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200-lot, single-family subdivision coming to Piney Flats

David Floyd • Updated Aug 19, 2019 at 6:55 PM

Prospective homeowners in the market for a house by Boone Lake will soon have options in Piney Flats.

Work has been underway on The Cliffs at Boone Lake, a 200-lot, single-family subdivision at 887 Rangewood Road, for the last eight months. Thomas Construction Company Inc. is developing the lots, which have been purchased by D.R. Horton. The homebuilder bills itself as the nation’s largest by volume and closed on 55,625 homes in the 12-month period ending on June 30.

Gerald Thomas, Thomas Construction president, said they will be closing on the first phase of development, which consists of 51 lots, in late September or early October. D.R. Horton will build homes on the infrastructure established by Thomas Construction. Thomas said the phase one infrastructure is about 80% complete.

Thomas said Johnson City will provide access to its sewer and water systems, and BrightRidge will provide power.

The contract with D.R. Horton is for four years with 50 lots to be built out each year, Thomas said. If home sales hold up, D.R. Horton has the option to speed up the process.

“They’re anticipating these things selling in less than four years,” Thomas said.

Thomas said he and his partners bought the property in 2006 with the intention of developing it into an exclusive subdivision with a series of boat slips. He said it took them four years to receive approval from the Tennessee Valley Authority for the slips, which now won’t be part of the project. Thomas said he doesn’t yet know how they’ll be used.

Then the economic downturn happened, which made it difficult to sell property on the lake.

“Then the TVA took the lake down and killed us again,” Thomas said.

In 2018, Thomas said D.R. Horton contacted him, and he decided to develop the property into a larger subdivision. Thomas said D.R. Horton is considering home prices from $200,000 to $225,000.

The average single-family home resale price for the 11-county region of Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia was $182,378 in May, according to the Northeast Tennessee Association of Realtors.

According to state real estate assessment data, Thomas’ 76-acre property in Sullivan County had a land market value of about $1.2 million in the 2017 reappraisal year.

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