Come summer, there will be a new housing option in Lowell. The Townhomes at Two Rivers is scheduled to open its first 20-unit building by mid-July and have 80 units in total available by mid-October. The development is located on Boulder Drive, between Meijer and the Stoneridge Apartment complex.
“I’m excited to provide a product that doesn’t exist in Lowell,” says developer Matt McCollum. He notes the townhomes will have a luxury feel and an innovative design to appeal to everyone from millennials to baby boomers.
With leases starting at $1,500 per month, McCollum hopes to attract those seeking an upscale rental experience. He thinks the market is right and the location in Lowell is perfect for those who want to enjoy nearby amenities like area parks and breweries while also being only a short drive from work and the big city.
Meeting the Needs of Today’s Rental Market
McCollum has spent the past 18 years building single family homes as the owner of Forest Hills Homes, LLC in Cascade. However, the builder has roots in Lowell. His parents owned the former Flat River Antique Mall and were longtime members of the Showboat committee. McCollum remembers spending one summer replacing wooden bleachers at the old amphitheater on the riverfront.
In recent years, he’s watched as the housing market has changed. In particular, millennials have embraced renting as a long-term alternative to homeownership. Whereas people 20 years ago may have rented for an average of 2.5 years, McCollum notes renters today may spend 6 years in the rental market.
As a result, many renters aren’t looking for non-descript, transitional spaces. Instead, they are seeking somewhere they can make into a home. McCollum hopes to deliver that with The Townhomes at Two Rivers.
Design Enhances Privacy, Reduces Noise
While many apartments make use of shared entries and shared walls, McCollum is hoping The Townhomes at Two Rivers will provide something more akin to a single family home experience. “The design is what we think is cutting edge,” he says. “We did a lot of things different.”
That meant limiting shared entryways to ensure residents don’t have a constant stream of people walking outside their door. The layout allows the townhomes to avoid the back-to-back units found in many apartment buildings. This, in turn, helps minimize shared walls and the potential for noise. Each building will also be tiered with single, two-story and three-story elements.
“We know families with kids are going to be a little noisier,” McCollum says. Seeing that families are most likely to want larger units, “we strategically placed the three-bedroom units on the end [of each building.]”
Each unit also gets access to a clubhouse that will be outfitted with fitness equipment. There will be an onsite dog park and walking and biking paths will help connect residents to area trails and parks.
Diverse Tenants Expected
As for who will rent units at The Townhomes at Two Rivers, McCollum expects it to be a mix of millennials and baby boomers. The 32 ground floor units may appeal to older couples who want to downsize while others may live in the larger townhomes while building a house in one of the many subdivisions popping up nearby.
For single people who want to split the rent with someone else, the development will offer a suitemates program to connect tenants. Each person renting with a suitemate gets their own lease through this arrangement.
Pre-leasing for the property will open in April or May of this year with the clubhouse and first building expected to be ready by July 15th. Subsequent buildings should be completed every 45 days until the entire development is finished in October. You can follow along with the progress on the Forest Hills Homes Facebook page.