CLASSIC CHARACTER: The 3,127-square-foot Santee model has four bedrooms, three baths, and a spacious bonus room with its own stairway. The home boasts a grand entry that leads to a great room with a cathedral ceiling.
CLASSIC CHARACTER: The 3,127-square-foot Santee model has four bedrooms, three baths, and a spacious bonus room with its own stairway. The home boasts a grand entry that leads to a great room with a cathedral ceiling.

WHY IT WORKED: A preponderance of brick, shoebox-style housing in the Oklahoma City area made this first-of-its-kind New England–concept neighborhood an instant standout.

  • The community greets buyers with a historic-looking mill with operable waterwheel and a grand wooden covered bridge overlooking a pond. The concept attracts buyers who want to live in a distinctive neighborhood.
  • The developer worked around old-growth trees to create green-belts and leafy canopies for its historically detailed homes.
  • No house in the neighborhood has the same plan. Buyers can choose their own plan as long as it fits the character of the neighborhood. (Most plans come from Donald A. Gardner Architects' home plan collection.) The builder promises: “Your new home's blueprints will be thrown away after construction.”

PROJECT CREDITS

Project: The Vineyard, Norman, Okla.; Sales started: July 1999; Sales through August 2005: 100; Units planned: 400; Price: $250,000 to $900,000; Unit size: 2,000 to 6,200 square feet; Developer/Builder: Applewood Homes, Norman; Architect: Donald A. Gardner Architects, Greenville, S.C.; Land planner/Landscape architect/Interior designer: Amberly Frost, Norman

Learn more about markets featured in this article: Oklahoma City, OK.