THE VILLAGE — Richard Kleffman knew it when he saw it.
He was in the market for convenience, style and energy efficiency.
In the two-bedroom town house he recently purchased in The Village's Hawthorn addition, he found all three — plus a bunch of “wonderful neighbors” he started meeting during morning walks with Truman, his Pekingese mix.
Johnston Builders developed the infill acreage near Hefner Road and N Pennsylvania Avenue. Co-owner Jay Johnston described Hawthorn's townhomes as having a modern flair.
Indeed, the eight dwellings bring to mind the urban-chic aesthetic that has taken root around downtown Oklahoma City but is unusual for a neighborhood as far north and west as Hawthorn — in The Village.
About two years ago, Johnston Builders entered into a deal with The Village that allowed the company to begin transforming a 25-acre swath that Johnston called blighted.
Hawthorn is embarking on Phase Two, platted for single-family “garden” homes along the west bank of a canal that runs north to south between Vineyard Boulevard and Finley Road.
The Hawthorn Townhomes, at 2200 Vineyard Blvd., feature back patios looking south across the greenbelt where Kleffman and Truman walk.
Kleffman's home, at 1,700 square feet, is an example of the larger of two models offered by Johnston Builders. Although every unit is two stories and features two bedrooms, Kleffman's layout has one bedroom downstairs and one up.
The cozier 1,485-square-foot model situates both bedrooms upstairs.
Each home includes an ample foyer which, in the larger units, opens to a living room with soaring ceilings.
Finish details vary from home to home, from wide-plank hardwood flooring in one model to Kleffman's choice of rustic tile flooring.
Kitchens open to spacious dining areas in both plans, with granite-topped counters perfect for pulling up a bar stool while the chef prepares a meal on the stainless cooktop and oven. Unusual tile backsplashes round out the kitchen decor.
The master bedrooms are large, with impressive master closets accessed via sliding “barn doors ” The master bathrooms are finished “like a $400,000 house,” with granite countertops, custom cabinetry and fixtures, and spa-style showers, Johnston said.
In the larger homes, a loft “flex space” overlooks the living and dining rooms. In Kleffman's case, it's an office, though Johnston suggested it could be a den, media room or exercise space.
Each home includes an oversize single-car garage opening into a utility room adjacent the kitchen.
Kleffman, who also has a home in Ashland, Ore., said he loves the convenience afforded by his $50-per-month homeowners association dues — meaning he'll never have to mow a lawn again if he doesn't want to.
He also was sold on Hawthorn's location: He walks a block one direction to the post office, a block in the other direction to the library.
The Village Police Department is at the corner of the property, “so we all feel pretty safe,” he said.
Kleffman mentioned one other pleasant surprise about being a Hawthorn townhome owner: His utility bills are “about half” of what he was paying in a single-family home in Edmond before buying in Hawthorn last year.
“That's part of our green theme,” Johnston said.
“Not only do we highlight the greenbelt,” the walking trails that wind throughout the development, but construction materials and methods have all been selected “with an eye on efficiency,” he said.
Although Johnston is finding that Hawthorn's townhomes and garden homes alike appeal to homebuyers of all ages, some 70 percent are “retirees or folks scaling down” from larger homes to a more manageable layout.
As sprinklers splashed to life one recent morning, Johnston said, “People love the landscaping and these front porches” combined with “the contemporary look” that has become common downtown.
That is all well and good, Johnston said. “It's just that downtown's not for everybody.”
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