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DR Horton - Smaller Houses Threaten Community Property Values
Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Residents irked by developer's requests
Requested changes to a housing development in Vacaville aren't sitting well with residents already living in the neighborhood. As a response to the declining housing market, developer D.R. Horton asked that the Planning Commission allow it to add a less expensive model to the Southtown development next to more expensive houses already built and sold...The commission did not reach a decision before press time, however, numerous homeowners spoke out against the proposal. "There are a lot of differences between the homes," explained Dan Johnson, a homeowner in the Southtown development. "It changes the character and the flavor of the neighborhood." ...D.R. Horton has already built Carrington and Barrington models, larger houses that price at more than half a million dollars. The Chelsea model, smaller and less expensive would sit next to the larger homes.

Residents irked by developer's requests
By Melissa Murphy/ This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
11-19-08

 Requested changes to a housing development in Vacaville aren't sitting well with residents already living in the neighborhood.

As a response to the declining housing market, developer D.R. Horton asked that the Planning Commission allow it to add a less expensive model to the Southtown development next to more expensive houses already built and sold.

"We're trying to invigorate the project by adapting to the buyer and the market," said Vince Fletcher, representing D.R. Horton. "These are difficult economic times."

The commission did not reach a decision before press time, however, numerous homeowners spoke out against the proposal.

"There are a lot of differences between the homes," explained Dan Johnson, a homeowner in the Southtown development. "It changes the character and the flavor of the neighborhood."

The Southtown project area sits at the southern edge of the city, bound by Nut Tree Road on the west, Leisure Town Road on the east, and immediately to the south of the Alamo Place, Villages East and Heritage Place neighborhoods.

D.R. Horton, according to a staff report, believes that the larger range in house plan choices will allow the project to appeal to a broader segment of the new home market.

D.R. Horton has already built Carrington and Barrington models, larger houses that price at more than half a million dollars. The Chelsea model, smaller and less expensive would sit next to the larger homes.

The neighborhood representatives agreed to compromise, for the developer to build a limited number of the Chelsea model in one specific area of Southtown Phase 1, in turn the developer would promise in writing to not ask for additional changes to the subdivision models.

"We fear that this is not the final piece," Johnson said. "We bought into the promise of the neighborhood."

Fletcher said that after discussing the situation with the company, unfortunately he was not able to come up with a letter.

He explained that, at this time the developer does not foresee coming back to the commission for additional changes.

D.R. Horton is looking to add 17 less expensive homes next to each other in the neighborhood rather than decreasing the price of the more expensive homes.

Some neighbors said that the compromise to allow the 17 homes was more like an ultimatum.

"This is the lesser of two evils," said Tracy Curtis-Nagore, adding that the developer first proposed dispersing the Chelsea model in between the Barrington and Carrington models. "If he does come back for more changes, we will fight it."

Jackie Lopez, who has lived in Vacaville her entire life, said that she moved to the Southtown development to get away from cookie cutter subdivisions.

"We've all worked hard to live here," she said. "This would take away from that."

http://www.tradingmarkets.com/.site/news/Stock%20News/2036541/

 
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Reckless Endangerment
BY: GRETCHEN MORGENSON
and JOSHUA ROSNER

Outsized Ambition, Greed and
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