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Durham Publix debate moves on 'without favorable recommendation'

Posted February 14

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— The Durham planning commission heard community member concerns Tuesday at a public meeting, in regards to the opening of a Publix grocery store, which is expected to open in 2018. Ultimately, in a 2 to 11 vote, the planning commission decided to send the decision to city council without a favorable recommendation.

Thirty-three people signed up to speak at the nearly 3-hour long meeting, and at one point, the room was at capacity.

The land proposed for for re-zoning is at the corner of Guess and Latta Road. The application was submitted by Halvorsen Development corporation for nearly 30 acres of land on the corner.

"We support some economic development as well as enhancement to the quality fo life for those of us who have resided in north Durham for that many years," said one Durham resident who supports the development.

Residents protesting the Publix claimed there just isn't enough room at that intersection to sustain the traffic it could bring.

The report from the city and county said the request is for a mixed-use development plan, including residential and commercial space. A spokeswoman for Publix said the 45,000 square feet store will hire some 140 employees. Publix recently opened new locations in Apex, Fayetteville and Wake Forest.

"I think that this project would negatively impact the area. It would have a significant impact. It would bring noise pollution. It would bring light pollution. It would bring traffic pollution," said an opposed Durham resident.

The option will still go before the city council — just without a favorable recommendation from the commission.

3 Comments

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  • Charles Williams Feb 15, 4:43 p.m.
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    The same cry babies that are protesting now will be devastated when Kroger decides to close some stores and then they'll wonder why isn't there a store close by.

  • Kelly Thornburg Feb 15, 11:42 a.m.
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    Publix should build/open at Northgate, since everything else is dying there. If you court a couple of large businesses like Publix, Target, Wegmans, Trader Joes, etc, you might save Northgate from life support. The location is more convenient with less traffic and residential impact. Draw folks inward from northern parts of the county, and draw the revitalizing brethren beyond the Downtown Loop and West Village.

  • Kevin Oliver Feb 14, 8:23 p.m.
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    I can't believe anyone is complaining about new development in north Durham.