14 July 2008

The Villages still growing at record pace

This is from the businesswire, a public relations wire service, but I suspect much of the information is accurate.

The Villages is a Safe Haven: Retirement Income Supports Largest Growing Community in the U.S.

THE VILLAGES, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--In spite of the national home building crisis, The Villages sold over 2,400 homes last year and gained 5,000 new residents. This brought the total population to almost 70,000, which is larger than Daytona Beach.

“This year is running even stronger than last year,” said Gary Morse, CEO of The Villages. “We are averaging 7 ½ homes a day, 7 days a week! This will make The Villages about the size of Melbourne by the end of this year.

The Villages is a self contained Active Retirement Community with 80 restaurants, 4 hotels, 2 movie theaters, 2 town centers, 8 shopping centers, 2.5 million sq ft of retail and commercial space, a daily newspaper, TV news network, radio station, hospital, 225 physicians, 15 pharmacies, 9 softball fields, 187 softball teams with 2,800 players, 42 neighborhood swimming pools at 42 recreation centers and 441 holes of golf in 9 country clubs and 24 executive courses.

Now that the building crisis has spread to commercial real estate, retailers and restaurateurs are moving to The Villages because of continuing growth of affluent retirees. The average Villages’ household has a recession proof income of $81,480.

Golf carts are a prime mode of transportation in The Villages. There are 35,873 homes in The Villages, (growing at a rate of 7 ½ per day) and 37,769 golf carts. Some homes have more than one cart.

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