Hundreds of north Raleigh residents oppose grocery store, retail proposal
Posted December 12, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — More than 500 north Raleigh residents have signed a petition objecting to a proposed development on a piece of land on Falls of Neuse Road that would include a grocery store and retail space.
The North Raleigh Coalition of Home Owners says the proposal to rezone the plot at Dunn Road breaks a promise that lured them to live near the 12 acres of wooded tranquility.
“One of the reasons we moved here is we liked all the trees and the nature,” said resident Linda Monaughan. “I’m extremely concerned about the cut-through traffic (in the proposed development).”
The developer, Morgan Property Group in Charlotte, has proposed to build a nearly 50,000-square-foot grocery store and up to 67,000 square feet in total retail space, including a bank and parking lot with 335 parking spots. Publix Super Market is among the stores that could open at the shopping center.
Hundreds of neighbors from subdivisions including Bedford, Falls River, River Oaks, Wood Spring, Whittington and Oakcroft say they feel threatened by the possibility of retail development nearby, especially the noise and traffic it would bring.
“It would change the entire character of Falls of Neuse,” said resident Fred Chauncey.
Neighbors argue they have nothing against Publix, they just don't want the grocery store built on the land. Opponents argue there’s already enough shopping available in the area, including four grocery stores within a 2-mile radius. They expected limited retail development, keeping with protections suggested in Raleigh's 2030 Comprehensive Plan, but not rezoning.
“We certainly didn’t have thoughts that there would be a major grocery store here clear-cutting the property,” Chauncey said.
City Councilman John Odom has heard from supporters and opponents of the shopping center and says he understands the concerns.
“They should be (concerned). They always should be. But, here’s an opportunity,” Odom said. “There’s an opportunity here, but we won’t know what that opportunity is until we sit down at the table and talk about it.”
WRAL News reached out to Morgan Property Group but did not get a response.