Board to decide on Farmington Rd. townhouse project

Published 12:36 pm Tuesday, February 28, 2023

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By Mike Barnhardt

Enterprise Record

County commissioners may decide next week whether to approve a rezoning that would allow high-density housing on Farmington Road.

They delayed a decision last month on rezoning 19 acres from residential-20 and residential-agricultural to R8, meaning a dwelling could be placed on an 8,000 square foot lot.

The matter originally went to the county’s planning board, who deferred a recommendation because some members needed more information, said County Planning Director Johnny Easter. Commissioner Richard Poindexter said the rush to a decision is in part due to an illness in the Robert Hendrix family, which is negotiating to sell the land.

James McKnight, co-developer, said that no more than 72 units could be constructed on the property because of topographic concerns and wetlands. The townhome-style duplexes, triplexes and other buildings would sell for $300,000 and up, he said.

McKnight said that Terry Bralley, Davie’s economic developer, told him the county has a housing shortage.

“We love Davie County. They’re going to be sold to people who will live in your community,” McKnight said. Gerald Grant, an engineer who studied the property, said residential is the best use. It is located between the interstate and North Davie Middle School.

Poindexter asked Grant if the sale of the property is dependant on gaining the rezoning.

“Without it, the property would be unattractive to a developer,” Grant said. “There’s no need for us to spend any more money or time with R8.”

“Close enough,” Poindexter said.

Commissioner Brent Shoaf made the motion to defer the proposal back to the planning board for clarification, which passed unanimously.

“This is not a stall tactic,” Shoaf said. “We need some housing of this tuype and I think this area is ripe for it. Conceptually, I’m not against this whatsoever.”

“A few members of the planning board felt they didn’t have enough information,” said Commissioner Benita Finney.

Building in an R8 zone would require access to public sewer, which could take a year or two for the developers to build the infrastructure, Easter said.