The decode-and-forward relay technique has been introduced in next generation wireless networks (such as LTE) to extend coverage and improve performance, although it may generate additional inter-cell interference. Soft frequency reuse (SFR) has been proposed as the most promising frequency planning strategy to mitigate inter-cell interference in LTE systems. In this paper we propose an effective combination of relay networks and SFR, with a dedicated relay topology and the SFR-based resource allocation scheme. In the proposed relay network, each relay station (RS) can jointly serve cell-edge users from adjacent cells to increase efficiency. The proposed resource allocation scheme, on the other hand, is able to achieve throughput improvement for both cell-edge users and cell-center users by minimizing the interference impact in the system. The benefit of relay networks with SFR-based resource allocation in terms of 30% overall performance improvement over conventional non-relay networks can be realized as demonstrated by the simulation results.