MINT HILL – Epcon Communities is targeting 21 acres off Idlewild Road for its next 55-and-older neighborhood.
The homebuilder envisions 53 homes, a walking trail and a central park area with an outdoor seating area and fire pit.
Mike Davis, director of land development at Epcon Communities, shared plans for The Courtyards at Mint Hill with town commissioners before their Jan. 9 meeting to get feedback before submitting official paperwork.
Epcon Communities specializes in building homes for 55-and-older buyers. The company focuses on age-restricted homes, which require that 80% of units have at least one occupant age 55 or older.
Davis said age-restricted communities don’t generate as many road trips and make a lesser impact on school enrollment than a traditional neighborhood of single-family homes. Their communities also have low crime rates.
“Our buyers support local businesses, restaurants and services nearby,” Davis said. “They typically will donate more time to charities and organizations.”
Epcon Communities has been active in the Charlotte housing market since 2013. The company has homes available in several communities across the region, including Concord, Gastonia, Huntersville, Mooresville and Wesley Chapel.
The company broke ground in November on The Courtyards on Lawyers Road, which will include 146 homes at Lawyers and Allen Black roads in Stallings. It sold out of homes two years ago in The Courtyards at Emerald Lake, also in Stallings.
Davis said what makes the product unique is the rear yard is passive space. Fencing between the units creates a courtyard effect, allowing people to use the space for entertaining. The community provides yard maintenance for residents.
Davis told commissioners that homes in The Courtyards at Mint Hill will have side setbacks of 10.5 feet.
Mayor Brad Simmons told Davis that he’d like to see the density to be closer in line with two units per acre. He also expressed concerns about the proximity of homes, making note of something Davis said earlier in the presentation regarding neighbors typically taking advantage of their fenced-in yards by adding grills.
Commissioner Dale Dalton mentioned the idea of installing sprinkler systems in the homes.
Davis said buyers aren’t used to having sprinklers in their homes. He said communities request sprinklers because they’re concerned about the property being outside of fire coverage or if there is a single entrance into a community. The Courtyards at Mint Hill will have two entrances at Hooks Road.
“The problem I got with it – these things are so close together,” Dalton countered. “If one catches, I don’t care how close (Fire Chief David Leath) is, he’s not going to be there before two or three catch fire.”