New affordable housing proposed in Pittsboro

Posted 3/29/19

PITTSBORO — A proposed 48-unit affordable housing development in Pittsboro cleared its first hurdle during the Pittsboro Board of Commissioners’ meeting on Monday.

The project, an apartment …

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New affordable housing proposed in Pittsboro

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Posted

PITTSBORO — A proposed 48-unit affordable housing development in Pittsboro cleared its first hurdle during the Pittsboro Board of Commissioners’ meeting on Monday.

The project, an apartment complex to be located on Chatham Business Drive, was proposed by Third Wave Housing, a Winston-Salem company that focuses on public, private and corporate partnerships to create affordable housing properties. The company partnered with Chatham County last year for the redevelopment of the Henry Siler School property in Siler City for 44 affordable housing units.

Pittsboro commissioners held a public hearing Monday about Third Wave’s request to change the zoning of the property it would like to develop on Chatham Business Drive from highway commercial to a conditional zoning district in office and institutional.

According to Victoria Baliff, a Pittsboro planner who presented the request to the board, if approved the property would be the first conditional zoning district in town. A conditional zoning district is one where the property fits the zoning; however, additional conditions to enable a development to fit the site are required. This may include specific uses of the property, number of units, design elements, and timing of the development among others.

The new Pittsboro project proposes a complex with nine one-bedroom units and 39 two-bedroom units. According to the county’s Affordable Rental Housing Report released in July 2017, affordable units of that size are in short supply and high demand in Chatham County.

The company is proposing a 65 percent impervious surface condition and 50-foot buffers along a creek and existing pond on the property. During the discussion Monday night, Pittsboro Commissioner Michael Fiocco requested that several items be listed as “conditional,” including that the units are qualified as affordable housing.

Jim Nass, chairman of Pittsboro’s interim affordable housing board, spoke in support of the project. He noted that representatives of Third Wave had met with the committee not only to discuss the project, but provided insight on the challenges of affordable housing in Chatham County. Nass stated that Third Wave has a “considerable amount of experience” in affordable housing, having built numerous affordable housing developments in North Carolina. Nass also noted that the affordable housing board “supports Third Wave” in this project.

Following the public hearing, the board, without objection, sent the project to the planning board for further development.

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