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117 upscale homes approved

The Suncoast Parkway has beckoned a new upscale development on Anderson Snow Road, north of County Line Road.

The Hernando County Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously approved plans Tuesday that would allow for 117 homes on half-acre and one-third-acre lots in a 95-acre development called Avalon Village.

"We hope to build a very tasteful development there," said Jerry Harris, president of Avalon Investments. Avalon Village would be the company's first development.

Harris said he was drawn to the site because of its access to the Suncoast Parkway.

Avalon Village is among the first major developments proposed for the far southern part of the county since the parkway opened. The development would be about a half-mile north of County Line Road.

Harris said he also is interested in the project because of continued demand for subdivisions in the wake of waning supplies of larger land tracts.

"Other developments are sold out, so we're hoping to offer something nice for builders," Harris said.

An L-shaped development, Avalon Village would offer 60 homes in the first two phases of development and 57 homes in the third phase.

Avalon Village would take advantage of an increasingly popular design in Hernando County, the village-style concept, in which groups of houses cluster in self-contained pods. In Avalon Village, homes would be built along private roads, with a public road running east-west, connecting the subdivision to Anderson Snow Road.

Both the 975-unit Hernando Oaks off U.S. 41 and the proposed 1,250-unit Holland Springs subdivision off Elgin Boulevard have adopted the village-style design.

However, the lot sizes proposed for Avalon Village are more spacious than those in previously planned village-style developments, which have tended to squeeze more houses together.

At this point, Avalon Village doesn't plan to have a guard gate to secure the community, said Alan Garman of Civil-Tech Consulting Engineers Inc., which represents the developers.

Both Garman and Harris called the development "upscale," but they did not elaborate on the price range for homes in Avalon Village.

The land was already zoned appropriately for such a development. The developers will come back before the planning commission to get more of their design plans approved.

_ Jennifer Liberto covers business and development in Hernando County and can be reached at 848-1434 or