Ave Maria, Fla., is a new community that was developed in conjunction with Ave Maria University, the first Roman Catholic university developed in the U.S. in more than 40 years. The town was founded in 2007.
Ave Maria was designed to be a compact, self-sustaining town that reflects the community's rural roots and offers its residents a full range of residential and commercial services.
Ave Maria was developed through a partnership between Barron Collier Cos., Naples, Fla., a real estate company; Pulte Homes, Bloomfield Hills, Mich., a large home building company; and Thomas S. Monaghan, founder and chancellor of Ave Maria University (as well as founder of Domino's Pizza and former owner of the Detroit Tigers), who donated more than $250 million to the university.
"For several years, there had been much publicity about this project," says Roger Smith, vice president of Crowther Roofing & Sheet Metal of Florida Inc., Fort Myers, who began providing budget pricing and design options for Ave Maria in 2004.