Construction on more than 75 new single-family homes is underway at Home Town NRH, marking the first time in about seven years that a large tract of houses has been slated for the upscale subdivision.
The plans follow several housing developments under construction in the city, including the 192-house Cambridge subdivision off Rufe Snow Drive.
North Richland Hills is unusual in that it represents an older Fort Worth suburb that has attracted builders. About 15 percent of this city of 64,000 remains available for development, but that percentage is rapidly dropping.
The city’s central location to other cities, shopping and businesses have been a major draw, according a survey conducted last year of North Richland Hills residents.
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Houses are also more affordable than those in the Northeast Tarrant suburbs of Colleyville, Keller and Southlake.
“We re-started development because the market has rebounded, and consumers want upscale, urban, infill homes in a walkable, mixed-used neighborhood,” said Bill Gietema, co-founder of Hometown developer Arcadia Realty of Dallas.
In Home Town, which is just off Davis Boulevard, plans call for building 30 row houses that will range in size from 1,400 to 2,400 square feet and sell for between $180,000 and $220,000. They will typically feature two or three bedrooms and 2.5 to 3.5 bathrooms, Gietema said.
Another 19 “cottage style” houses will be built, ranging in size from 1,600 to 2,400 square feet and selling for between $240,000 and $280,000, Gietema wrote in an email. The houses will be built on 35-foot-wide lots, commonly referred to as zero lot lines, and will typically have two to three bedrooms and 2.5 to 3.5 bathrooms.
Another 27 “garden homes” are slated for the same area, across the street from Walker Creek Elementary School. They will range from 2,000 to 3,200 square feet and sell for between $270,000 and $340,000. They will have two to four bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms.
The average market value for a home in North Richland Hills is $162,483.
Construction began last summer, with the first homes expected to be available this spring. One or two houses have been built here and there in Home Town NRH, but this is the first large-scale, single-family development since 2006 or 2007, Gietema said.
When Home Town NRH broke ground 1999, the 330-acre neighborhood was touted as a new urbanism development that would provide a focal point for the city and its sometimes-disconnected subdivisions. Over the years, the city’s public library and the NRH Centre, the city’s recreation center, were built in the neighborhood. Dozens of businesses have located nearby on Boulevard 26 and Precinct Line Road.
The upscale neighborhood of more than 400 houses helped lure other developers to North Richland Hills.
Developer Scott Sandlin of Sandlin Homes of Fort Worth is building 192 houses on what will be the 52-acre Cambridge subdivision. Homes should be for sale in the early part of next year. Prices will start at about $200,000 to $300,000, depending on the neighborhood, he said. He estimated that the entire project off Rufe Snow Drive and Holiday Lane will take about four years to complete.
Most housing construction involves smaller subdivisions, such as the 43-lot addition to the Thornbridge subdivision in the northern part of the city on Precinct Line Road.
At Home Town, Arcadia still has another three or four more phases planned.