South of intersection at Interstate 20 and FM 741, just east of Mesquite in Kaufman County between Forney and Crandall
2,500-acre master-planned community
Number of planned homes at completion:
8,000 to 9,000
Projected Tax Value:
exceeding 1 billion dollars
Development concept: Mixed use property with office, retail, single family homes, town homes, seven (7) schools, amenity focus on greenbelts, parks, pool, fishing lake, soccer and baseball fields – walkable community with schools and parks connected by trail system.
At build out, Heartland will have over a billion dollars of tax value, with a population of over 25,000 people, and is better described as a “planned city” rather than a master planned community. The land was assembled and entitled by Mabrey & Partners, LLC through the creation of 5 Municipal Utility Districts by the Texas State Legislature as well as Development and Utility agreements that created a regional water/sewer system to benefit nearby cities and Kaufman County. Instrumental to the success of Heartland was Mabrey & Partner, LLC’s teaming up with Hillwood Residential (a Ross Perot, Jr company) which was already developing several large master planned communities in the DFW area. HIllwood had the company wide adherence to quality, a well-organized back office infrastructure and the established relationships with national volume builders that were critical for the success of Heartland.
By visiting other successful developments such as Celebration, FL and Valencia, CA we noted what set them apart from other developments was a strong sense of community. We also observed that the closer families live to schools, the more involved they were in school PTA, extracurricular and sports activities, thus interacting with other families and creating the desired “sense of community”. We met with the Exemplary rated Crandall Independent School District and worked together to alleviate the stress of a fast growing community by setting up an Education Fund and donating 7 schools sites. Typically school sites are an afterthought and are built on whatever land is available at the time one is needed by the School District. However in Heartland, by interacting and essentially creating a de-facto partnership with the school district, we were able to determine ideal teacher/student ratios, school size, etc. and design 7 distinct “villages” in which the center of the community was an Elementary School. We also created color coded walking routes that would allow every child within each village to safely walk to school. Chicanes and traffic circles were included at key road crossings to force automobiles to slow down to below 15 miles an hour. Additionally we created more of a “linear amenity center” that included a 32-acre lake with fishing pier, swimming pool, playgrounds, baseball and soccer fields, basketball courts as well hundreds of greenbelts and a mile long trail all before the grand opening.
Heartland has consistently been among the top selling communities in the DFW area since its inception (for news articles and awards click on View Project Timeline). Hillwood bought out Mabrey & Partners, LLC in 2007 and now owns 100% of Heartland.