Union Co. Neighbors Against Development


MONROE, North Carolina – A group of Union County residents are fighting for their neighborhood, claiming the area is growing too quickly.

The group, mostly located off Fowler Secrest Road, claim their adorable hunk of Monroe is losing its charm and family appeal.

The problem? A proposed development on a 50 acre property at 2500 Fowler Secrest Rd.

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50 to 119 homes up to 50 acres in Monroe causing discontent with neighbors

The project is still in the planning phase and does not have the approval of the city

At the earliest, the project could get a rezoning vote and the decision is in August, but even a decision in August is not guaranteed at this point.

The developer, BRD Land and Investment, has announced plans to build 50 to 119 single-family homes on the 50 acres, selling them at market price.

Neighborhood organizers say the development plan will create too many homes, overcrowd the neighborhood and create traffic and stormwater problems.

Nowadays, a petition against the project has 298 signatures, or more than half of the 500 requests.

“This petition was launched to get a NO vote from Monroe City Council and the Town of Monroe Planning Committee,” he said. at the top of the website.

David Dotson is a fan of his current neighborhood and one of the dozens against development.

“It’s an old and well established neighborhood, there is a good mix of old and young people. There are young children, there are retirees, we really appreciate it because there is a lot more to do, ”said Dotson as he strolled along Fowler Secrest.

He lived in the Fox Hunt Estates area of ​​Monroe for 11 years. The Fox Hunt Estates neighborhood is right next to the planned development.

Now he fears the new development next door will ruin their community.

“There are currently five subdivisions, I would say medium to large in size, that are on this road as it stands now,” Dotson said, adding that another would tax near-stretched resources.

The planned development would bring between 50 and 119 homes to the area, according to developers BRD Land and Investment.

“The infrastructure here just can’t handle it. The causeway, or one of the city’s other systems, ”Dotson added.

Dotson and his neighbors are concerned about traffic, water runoff, housing density and pedestrian safety.

The inputs and outputs of the proposed development are of particular concern to Dotson.

“As you can see, seeing [while] getting out of here is already a bit of a problem, without adding more cars to the pavement, ”said Dotson as he drove Spectrum News 1 out of his current neighborhood.

He and his neighbor Mary Blythe Chipman are worried about the increasing traffic on Fowler Secrest, including creating a main entrance and exit to a neighborhood of more than 100 homes across from the nearby senior living center.

“In that blind bend, there’s a school bus stop right there, and one of the proposed entrances will feed directly into that street and that bus stop. Again, it’s a hill going into a blind curve, ”Dotson said, referring to a school bus stop down the road.

Together, Dotson and Chipman are also concerned that it will take away their reason for loving their home.

“We moved here because we love Monroe, and we love the family atmosphere that is here, we love the quality of the schools here, the amenities that the city has to offer,” said Chipman.

“It makes you feel like you’re not in a city, you’re far from the city, and you can just come here and – you don’t feel like you have the hustle and bustle.” , added Dotson.

Together the two say they are not against developing the property next door to Fox Hunt Estates. They claim they just don’t want the zoning changed to accommodate more than one house per acre.

However, during a phone call, a spokesperson for BRD Land and Investment group said the developer was unlikely to go ahead with one house per acre, saying it would not make sense. financial support for the project.

Instead, the spokesperson said the company will focus on developing 50 to 119 homes. In fact, BRD Land and Investment said it has already reduced the planned number of homes from 134 originally to 119 currently.

The spokesperson also said the company hired a traffic engineer to examine the entrances and exits, placing a right turn only at one end of the property, as well as the main multi-directional entrance and exit in opposite the retirement home, keeping away from the entrance to the Fox Hunt Estates neighborhood.

Asked about the potential for flooding and stormwater runoff, another area concern, the spokesperson said that a retention pond planned at a low point on the property would handle runoff from the site and would prevent overflowing into a nearby stream.

In an email exchange about the project, the city of Monroe said the project could be submitted to the planning council for review at the earliest in August, but it was not confirmed that the plans would be up to date. agenda for next month. Regardless of the town council vote, it would always require the approval or rejection of the municipal council.

“We’re going to kind of keep going back to the drawing board and making sure we feel like we’re presenting something that people can understand our logic and say, ‘Hey, this is a good project and these guys- There have made some concessions, and done things that are a little more like our neighborhood and our community, we can support that now. This is our goal, ”said the spokesperson for BRD Land and Investment.

But no matter what the city and the developer decide, the fight quickly made friends and a closer community.

“I think we got to know our neighbors better too through this process, and it really brought us together as a community for a common goal, and it’s also very exciting,” Chipman added with a smile.

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