A new subdivision called Saddle Creek will bring 90 homes to the bustling Bosqueville area, with a real estate agent developing acreage along China Spring Highway bought from McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara.
Chad Hanson, owner of Lake Country Real Estate, said homes will carry prices from $230,000 to $300,000, a range that has become scarce in the Greater Waco market, according to local real estate agents.
“We expect to break ground on the development in 30 to 45 days, meaning we will be building homes this summer,” Hanson said.
He has entered into agreements with four local builders who now have exclusive rights to place homes in Saddle Creek, he said.
Those chosen to participate include Russ Davis Homes, Peavy Homes, Morton Construction and Michael Dutschmann Homes. Hanson has listed information about the builders at mysaddlecreekhome.com.
“We will have a variety of homes there, but more than anything, I wanted to create a quality neighborhood,” Hanson said. “I had not worked with all these builders before, but I’ve been talking with them the past seven months and I feel good about the group I’ve assembled.”
Hanson said he bought 24 acres along China Spring Highway near Parker Springs Drive last summer and has submitted plans to the city of Waco for 90 homesites developed in roughly 30-home phases, as demand dictates.
“We wanted to phase construction out over a couple of years because we did not want to put undue pressure on the school district,” he said.
The site is in Waco city limits and the Bosqueville Independent School District.
“Bosqueville is really an up-and-coming district, but there are very few homes available there,” Hanson said. “It is in high demand from students wanting to transfer from outside the district, but limits exist on those.”
McNamara, who is serving his second term as McLennan County sheriff, said the land he sold to Hanson is part of a larger tract his grandmother, Ina Rose Scott, lived on for years.
“I believe the Scott family came to Central Texas in the 1860s, and the McNamaras got over here a little bit after that,” he said. “There are members of the Scott family still living in Bosqueville and China Spring.”
Fifteen years ago, the site northeast of Waco Regional Airport “was nothing but mesquite pasture, but now we have Bush’s Chicken, McDonald’s, Sonic and a pizza place nearby,” McNamara said. “This subdivision certainly will support the businesses there and those to come. He’s talking about nice houses, and I don’t see any adverse impact at all.”
Growth in the area has prompted the Texas Department of Transportation to widen China Spring Road from two lanes to four lanes between Wortham Bend Road and Steinbeck Bend Road at a cost of $27.8 million, according to figures provided by the highway department.
Scott Bland, a local builder and president of the Heart of Texas Builders Association, said would-be homeowners continue to clamor for new homes priced between $250,000 and $350,000. Any subdivision addressing that need, including Saddle Creek, should prove inviting, Bland said.
He said comparably priced houses will occupy Creekside, a 750-home subdivision proposed by veteran builders Fred Dewald and Richard Clark in far West Waco, near Castleman Creek Elementary School and in the Midway Independent School District. Homes there will sell for $200,000 to $400,000, and add $250 million to McLennan County appraisal values, Dewald said in a press release announcing the venture.
Also under development is the massive Park Meadows subdivision on the western outskirts of Waco, near Hewitt, where D.R. Horton and Stylecraft hope to place 1,500 homes priced at $168,000 to $212,000.
Saddle Creek “would be great,” said Kathy Schroeder, who oversees residential services at Coldwell Banker Jim Stewart Realtors.
“Bosqueville ISD is popular among those who think other districts are getting too big,” Schroeder said. “That site is convenient to downtown, to Baylor University, to industries on the east side, and not so far out residents could not travel to the west side.”
Hanson said Parker Springs Drive near the Sonic restaurant and a clinic operated by Baylor Scott & White Hillcrest will serve as the main entry to Saddle Creek. He declined to say what he paid for the acreage, but land for residential development in that area is fetching $10,000 to $20,000 an acre, according to his sources in real estate.
Luke Morton, with Morton Construction, said he has become familiar with the nuances of the Bosqueville and China Spring markets, having built homes in China Spring and now going up with 10 duplexes in the Foxborough Addition near Tree Lake Drive and China Spring Road.
Morton said he plans to build eight homes during the first phase of Saddle Creek. They will run 1,800 to 2,200 square feet and include four bedrooms and up to three baths. Exteriors will feature touches of brick or stone, and each home will include fireplaces, security systems and lawn sprinklers, creating what he described as a turn-key package.
Morton said he expects to price his offerings at $130 a square foot, meaning a 2,000-square-foot home would fetch about $260,000.
Jason Peavy, with Peavy Homes, said he expects to build five to 10 homes during the first phase of Saddle Creek, and he welcomes the opportunity.
“There should be plenty of demand at the prices we’re shooting for,” said Peavy, a veteran of homebuilding in the China Spring area.