Cary OKs townhomes near Park West Village

aspecht@newsobserver.comApril 11, 2014 

— More townhouses are coming to Cary’s northwest border near Morrisville.

The Cary Town Council on Thursday approved a plan that would allow M/I Homes to build up to 100 townhouses on 25 acres between Weston Parkway and Cary Parkway.

The development will be located near the Park West Village shopping center to the south and the Centre Green Office Park to the north.

Nearby residents submitted a petition protesting the project, so approval of a super-majority of the Town Council was required.

The area is home to many townhouses and apartments already.

Al Swanstrom, chairman of the town’s planning and zoning board – which voted 8-0 to recommend approval of the project – told the council that concerns about traffic were unfounded.

“Frankly, you don’t get very many (projects) that are no-brainers,” he said. “This was a no-brainer for us.”

Swanstrom said the site is steeply graded, which doesn’t make it ideal for commercial use.

Council members voted unanimously in favor of the project. Mayor Harold Weinbrecht was absent from the meeting.

Councilwoman Lori Bush commended M/I Homes for creating a path for residents to walk to and from the Park West Village shopping center, which has a Target store.

“I’d just like to thank the applicant for putting in the extra effort and making sure our future Cary residents will have a safe way to get there,” she said.

The project is the second townhouse plan approved by the council this year. Last month, the council approved plans for 97 townhouses in central Cary off of Chapel Hill Road.

A protest petition was submitted against the central Cary townhouses, too.

Both projects were approved largely because they matched the character of surrounding developments, and because developers showed flexibility in dealing with council members’ requests, town leaders said.

It remains to be seen how flexible M/I Homes can be with its plans for another proposal for townhomes in western Cary.

The council recently asked the developer to scale back plans for 152 townhouses on O’Kelly Chapel Road. Ed Kristensen, M/I’s division president in the Triangle, said the company is evaluating its options.

The project would give Cary 349 new townhouses this year – the highest number of townhomes approved in a year since 2009.

Specht: 919-460-2608; Twitter: @AndySpecht

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