CARY, N.C. — Cary and Chatham County are at odds over a tract of land that straddles Wake and Chatham counties.
Cary town leaders decided Thursday to table the issue for now, but the annexation fight is not over.
The tree-lined parcel of land is at the center of a brewing annexation fight between Chatham County and Cary.
It is the proposed site of the Forest Oaks subdivision. The developer wants Cary to provide water and sewer service to the property.
The Town of Cary will not do that without annexing the land, and that is where the fight begins.
"This is voluntary. They have come to us to asked us for those services," Cary mayor Ernie McCallister said.
Voluntary or not, the proposed annexation in this corner of Chatham County has some residents seeing red.
"We moved to Chatham County because the pace is just a little bit slower. There are a lot less restrictions and there's a lot less traffic," resident Sally Kost said.
That outlook may not reflect what could happen.
More than 500 homes could replace trees and scrubs.
The developer did go back to the drawing board after a recent planning and zoning meeting. He is proposing adding more buffers along the main road and improving the drainage system to protect nearby Jordan Lake.
"It makes it a better project. I think because a couple of those concerns were directly from council, that they would see that they've heard questions come up and they've tried to respond to them," developer Chris Smith Said.
The council tabled the proposal, because its policy requires such changes be submitted 10 days in advance.
The proposed changes, though, did not change how Chatham County commissioner Bob Atwater feels about annexation.
"Understanding that you have the authority to affect the annexation, you ought not move in such a manner," he said.
The issue will come up again in a couple weeks. Before then, Cary plans to set up a meeting with the Chatham County Commission.
Both sides agree development will happen. The plan is to figure out a way to coexist when the hammers and nails start flying.