Thursday, July 23, 2009

North Carolina City Strives for Balanced Rather than Reckless Infill

Fayetteville is attempting to solve developer abuses in urban infill with the wise approach of including neighborhood feedback in its Unified Development Ordinance.
Infill - normally a byword for reducing urban sprawl and breathing new life into aging pockets of town - became a bane to homeowners in some established neighborhoods about four years ago.

That's when developers began resubdividing lots that already had homes on them to make room for town houses, condominiums or palatial brick homes.

Rising land values and demand for good neighborhoods and schools spurred the trend. It also alarmed homeowners, who suddenly found their streets being reshaped without any public input.

In 2006, the City Council adopted an infill ordinance meant to address some of those concerns. It adds city oversight and gives neighbors more input before a lot is redeveloped in a residential area.

With infill cases, a lot can't be subdivided without approval from either the Fayetteville Planning Commission or the City Council.

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