RDU To Lease – Not Sell – Land Near I-40

Sep 15, 2017

The Raleigh Durham Airport Authority has decided not to sell off three parcels of land near Interstate 40.

This comes more than a month after the Conservation Fund offered $6.6 million to buy a wooded parcel that is popular for its cycling trails. The Umstead Coalition, an advocacy group, says the RDU Authority violated open meetings law when it rejected the offer.

But officials say the airport is continuously growing and doesn't want to restrict its movement, according to spokeswoman Kristy VanAuken.

“We're just very reticent to make a decision now that could potentially mean that we don't have the room to expand the community will need years from now,” VanAuken said.

VanAuken said RDU will instead consider leasing the partially-wooded land to supplement its revenue as it looks to build a new runway. The airport is currently soliciting a "request for proposals" to lease the three parcels.

“We've got an RFP that's out right now that would allow individuals, groups, municipalities to send us a proposal to lease any one of three properties either singularly or as a group or any combination thereof,”  she said. “So we're pretty excited about what we might see.”