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Life at the Beach

Drawing courtesy of KDA This drawing shows the proposed layout of Beach Creek, a new 52-unit Ashland subdivision that will be ready for home construction this fall, with the build-out completed by 2024.
Drawing courtesy of KDA This drawing shows the kind of cottages that will be built in Beach Creek, a new Ashland subdivision, all with solar-power installations. Eight lots for cottages were donated to Habitat for Humanity, which will screen applicants for affordable homes.
KDA Homes to build new Ashland subdivision called Beach Creek and donate eight lots to Habitat for Humanity

KDA Homes announced this week it will build a new 52-unit housing development in Ashland and will donate eight of the lots, valued at more than $1.6 million, to Habitat for Humanity to support affordable home ownership.

The Beach Creek subdivision will be located on a 10-acre site directly northeast of the intersection of North Mountain Avenue and the railroad tracks.

“We feel blessed to be in a position to help our community,” said Mark Knox of KDA Homes, “by partnering with Habitat for Humanity of the Rogue Valley to provide affordable housing to eight hardworking local families.”

KDA Homes is composed of five long-time Rogue Valley residents, with Knox, Laz Ayala and Dave DeCarlow leading the development and construction team.

The partnership with Habitat for Humanity fits with the company’s mission to provide affordable alternatives when it builds new developments.

“We want to enable families to become homeowners who wouldn’t otherwise be able to find those opportunities in Ashland,” said Ayala.

With the donation from KDA, Habitat for Humanity will select families in need of affordable housing based on each applicant’s level of need, willingness to partner with Habitat, and ability to repay a mortgage.

Habitat homebuyers invest hundreds of hours of their own labor into their homes. That sweat equity, combined with working alongside volunteers and other Habitat homeowners, and receiving financial education from Habitat, helps families achieve the dream of home ownership.

“Habitat for Humanity is truly excited to be able to bring our affordable home ownership program back to Ashland,” said Denise James, executive director for HfH of the Rogue Valley.

“We are grateful for the generosity of KDA Homes and its support of our mission,” she said.

Habitat is working with the city of Ashland to create a home ownership model that meets its requirements while still staying true to Habitat’s model and principles.

“We are hoping to roll out qualifications and application information this spring for parties interested in this project,” said Brandon Thorne, director of programs and operations for the Rogue Valley nonprofit.

About 50% of the homes in Beach Creek will be attached and about 50% detached. The eight cottages, to be built on the lots donated to Habitat, will be approximately 800 square feet in size.

“The homes that will be built on these lots will be of the same quality and standards of construction, bedroom mix, material details and energy efficiency as the remainder of the subdivision’s homes,” Knox said.

Four of the Habitat cottages will be together on the south side of the site, with the remaining four purposely dispersed throughout the development.

“The specific intent is to avoid any sense of stigmatization,” Knox said. “And all the homes will be similarly designed with the same level of finishes, per our agreement with Habitat. That was very important for all of us,” he said.

Knox said KDA chose Habitat for Humanity due to its successful track record in the arena.

“I would urge interested and capable citizens and contractors to reach out to Habitat for Humanity and sign up to volunteer,” Knox said. “It’s a great way to meet people and participate in solving the affordable housing crisis.”

The balance of the single-family homes in Beach Creek will range in size from about 1,200 to 1,800 square feet, with a mix of single level, two-story, and one-and-a half-story models. Final details have yet to be worked out.

Infrastructure for the new subdivision is expected to be completed by this fall, at which time vertical construction will begin.

“We hope to have full build-out completed by the end of 2024,” Ayala said.

Robert D. Hodgins said his family was pleased to sell the property to KDA.

“I am now in my 80s,” Hodgins wrote in a letter to Ashland City Council. “My wife and I and relatives in Portland, when we made the decision to sell, did not go for the highest bidder. We collectively wanted the property to go to someone who would turn that property into a place that Ashland and we could be proud of.

“We wanted it to be a place where individuals, families and retirees could experience the beauty of Ashland, just as my family did many years ago,” Hodgins said.

In the letter, he cited the family’s decision to sell to KDA as recognizing the company’s “vision, resources and, most importantly, integrity.”

KDA Homes is in the process of completing the first stage of its Kestrel Park subdivision between North Mountain Avenue and Bear Creek.

It has also built homes in Meadowbrook Park II, Verde Village, Phillips Corner, Ridgeview Place, Billings Ranch and Garden Cottages in Ashland; as well as The Farms in Jacksonville.

In addition to Beach Creek, other upcoming KDA projects include South Stage Park in Medford and Willow Bend in Central Point.

The company’s initiatives include building homes that are solar-powered and eco-friendly, incorporating standards for sustainability, and designing homes that meet Earth Advantage Platinum and Northwest Energy Star standards.

Other KDA priorities are designing communities with drought-resistant landscaping, installing bee-friendly pollinator gardens, and including homes in a subdivision’s mix that are priced below the median home price.

For updates and more information, go to kda-homes.com.

Reach Ashland writer Jim Flint at jimflint.ashland@yahoo.com.