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The Daily Planet's Opinion: February 2020
Monday, 03 February 2020 12:24

Crossroads project defeat ranks as greatest win in WAVL history

It was a red-letter day on Jan. 6 for the residents of traffic-clogged, overdeveloped, but nonetheless funky, artsy and eclectic West Asheville, when the developer of a proposed controversial mixed-use development in the area pulled the application for the project.

Plans had called for 802 units, mostly apartments, off Bear Creek Road near Crossroads Church. The project, on a site that used to be a dairy barn, also would have included 14,400 square feet of retail space, 50,400 square feet of office space and 64,000 square feet of self-storage.

To their everlasting credit, neighbors packed meeting after meeting, arguing against the gargantuan project, saying “it was too big and would impact traffic and water quality in Hominy Creek,” Asheville TV station WLOS reported.

However, as WLOS reported, “The developer could submit a new plan for the site, but that would require a new application.”

The Charlotte-based development company, Catalyst Capital Partners, had sought a conditional use permit project, which, neighbors complained, “was too big and would cause serious traffic and safety issues, was likely to negatively impact nearby Hominy Creek and had the potential to cause flooding issues,” the Asheville Citizen Times noted in a story.

“The Buncombe County Board of Adjustment had heard the case in quasi-judicial hearings that drew overflow crowds in October, November and December. The last meeting lasted so long in December it was continued to a specially scheduled meeting on Jan. 23,” the ACT reported. However, that hearing was canceled following the developer’s withdrawal of the project.

This was a great victory for West Asheville and its preservation. To the best of our knowledge, it constitutes the greatest such triumph in the recorded history of an area of the city that, in some quarters is fondly referred to as “Best Asheville.”





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