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Work on 233 homes in South Hall starting in May
Subdivision to include dog park, other amenities
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An example rendering of the homes being planned in a 233-house subdivision on Friendship Road. Developers plan to break ground in May. Photo courtesy of Mike Dye

Earth moving will begin in May on a 233-home subdivision on Friendship Road that until Thursday had been tied up in paperwork between Hall and Gwinnett counties.

Edge City Properties is developing 74 acres to be named Trinity Falls in the far southern end of Hall County, an upscale neighborhood of homes in the mid-$300,000 range catering to metro Atlanta buyers looking to get more for their dollar farther north.

The first homes will go on the market in 2019, according to Mike Dye, a principal of Edge City Properties.

Research and preparation for Trinity Falls began more than a year ago, and it’s Dye’s first project in Hall County after a career developing property in the metro area. He said late last year that Hall is becoming a more desirable place for builders as development stretches north.

The 74 acres are divided about equally by pasture and woodland.

“We’ll do a lot (of earth moving). It’ll probably take us a good 10 months to put in the infrastructure before we start building homes,” Dye said on Monday. “... We’ll probably be delivering the first homes in January of 2019.”

The homes themselves will be built by Century Communities, a nationwide homebuilder, and will go up in one-year phases of about 75 homes each year. A homeowners association will be formed when all homes are built.

Trinity Falls will include a pool, tennis courts and clubhouse in its common areas, but the subdivision will include one interesting public amenity becoming more common in Georgia communities: a dog park.

Dye said Edge City Properties changed its plans for the community during the planning process to accommodate increasing demand for pet-friendly spaces in new communities around North Georgia.

Jodi Wingard, a 24-year metro Atlanta Realtor who works for Berkshire Hathaway, said she’s seeing the same demand for dog-friendly communities as Americans see their canines as more than pets.

“Everybody wants amenities for their animals, for their pets, because they’re part of the family — just like you have amenities for your children,” Wingard said Monday.

The agent said she sees dog parks and pet amenities as a selling point, and not just in homebuyers. From downtown Atlanta to Avalon in Alpharetta to Dahlonega, more restaurants and businesses (Atlanta-based The Home Depot has been quietly welcoming dogs in its stores for years) are becoming dog-friendly.

From first-time homebuyers without children to established families, dogs are becoming an ever-greater part of the family — sometimes in the extreme.

“I actually have a family in right now from New York, and they’re like, ‘We don’t leave our dog alone, I hope you don’t mind if she comes with us,’” Wingard said. “... I have actually looked at a house not too long ago — the dog had its own closet for clothes and booties.”

The project hit a brief snag over the holidays because of paperwork in Gwinnett County.

Most of the project is in Hall County, but about 10 acres and 16 homes are in Gwinnett County. Both water and sewer will be provided by Gwinnett, which required an agreement between the city of Gainesville — the water provider for all of Hall — and the two counties.

That agreement slowed progress on the project when the Gwinnett Water and Sewer Authority rejected the agreement.

“They had some things in the original agreement that they didn’t want to approve as a water and sewer authority that had to do with fire serves and emergency services and such,” Dye said. “They felt it was out of their realm.”

The agreement passed by the Hall County Board of Commissioners on Thursday only covers water, sewer and stormwater.

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