I live in North Asheville off Aiken Road in a small, quiet neighborhood of mostly retired folks who have lived here for 40-plus years.
Country Oak Drive is a wooded, private road with a few houses and people who keep to themselves. Country Oak borders my lane with woods, which are a habitat for birds, black bear and deer.
I am deeply horrified to learn that Hathaway Development, a non-Asheville developer from Atlanta, wants to put a high-density apartment complex on 29 acres on Country Oak.
On Wednesday, Nov. 8, at noon they are asking the Buncombe County [Board of Adjustment] to approve this project.
I have lived in Buncombe County since 1977 and vote for commissioners who I know will look out for us. But do they?
Aiken Road is, unfortunately, one of the worst roads in the county. People speed, and it is already congested, especially when Thermo Fisher lets out.
This is not the right place to drop in 300 apartments. We are terrified.
The population density of our 28804 area is 750 persons per square mile (2016 census). Hathaway proposes to erect a 300-unit complex on 29 acres. That’s about 30,000 persons per square mile. If they succeed, it will start an avalanche of more high-density apartment complexes in our area.
… Remember, this land is home to black bear and deer, foxes and other wildlife.
The number of apartments will bring between 1,000 to 1,500 people who are not property owners and who will only stay an average of one to two years. So, lots of turnover.
That number of apartment dwellers means another thousand vehicles on Aiken Road, New Stock and Merrimon, not to mention other streets and I-26. This will aggravate driving conditions even more.
The correct use of this property would be single-family homes in keeping with the character of the neighborhood. However, we know we can’t depend on our elected officials to do the right thing.
Collectively, we can protect our neighborhood, our investments and our property values before it’s too late.
The Buncombe County [Board of Adjustment] meeting is Wednesday, Nov. 8, at noon at 30 Valley St., Asheville.
— Marilyn Ball