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River Islands breaking new ground
wider NEW
The River Islands project is similar to housing in Brea with the big difference being the Lathrop neighborhood homes will feature a Craftsman architectural style as opposed to a Spanish influence. Two homes front the street while the third has an entrance from the street but is above three 2-car garages accessed from an alley. - photo by Photo Contributed

They’re not traditional freestanding homes. And they’re also not townhouses. Neither are they condominiums per se although they met that legal description because common garage walls are shared.
For want of a better term they’re “modern bungalows” with a definite lifestyle and land use twist. And they’re coming to River Islands at Lathrop to fulfill Cambay Group’s commitment to offer somewhat smaller at-market homes aimed at improving affordability without sacrificing lifestyle.
Van Daele Homes is introducing a free-standing cluster home neighborhood that was a big success for the firm in Brea located in Orange County in Southern California.
The 114-home neighborhood consists of a development pattern featuring clusters of three homes.
Two homes are in front facing the street much in the manner traditional single family homes are. There would be courtyards along the front elevation of the 2-story homes with limited front yards.
The third home would be accessed by a sidewalk between the two homes nearest the street. The third home will be above three 2-car garages that are accessed from an alley. The home would be on one floor except for the front entrance and stairway.
All three homes would have private patios and balconies. The only common walls would be in the garages.
“They are really cute looking bungalows,” River Islands Project Manager Susan Dell’Osso said.
The Brea neighborhood featured Spanish architecture. The River Islands neighborhood will employ Craftsman architecture to blend in with other homes being built in the 11,000-home planned community.
The homes will feature between 1,581 and 1,728 square feet of living space depending upon the residence along with two-car garages. The expected price range is between $375,000 and $425,000 with the home above the garage being the lowest price. All of the homes would qualify for FHA loans. When more traditional single family homes started selling at River Islands in 2014 they started at $300,000. Today the seven active builders with 23 model homes offer houses that start at $450,000. Two additional builders will start offering homes in the coming months.
There are 650 families already living in River Islands with another 700 homes under contract.
The bungalow neighborhoods will have 13 homes per acre as opposed to a density of five homes per acre elsewhere in River Islands.
In Van Deale’s brochure for Castile at la Floresta in Brea there are three floorplans.
The home above the garages described as being “elevated in true carriage style design” has all of its living space on one floor covering 1,581 square feet. It offers dual master bedrooms or three bedrooms.
One of the two forward placed homes that are both two stories has 1,782 square feet with a first floor master bedroom plus another master bedroom and two secondary bedrooms on the second floor.
The other home has 1,568 square feet has a master bedroom and two secondary bedrooms.
The double master bedrooms in two of the homes is part of a growing trend in Orange County where either two single people — and sometimes two couples — will buy a home and share common areas. A number of home buyers also rent the second master bedroom suite to provide income to help with the mortgage payment. It also fits into the trend of two generations living under one roof.

To contact Dennis Wyatt, email