Union Park is officially under construction in Little Elm. Hillwood Community and town officials broke ground on the new 787-acre subdivision near Savannah and Highway 380 on Wednesday. The neighborhood, scheduled to open model homes by 2015, will feature approximately 2,400 single-family residencies. In all, the project is set to cost close to $600 million. Doug Peach, Little Elm assistant town manager, said the homes will feature a “front-yard approach” aimed at creating more of a community atmosphere. “Today, most people spend a lot of time in their backyards,” he said. “In the newer subdivisions, at least people spend time in their front yards with the front-entry driveways. In Union Park, there will be a focus on front-yard living – people talking to each other, interacting, spending time on their porch. We want people to communicate across the street with one another and be a part of the community.” Besides upscale houses, Union Park will feature a pool, a playground, an amphitheater and several jogging trails, among other amenities. But the calling card will be its New York-style park in the middle of the neighborhood. Peach said that Union Park will have a “huge” park in the middle that will be available only to residents in certain areas, but other areas will be open to the public. According to officials, Hillwood wanted more than twice the required green space in the subdivision to give residents a “small-town” feel. “We’re thinking this is going to be a park that unites the community,” he said. “It reminds me of Central Park [in New York]. It’s going to look like someone picked up a big park and just stuck it right in the middle of the neighborhood. It’s going to be really cool.” Hillwood, the company that bought the land on U.S. 380 and will be constructing the neighborhood, has placed high priority on community feedback. In fact, Peach said the company held a large focus group-meeting to voice opinions on the new subdivision. Peach said members of the town staff attended. “We’re very excited for [Union Park] to come to Little Elm,” he said.