Commissioners Reject 467 Unit Housing Development

Johnston County Commissioners have rejected plans for a 467 unit housing development on a dead end road near the Wake County line.

In a unanimous vote, commissioners denied a request by Site Development of Raleigh for a planned housing development on a 126 acre tract near the dead end of New Bethel Road off Cornwallis Road.  The Johnston County Planning Board had previously recommended denial due to several concerns.

Representing the applicant, Charles Walker of Raleigh said the development would average 3.52 units per acre and would meet density and stormwater requirements. He said the homes would provide affordable housing and increase the tax base.

A traffic study would require a new traffic signal at Cornwallis Road and New Bethel Road,  the addition of a new turn lane on New Bethel and the lengthening of an existing turn lane on Cornwallis.  Walker said they would comply with all NC DOT requirements.

However, commissioners expressed concerns about the impact 467 new homes would have on New Bethel Road, which presently has about 200 homes.  By more than doubling the homes and exponentially increase traffic flow on the narrow two lane roadway, commissioners said they had concerns about traffic and how emergency vehicles could respond to the area in the event of an emergency.  Saying there was only one way in and one way out, it would create traffic issues as well at the intersection of Cornwallis Road, which is already in need of upgrading.

Johnston County Public Utilities Director Chandra Farmer said the development would require between 95,000 and 112,000 gallons per day (GPD) wastewater capacity. Currently, the county only has 690,000 GPD capacity in that area until a plant expansion is completed.

Planning Director Braston Newton said his staff recommended the rezoning petition and special use application be denied due to the extreme density of the project and all the traffic being funneled onto a dead end road.

Commissioner Butch Lawter made a motion seconded by Commissioner Patrick Harris to deny the rezoning. The board voted 7-to-0 to reject the request.

No one spoke in opposition of the development during the public hearing.