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Home-Size Debate Heads to Raleigh City Council

Posted March 18, 2008

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— In some of Raleigh's oldest neighborhoods, newer homes nearly double or triple the size of the ones around them. Some say it's ruining the character of their communities.

The Raleigh City Council planned to discuss the issue at a Tuesday night meeting. The hearing will focus on infill – the practice of knocking down old houses and replacing them with larger ones.

  • Watch the WRAL News at 11 p.m. for an update on the debate.

People on both sides of the infill issue have organized groups and set up Web sites. It's a debate that can pit economics against aesthetics.

Since 2002, about 600 houses have been torn down and rebuilt. A group called Renew Raleigh argues that it boosts property values. If the city of Raleigh restricts how big is too big to rebuild, the group plans to fight it.

“We all have property rights, and I shouldn’t have somebody in some other neighborhood telling me what to do with my property,” said Philip Miller, a Raleigh lawyer and member of Renew Raleigh.

Mayor Charles Meeker said there is not a one-size-fits-all solution and he wants to see the issue dealt with neighborhood by neighborhood.

The council also plans to discuss doubling impact fees charged on new development. Supporters say it helps growth pay for itself. Opponents say it will slow an already struggling housing market.


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  • oldcmag Mar 19, 2008

    Do like I did and buy 5 acre lot and fence the whole thing in after that, landscape and plant hedges that block the unwanted view ! After all that then build what ya want ! a 4200 square foot house that actually " fit" on the land !

  • foetine Mar 18, 2008

    They just slapped up a 300 unit Luxury Apartment complex near my house. The place looks like a trailer park. Nothing in this area looks like this monstrosity. And now we have to worry about all the traffic coming in and out of this place - which is on a busy corner. I don't care what it does to my property value. I know what it's already done to my quality of life in my neighborhood. Thanks Mayor Meeker for being a friend to Vultures.

    Drive down St. Mary's Road and look at the McMansions that have been slammed up against the road and smashed into divided lots. It's just pathetic.

  • Raydianse Mar 18, 2008

    I am so sick of people expecting to obtain something from someone else and not paying for it. If you care so much about what others do to their OWN land then buy it from them. But to try and dictate to others what they can and can't do with their OWN land is about as Stalin as I can think of at this moment. I am hoping that these houses will be all over my neighborhood. Then I won't have to worry about any hood rats roaming around. I am glad to see these areas staying clean and changing. Stop moaning about everything you don't think is "pretty" you know I don't think a lot of the older houses there are pretty so the "bland" houses that you are speaking of to me are the pretty ones. If you don't like it MOVE!

  • Obscurite Mar 18, 2008


    "I think you're defending the terrorists - if they make your property values rise, they can't be all bad. I'm wearing the hat your wife knitted for me."

    so I am on the list because I disagree with you about basic consumer freedom being sold down the river and because I don't believe in giving my government any more intrusive power than it already has...hmmm.

    And if you are wearing a hat my wife knitted then you are crazier than I thought...you should see her knitting...it's aweful...stick with the tinfoil (protecting your brain from government intrusions should be your first priority).

    lol... and the crack den thing...priceless.


  • foetine Mar 18, 2008

    Obscurite - that house was merely in your neighborhood. If that McMansion was slammed against your property line and allowed your neighbors to look into your backyard and your bedroom windows, you might have a little problem moving your house. Can anyone sell a house that's been obscured from the sun by their neighbor's monstrosity?

    These places are going to make really nice crack dens in the near future when the owners can't afford the balloon payments and they get foreclosed.

    I think you're defending the terrorists - if they make your property values rise, they can't be all bad. I'm wearing the hat your wife knitted for me.

  • Obscurite Mar 18, 2008

    foetine...Macmansion owners, lawyers, who's next on the crazy list of "supporters of terrorists"?

    Tell the truth, you wear a tinfoil hat, dontcha?


  • Obscurite Mar 18, 2008

    "Baloney!!! It's all about liking the way you're living then having some selfish jerk move next to you and ruin your airspace and the value of your home." sww1rb

    Actually, if someone builds a home with more value than yours in your neighborhood, your property values increase. Had that happen about ten years ago to my house. Somebody built in my neighborhood and my house sold for $26k more than the previous year I had it appraised. I always pray that some foll will build a huge house in my neighborhood. He'll never sell his but it can only help my property value. Real estate economics 101.

  • foetine Mar 18, 2008

    Obscurite - why you can't accept that members of ReNew Raleigh are pretty much saying that they want us to be slaves to terrorists with their McMansions. They're lawyers. And who is trying to free terrorists from Gitmo? Lawyers. I bet ReNew Raleigh would love for the Bin Laden family to buy up their McMansions. They don't care about society and what it means to live in Raleigh. They've sold us out to the highest bidders.

  • Obscurite Mar 18, 2008

    "This is exactly what we need. More government control in our lives." fedupwithitall

    Glad to see somebody is looking at the larger issue here....I thought I was the only one to get that.

  • foetine Mar 18, 2008

    These McMansion owners are destroying our society. It's like those fat people on airplanes that complain when they're forced to buy an extra seat because they think we shouldn't have a problem with their fat pouring over the armrest and slamming into our normal sized bodies.

    Plus they support terrorists by being wasteful in their house designs.