Photo: Rendering of a home option that will be available at The Delaware at Heritage Crossing development that will be built near downtown Irving.Empty nesters, young professionals, or those looking to downsize their yard without sacrificing a spacious home interior may soon consider The Delaware at Heritage Crossing. By the end of 2016, Hines Development is projected to deliver phase one of The Delaware at Heritage Crossing to builder K. Hovnanian Homes for the construction of 40 new homes in Irving. The Delaware development will be built in four phases and will include more than 100 homes once the project is complete. The highly anticipated residential community will occupy both sides of Delaware Creek. The development will act as a connector, providing residents access to the trail system and to mass transit options such as the Trinity Railway Express (TRE). “Irving prides itself as a connective city. With five major highways running through our community, as well as the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport right next door, we help people get to their destination,” said Mayor Beth Van Duyne. “So, it’s a win-win to build a beautiful new subdivision within walking distance of the TRE and minutes from other major thoroughfares.” The K. Hovnanian homes, starting in the upper $200,000s, will be Energy Star-certified and will include amenities such as granite countertops, wood flooring and brick exteriors with stone accents. This will be an affordable option, given that similar concepts in North Texas include a steeper price tag. The Delaware will be the first single-family residential development in the Heritage District since the late 2000s. The Delaware at Heritage Crossing development will be a garden home community with low-maintenance side yards that include a built-in arbor rather than a standard backyard. The two-story designs will include some plans with an upstairs balcony to enjoy the view of Delaware Creek. The homes will be built in a park-like setting, with residents’ front doors facing a common greenspace. Some of the homes also may face a small pond. Lots will be about 44 by 50 feet. Since the project’s groundbreaking ceremony in April, Hines has worked on preparing the property for residential development including grading, paving, drainage and utilities. The City of Irving Economic Development Department says the development has garnered interest and excitement in the community. “We are happy to see forward momentum in the Heritage District,” said Irving City Manager Chris Hillman. “The city has been seeking innovative ways to revitalize the downtown area, and we believe 100 new families moving into the area is one of the first steps toward resurgence.”The Economic Development Department hopes the new housing development will serve as a catalyst — drawing other projects, both residential and retail, to the downtown area. The Delaware is located minutes from the downtown Heritage District, which has undergone its own revival. In 2015, the city welcomed the grand opening of the Texas Musicians Museum, as well as new restaurants Di Rosani’s and Big State Fountain Grill, which reopened in 2014. In the past five to seven years, the downtown district has seen a revitalization in businesses and storefronts — from the reconstructed McDonald’s on Irving Boulevard to JPT Graphics, which moved to the area in 2011. Along with additional dining and destination options, the Irving Public Library also brought changes. In 2015, the city officially opened South Irving Library on Schulze Drive. Though it is a short walk across the street from its former address, the new library offers patrons an upgraded experience, from free Wi-Fi throughout the building, to public computers for children and adults. In the future, Irving residents may see a new grocery-anchored development, as well as changes to Heritage Park. The development of The Delaware at Heritage Crossing and upgrades to the Heritage District share one common goal: creating a vibrant, long-lasting downtown Irving. And that goal continues to drive the city and its residents forward.