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Developer files suit against county over project denial
Monday, 01 July 2019 23:32

From Staff Reports

A South Carolina-based property developer  is suing Buncombe County over its denial of plans for a 214-unit apartment complex in East Asheville.

“In April 2018, the county Board of Adjustments rejected a plan by RAB Builders to put a 214-unit complex on Moffitt Road,” Asheville television station WLOS News 13 reported on June 11.  “Neighbors voiced concerns about the size of the project and increased traffic.

“The developer appealed, but a judge upheld the decision. The company took the case to the N.C. Court of Appeals, which hasn’t ruled yet.

“In the meantime, RAB Builders has now filed a federal civil suit against the county, saying it didn’t follow its own guidelines in rejecting the proposal.”

More specifically on the same subject, the Asheville Citizen Times reported in a story that appeared on June 14 that “the lawsuit filed May 7 by RAB Builders LLC argues its planned 31.4 acre development at 423 Moffitt Road met all technical requirements of county ordinances for an R-2 district, intended for residential development. The county’s Board of Adjustment voted 5-2 against issuing The Residences at Riverpark a conditional use permit with much of the board siding with residents who said the proposal is incompatible with the surrounding neighborhood.

“But RAB, headed by Michael Posey, who addressed the planning board last year, said in the filing the county created an open-ended policy without sufficient legal parameters,’ allowing RAB to be unlawfully discriminated against. It is alleging damages in excess of $10,000 as a consequence of the denial for the permit.”

During the first week of June, Buncombe filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, the ACT reported, citing county spokeswoman Kassi Day, who added that the county has spent more than $8,200 thus far with the defense of the lawsuit and related legal actions. 

“The RAB proposal called for the development of 10 apartment buildings, seven duplex buildings, a community clubhouse and about 16 acres preserved as open space with a buffer of trees along the Swannanoa River, the project’s site plan shows,” the ACT noted. “It was expected to have more than 350 parking spaces, the vast majority of which were designated for apartment tenants.”



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