New Town has 200 households
From an article in The Va Gazette
JAMES CITY -- People from all walks of life are moving to New Town.
Out-of-towners looking for a place are buying in. Graduate students from the College of William & Mary are renting apartments. It's really a mixed bag.
The slowdown in housing hasn't hit here. Nearly 200 residential units, including apartments, townhomes and condos, are complete. Hundreds more are on the way.
Townhomes and condos range $200,000-$500,000 and more. The first units were sold before they were even completed.
The pace has slowed slightly according to officials. That's interpreted as having the units finished before they sell.
Joe Stettinius, director of marketing for New Town Associates, said that only about 30 of the 160 townhomes and condos that exist today at New Town are vacant.
Oxford at New Town off Ironbound Road has completed work on 18 of 265 units. Of those, 16 have already been leased and another 10 will be available later this month. Property manager Belinda Hann said that all 265 units will be ready by April 2008.
There's no definitive trend as to who's moving in. Tenants aren't trading other area apartments for a place at New Town. Donje Leach, property manager of Monticello at Powhatan, said that even with all the new units opening, her 267 units have remained full.
"We're still renting apartments," she said. "We like to think it's because people enjoy the maintenance-free lifestyle we offer. We take care of most everything."
So, where are they coming from? Stettinius indicated that they're coming from greater Williamsburg and beyond.
"It's puzzling," he said. "We had one person recently buy a place as a second home. He primarily lives in the Outer Banks."
Stettinius and his colleagues have noticed that the clientele is older than they expected. Many people who are making the move are divorcees or older individuals who are downsizing. They're trading oversized homes in developments like Kingsmill, Ford's Colony and Governor's Land for a smaller place at New Town.
"They're just scaling back as they get older," he said. "The New Town concept is a unique concept for people who want a simpler life. People who don't want to maintain yards or empty-nesters whose kids have left home."
The same has proven true at Oxford. Hann said a family that moved into the new complex this month sold a home and downsized.
About 1,000 more units are in the pipeline at New Town. Settler's Market will have 210 condos in addition to approximately 350,000 square feet of retail space. Another 350-400 single-family homes will be built behind that section.
According to Town Management, the development is at about 60% residential buildout. At buildout, officials expect there will be between 1,200 and 1,500 residential units.
"We're very happy with the way New Town has gone," Stettinius said. "The market has accepted the product, and it's been very interesting."
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