Local News

Proposed Expansion Plan at NCCU Upsets Some

Posted April 22, 2008

— Some of the property owners around North Carolina Central University say the school needs to consider options other than the school's current plan to expand the campus by 25 acres.

Under a proposed large-scale expansion plan to be voted on Wednesday by the university's board of trustees, more than two dozen buildings would be constructed to accommodate an additional 5,000 students expected to enroll by 2017.

That would mean demolishing 136 houses north of and south of campus.

"What's going to happen to us?" Heshima Du Ewa, who lives nearby, said. "Where do we go? Do they even care?

The university will purchase the private properties, but it's unclear at what prices.

Concerned residents say they believe a large expansion could hurt their historic neighborhoods. Others want the university to look to expand in less-populated areas not adjacent to campus.

"These are homes that people have lived in all of their lives," Du Ewa said. "This is home to them."

University officials have not commented on homeowners' concerns, but Board of Trustees Chairman Cressie Thigpen said opponents will have an opportunity to speak before Wednesday's vote.

"There are pros, and there are cons," he said. "And so, the board would like to hear from all sides."

The plan is being fueled by growing academic and athletic programs. The nursing program, for example, has received money to become a full-service professional school but needs a new building.

The four-phase plan also calls for more on-campus housing and parking.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • CarolinaAlum06 Apr 23, 2008

    I agree with motorfinga...

    The area is starting to look a little run down, so any upgrades/expansions will ultimitely benefit the area as well as education.

    I under stand the homeowner's concern, but this is GREAT news. NCCU is expanding and growing and with this growth, there is a need for upgrades so that the NCCU students will have better educational advantages.

    I doubt that the people actually OWN the homes, it's unfortunate but they are probably just SOL, since it's the property owner's call... but that's just my two cents

  • Harvey Apr 23, 2008

    Do the people they talked to OWN the homes that are affected? If they are renters, sounds like they might be out of luck. Not their call as to whether the property gets sold.

  • issymayake Apr 23, 2008

    They need to haggle with the city to get McDougald Terrace. That's a huge tract of land, which would establish an NCCU North campus.

  • claudnc Apr 23, 2008

    nathanius - the campus has expanded several times. They were not very large scale expansions but they did expand. THey also grew on campus - placing buildings and new dorms on campus property. There are some proud homeowners near campus - granted it depends on what side of campus you are on - the side near the education building and the student union is fine. THis campus should be privy to the same monies all the other UNC campuses have access too. Why would they be any different. If federal and state tax monies are used for other UNC expansion projects so be it. But why would you think taxes will be raised just because of NCCU expanding and what the heck does Obama have to do with this?
    EMS - your talking about the complex going down Alston Ave. If you keep straight down alston through that housing complex you run in Durham Tech... thats not a bad idea. But it would probably cost more to purchase that from Durham City/County than private properties.

  • motorfinga Apr 23, 2008

    2 people complaining? Get real! That area needs to be developed. Its run down and the neighborhood is starting to attract bad elements. I hope the university expands even further!!

    Education is the key to developement!

  • thinkbeforespeaking Apr 23, 2008

    Central bought out a lot people when I was there (01-05) and it looks like it is going to happen again

  • chfdcpt Apr 23, 2008

    They will get the properties the same way that the government does.
    1. Government has your property appraised at a higher value than the market value, and that is how they set your property taxes.
    2. When they want to buy your property, they will have it "appraised" by someone that will appraise it lower than the market value.
    3. You then begin to haggle with the government because they are not offering nowhere near the tax value.
    4. When you still refuse to sell at the lower than market value, they take it away. It is called emminent domain.

  • thinkbeforespeaking Apr 23, 2008

    this is not the first time NCCU expanded, I understand people anger but, money and education talks.

  • Garnerwolf1 Apr 23, 2008

    Question - is the state using Eminent Domain to purchase this property? If so, that is one issue. If not, then folks don't need to sell if they don't want to move. If they are renting, and the owner does want to sell, that is the chance you take when you rent. Happened to my family once...

  • nathanius Apr 23, 2008

    It gets it's funding from the same place all 16 UNC schools get the funding from. NCCU is not the only campus targeted for focused growth.

    Wonder why the univerisity has so much money to purchase all of those houses??? Must be using our federal and state tax dollars? Maybe Obama needs more space to campaign...