rock's director of land development, said the firm has sold the Mansfield school district 89 acres for four future school sites.

“We want to get started as soon as we can,” Branch said. “We feel the timing is very exciting for the opportunity for strong growth down here.”

The council had already approved the zoning but wanted the developers to make changes to the site plan, including expanding a section of large lots at the main entrance at Texas 360 that would accommodate more custom homes.

The council approved the tweaked plan 5-0, with two members absent.

Also, the council gave preliminary approval to zoning changes for a proposed 555-acre development of residential and retail-commercial uses, mostly south of FM 917 and west of South Main Street. The plan, which still needs two more favorable council votes for final approval, includes about 1,200 homes and about 40 acres of commercial development.

Its a project of longtime Mansfield developers Bobby McCaslin, his son Bob McCaslin and daughter Kim McCaslin-Schlieker, which they have named M3 Ranch. An adjoining 266 acres awaits later development.

Mayor David Cook adjourned the meeting and praised the two development teams for their quality projects, which eventually would total more than 1,600 acres,

“It's a historic night in Mansfield,” Cook said. “Thank you guys for the investments you're making ... Mansfield is open for business.”

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