Construction on the 9000 Hoyt Street Subdivision will happen in three phases. The first phase has multiple roles in the further development of this project. The soon to be completed buildings will test the housing market in this area and act as model homes for the remaining unbuilt houses.
The project developer, Todd Spencer, adopted the phased approach as a reaction to the pandemic. “We were a little nervous with COVID, and thought let’s just do three.” Said Spencer. Phased construction is a safe economic choice, allowing the sale of the first three buildings to help finance the remaining development.
The three houses in phase-one will be on the market before the end of summer. They should sell quickly based on the current market. Like most new homes, the builder selected all finishes in the house. Buyers looking to style a new home to their tastes could opt for one of the subdivisions unbuilt units instead. Buyers of those units can customized flooring, lighting, bathroom fixtures, countertops, and kitchen cabinetry.
The next phase of construction will add four houses along the top of the retaining wall that runs along NE Irving Street. Those houses will have unobstructed views looking north. The final phase will add the two duplex buildings across the private road from the first three buildings. All the buildings, except for the front-most house, will share similar floor plans.
Every unit has 9-foot ceilings, three-panel doors, and each bedroom is a master bedroom with an ensuite. Outdoor decks are accessed through giant glass sliding doors and have natural gas hookups for grills, avoiding the need for propane tanks. Garages come pre-wired for electric car charging. Recessed-can lighting throughout the home keeps the ceiling line clean and unobstructed. Pendant lights over the kitchen island maintain minimal separation between the open floorplan while defining independent spaces. The kitchens use backsplash windows between the upper and lower cabinets, creating a modern design with natural light.
Hardie board, stucco panels, and vertical cedar work together to form the siding on the houses. Spencer selected mixed cladding and a varied color scheme to make these buildings project the modern design within the building. That design ethic incorporates some tradition with other bold choices. This subdivision’s style offers something different than what is immediately around the area and may attract buyers that generally would look closer to the central city.
Despite the modern theme, the development retained part of its rustic heritage. At the front of the subdivision is a large tree that pushes into the street space. “the tree was a big deal,” said Spencer. Initially, the tree’s removal was needed to make way for the private road into the subdivision. However, Early in the development, the tree was granted a reprieve. Now the roadway snakes around the tree. That change forced the building fronted on the public-street to be smaller than the other buildings in the project. Bike storage and a community trash enclosure fill the space behind the tree, making the layout change beneficial.
Beyond saving old-growth trees, environmentally conscious rainwater management is a consideration for this site. The subdivision retains all rainwater on the property through a mix of Drywells and Pervious Pavers. The pavers create the private road’s surface. Their design allows rainwater to filter between the pavers and absorb it into the ground below. Four shared drywell will accept runoff from the fifteen homes’ gutters and let the water gradually release into the surrounding soil. Spencer admits that environmental concerns cost more, but he appreciates the value it brings to the community.
Originally this subdivision was not a flat lot. It slopes down to the northwest. A tall retaining wall holds back a mountain of soil used to level off the property. The height created by the wall allows for unique city views for the houses above. The wall’s engineering was substantial and caused many months of construction delays. “If I know what I was getting into, I might not have done it.” Said Spencer about building the wall. Ultimately, it has added another defining element to the subdivision that makes it different than many seen in Montavilla.
Todd Spencer stressed the inclusion of upgrades in building these homes. When choosing material, he opted for higher quality and better-designed finishes. The success of those upgrades will only be known when these houses become available for viewing, but they should be evident in the final product. Soon enough, both Spencer and the public will discover how well Montavilla supports this type of subdivision, and its success could bring more like it to the neighborhood.