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7,000 Acre Chatham Park Seeks Rezoning

Chatham Park
Sasaki Associates

The developers of the 7,000 acre Chatham Park project have submitted a rezoning request to the town of Pittsboro, NC. Months after the initial zoning approval, the developers have acquired a few tracts of land that add up to about 45 news acres.

According to Tim Smith of Preston Development, every time they add new land to the project, the whole lot will need to go through a rezoning process. He says this does not put the project on hold, because it can continue to operate under the old zoning until the zoning is confirmed.

The project has caused concerned among some in the town. The nonprofit Pittsboro Matters filed suit against  the town board of commissioners back in August after an earlier re-zoning request was approved. In a release last week, the advocacy group claimed the developer is seeking new re-zoning as a response to the suit.

"The lawsuit was not an impetus to the rezoning," said Tim Smith. "But we made some changes in the way some of the notices were posted and sent out because of that. But it was not the impetus behind it."

Town Manager Bryan Gruesbeck recognizes that some are overwhelmed by the the scope of the development.

"It may seem like an onerous task," said Gruesbeck. "It may seem too large to consider at times. But I believe the process allows for a considerable amount of planning as we go along."

There's a public hearing Monday night during which the re-zoning request will be considered. Tim Smith says there are other tracts the developer could acquire which would mean more such requests and hearings in the future.

>> Look at this map of the proposed development.

Stories, features and more by WUNC News Staff. Also, features and commentary not by any one reporter.
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