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New Holland housing development moves forward with this planning board action
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White picket fencing has been added along Quarry Street Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020, as work continues on The Norton Agency's Liberty Lakeview housing development. The 30-home community is on 14 acres off Lakeview Drive and Quarry Street, near the New Holland community. - photo by Scott Rogers

A New Holland housing development marketed to medical residents took a step Tuesday, Sept. 8, toward enlarging its presence in the historic community. 

The Gainesville Planning and Appeals Board gave its OK to an annexation meant to bring five properties into the development off Quarry Street between Highland Street and Lakeview Drive, the northwestern edge of the historic mill community. 

The proposed changes to Frank Norton Jr.’s “Liberty Lakeview” project now go before the Gainesville City Council for a final vote. 

“We want to clean up (the development) so we have a blanket (residential zoning category) over the entire development and so we’ll have consistency in product, and consistency in appearance and feel,” Norton said in a previous interview

Norton’s Ncredible Properties, a residential development and investment arm of Gainesville-based The Norton Agency, plans to build 30 cottages in the area and restore several original mill houses as part of the project. 

The 16.6-acre rental community will feature a gated entrance off Quarry, opening onto a new road running by the cottages, which will feature a farmhouse design, complete with tin roofs. A playground and fire pit have been built in a stand of tall trees next to an old, abandoned road that empties onto Highland. Walking trails and a dog park also are planned. 

The development is being targeted particularly to residents in Northeast Georgia Medical Center’s graduate medical education program, which began in 2019.  

“These (homes) will feel like old mill village houses rather than something that’s multi-colorful or bungalows,” Norton has said. 

The project drew opposition from Odis Sisk, a Quarry Street resident, who said, “This is not a neighborhood. It’s a compound, and that’s how it’s being marketed as. We have a neighborhood. People walk everywhere. 

“To me, this looks like greed, not need.” 

If Norton succeeds, the development will end up with a mix of two- and three-bedroom cottages, duplexes and townhomes for a total of 49 residential units. Rents would range from $1,200 to $1,400 for duplexes to $1,800 for three-bedroom cottages.  

Leasing is already underway, with the entire project set for completion in 2022, Norton said.