Taylor Morrison purchases nearly 1,200 lots in 5,000-acre Crystal Falls master-planned community in Austin, Texas

Cindy Allen

Cindy Allen

Jul 13, 2010 – Business Wire

AUSTIN, Texas , July 13, 2010 (press release) – Signaling the next step in what it sees as the future of Austin, Taylor Morrison Communities has acquired a portion of one of the area’s biggest development jewels – Crystal Falls in northwest Austin.

The company closed on the almost 1,200-lot parcel on June 30 and officials with both Taylor Morrison and the developer, The Lookout Group, Inc., say they are excited for this next chapter in the famed community’s development. The Lookout Group was represented by Joe Duncan of Duncan Commercial Properties.

“The views are breathtaking, the northwest Austin location is very desirable and our plans for the future fit perfectly with this on-going master planned community,” said Tim Towell, who heads up Taylor Morrison Communities - Austin Division.

Initially started by the Lookout Group in the mid-1990s, Crystal Falls is the largest master-planned community in Austin and the last undeveloped area of hill country in Austin’s booming northwest corridor, an area known for its sweeping views and proximity to major employers. To date, approximately 1,000 acres of Crystal Falls’ 5,000 acres have been developed.

“We pretty much had our choice of partners for this portion of our community,” said Bill Hinckley, president of The Lookout Group. “Taylor Morrison was hands down the best choice for us. This partnership provides a new focal point for Taylor Morrison in Austin and it takes an already successful community to the next level.”

Towell said he expects Taylor Morrison to build four new communities with at least three of them offering new product. Many of the lots will have canyon buffers and elevation views. Working in partnership with other local builders is also an option.

“As Steiner Ranch nears completion, we’ve been looking for the next logical step in Austin,” said Jim Plasek, vice president of land resources for Taylor Morrison. “Crystal Falls has it all - numerous amenities, perfect proximity to Lake Travis and the city as well as a shared school district with Steiner Ranch. It fits the bill perfectly for Taylor Morrison.”

The community offers substantial amenities including a Junior Olympic Pool with a splash and play park, fishing pond, tennis courts and a disc golf course. A second amenity center includes a resort quality pool, bathhouse, sand volleyball, playscape, picnic area and recreational field. The nearby 18-hole Crystal Falls Golf Course has a new pro shop, restaurant, creek side park, cart barn, and driving range with a short game practice area. Crystal Falls is located in the Leander School District with three on-site elementary schools and the middle school and high school are within 1 mile.

Towell and Taylor Morrison worked closely with The Lookout Group over the last few months to draft the purchase agreement and each side said they are looking forward to working together for some time to come as the future expansion of Crystal Falls takes shape.

“With its successful background of developing master-planned communities and blending that strategy with quality-built homes, Taylor Morrison is a perfect fit for joining us in Crystal Falls,” Hinckley said.

For more information on Taylor Morrison, please visit www.taylormorrison.com.

About Taylor Morrison

Taylor Morrison is the No. 1 private homebuilder in the United States, according to Builder magazine, building a wide range of product for discerning home buyers across the country. With more than 150 communities in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida and Texas, Taylor Morrison offers first-time, mid-market and mid-to-upscale housing in both master-planned communities and urban infill neighborhoods. The company also operates under the Monarch brand in Ontario, Canada, where it builds single-family homes and high-rise condominiums. Taylor Morrison, Inc., is a wholly owned subsidiary of Taylor Wimpey plc (LON: TW), a home building company with 125 years of experience and operations in the United Kingdom, North America and Spain. For more information, visit www.taylormorrison.com.

About the Lookout Group, Inc.

The Lookout Group is Real Estate and Investment Company with Offices in Houston and Austin. They have over 18,000 acres of land in various stages of development. In addition to Crystal Falls, they are developing Clearwater Ranch and Sundance Ranch in Liberty Hill, Crossroads Centre in Waxahachie and a 9,200-acre Ranch Preservation Community called Tecolote Ranch outside of Santa Fe, NM. They have also developed several communities on the shores of Lake Travis over the past 20 years.

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