Local News

Raleigh 'tiny town' residents worry development will change neighborhood

Posted August 24, 2015
Updated August 25, 2015

— As the population in the Triangle grows, housing development must expand in an area of a Raleigh neighborhood that was once occupied by low-income homes.

Andi White moved into the area known as “tiny town” about two years ago. She’s curious to know how much the neighborhood will change with plans for 58 new homes along Virginia Avenue and Sasser Street.

“I really like the family feel of the area. All around here are people walking their dogs, families walking around, kids playing on scooters,” White said.

About 70 people from the neighborhood gathered at Trinity United Methodist Church on Monday to get more information from developers on what they can expect regarding development for the homes, which is expected to begin in mid-September.

More specifically, they wanted to know exactly how their beloved neighborhood will change.

Developer Jack Morisey did his best to assure the group that the new houses will blend well with what is already in the area.

“That meeting they gave us a lot of great feedback about what they felt it should be,” Morisey said. “One of the most important things I heard a lot was they didn’t want to see houses with front facing garages on them.”

Residents at the meeting were also concerned about whether eco-friendly materials will be used in the project, whether there will be sidewalks, and how the building process will impact ever day life.

One thing Morisey is fairly certain about is the price point. The homes will start at $500,000- much different than the low-income housing that once existed in the area.

After asking questions at Monday’s meeting, many residents seemed receptive to the plans presented, although some said the proposal felt a bit like gentrification.

Morisey said that he still foresees a very diverse neighborhood.

The homes will be built 25 at a time, so the project could take about two-and-a-half years to complete.


Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • George Herbert Aug 25, 2015
    user avatar

    Tiny Town was not low-income housing as people generally think of the term. It was housing that people with low incomes could afford.

    I unfortunately missed the meeting. It will be interesting to see what types of houses the developer will build for that price range. I'm assuming they will be similar to the houses at Pilot Mill--huge houses on tiny lots.

  • Sarah Franklin Aug 25, 2015
    user avatar

    View quoted thread

    That's what I was just looking at. Huge difference!! LOL

  • Jim Hugs Aug 25, 2015
    user avatar

    I'm sure they could fit these tiny houses in somewhere. The little people need somewhere to live.

  • Dean Logan Aug 25, 2015
    user avatar

    "Virginia Street and Sasser Street"

    Maybe that should be "Virginia Ave and Sasser Street".

  • Teddy Fowler Aug 25, 2015
    user avatar

    Tracy he said "the neighborhood will still be diverse" and it still will be.... but maybe not forever.... and Norman... neighborhoods can only improve and be well taken care of.... or they can fall into disrepair and need serious work.... which neighborhood would you prefer?

  • Tracy Watson Aug 25, 2015
    user avatar

    How diverse will it be if the houses are $500k?

  • Christopher Andrews Aug 25, 2015
    user avatar

    Wow, I have been away from Raleigh for a number of years......I never knew they tore down tiny town.......that was a cool little neighborhood......Looks like it has been gone awhile......They always seemed to be rented......I guess the owner just took the big buy out, can't blame them, things change, cities grow.

  • Norman Lewis Aug 25, 2015
    user avatar

    Of course I'm sure building $500K homes in an area of low income housing will not cause a change in the neighborhood (sarcasm intended). What is most likely, is that the new residents will call for changes in community regulations, appearance of homes, etc. , that will cause current residents to not be able to afford housing in the area and move out. To believe otherwise is naive at best, foolish is most likely the correct term. Upper middle class people usually will not willingly coexist in the same neighborhood with people on the lower end of the socio-economic scale.