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Build-for-Rent developer files plan for subdivision on Hickory Tree Road


Atlanta-based ResiBuilt is looking to enter the Orlando market with its first purpose-built rental subdivision of 554 homes on Hickory Tree Road south of St. Cloud.

ResiBuilt has applied for concept plan, rezoning and preliminary subdivision approval for Hickory Village at Lake Gentry on an assemblage of 112 acres.

Led by former Craft Homes executive Richard Maddalena, ResiBuilt Florida is seeking approvals for a mixed-use community with 249 detached single-family homes and 305 for-rent townhomes. The property is sandwiched between D.R. Horton’s 545-home Buena Lago community and the 873-home subdivision proposed by developer Kahled Hussein on part of the former Triple H Ranch.

If approved, this would be the largest Build-for-Rent subdivision in Central Florida, but Maddalena said ResiBuilt might sell off a portion of the community to a traditional for-sale homebuilder.

The ResiBuilt property is part of a county-initiated Comprehensive Plan Amendment to approve Conceptual Master Plans Mixed-Use Districts 5 and 6. ResiBuilt engaged Rj Whidden and Associates to create a concept plan utilizing mixed-use principles and an urban-style grid pattern.

The narrow section closest to Hickory Tree Road would have 24 alley-loaded detached homes, while all of the other houses and townhomes in the neighborhood would be front-loaded. Unlike most mixed-use residential communities, the detached lots are all 50-feet wide and townhomes are 24 feet wide.

The 554-home subdivision would be divided into five phases built between 2022-2027. The commercial section is planned for the final phase.
The 554-home subdivision would be divided into five phases built between 2022-2027. The commercial section is planned for the final phase.

“We are falling exactly in line with what the county wants to see for mixed-use,” Maddalena said. “It helps that Rj Whidden designed the Conceptual Master Plan for the county. They designed this project to model exactly what the county wants to see there.”

That includes nearly 5 acres set aside for neighborhood commercial uses and a 1.6-acre amenity site. Maddalena said the recreation area would likely include a pool, cabana, playground and dog park.

The plan divides the community into five development phases, beginning at Hickory Tree Road and ending with the community center. The proposed timelines shows the projected start date for phases 1 and 2 in 2022 and total buildout over five years.

The developer is not required to hold a community meeting because the requested zoning and concept plan are consistent with the Mixed-Use future land use and recently adopted comprehensive plan amendment. Maddalena said ResiBuilt homes have the same level of quality finishes and amenities as national homebuilders. ResiBuilt provides all of the landscaping and maintenance for the community.

“You won’t be able to tell the difference,” he told GrowthSpotter. “With regard to finishes, it will be competitive with the market we’re building in. The product will look no different from what D.R. Horton, Pulte and DreamFinders are doing.”

BFR communities are one of the fastest-growing trends in the residential real estate segment today. While some of the largest BFR developers specialize in cottage-style communities, often referred to as horizontal apartments, ResiBuilt develops traditional platted subdivisions.

In Atlanta, the company has grown so quickly it has partnered with production national retail builders to construct its BFR neighborhoods. ResiBuilt launched a regional expansion across the Southeast this year, opening a Florida division about six months ago, Maddalena said. So far, the company has BFR projects in the development in Wildwood and Tampa Bay and even more planned in markets such as Jacksonville, New Smyrna Beach, Naples and Sarasota. ResiBuilt is even designing a new product line specifically for the Florida market.

“The pipeline that I’ve been able to build with regard to lots, LOIs accepted and what we have under contract is truly impressive,” Maddalena said. The company is getting ready to launch its own vertical construction division and will be building new offices in the Lake Nona area.

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