Habitat project in Chapel Hill seeks to create 'melting pot of opportunity for people'
Posted October 15, 2021 6:13 p.m. EDT
Updated October 15, 2021 7:45 p.m. EDT
Chapel Hill, N.C. — After years of planning, Habitat for Humanity of Orange County will break ground Sunday on a neighborhood in Chapel Hill for low- and moderate-income families.
The Weavers Grove community, on 17 acres off Sunrise Road south of Interstate 40, will include 100 homes and 237 total residential units when its completed in 18 months. The neighborhood also will include a basketball court, a dog park, a fix-it shop, a splash pad and a community garden for residents to grow their own produce.
"[It's] smaller, single-family homes, as opposed to large family homes in large lots, which is what our community has built for most of our history, and also condominiums we can build but would serve a different population,” said Jennifer Player, chief executive of Habitat for Humanity of Orange County.
The units are targeted at families who make between 30 and 80 percent of the area's median income.
“These are folks who either live many miles away from their jobs and have to commute every day for work, or they’re forced to live close to work but in substandard, unsafe, overcrowded or unaffordable conditions,” Player said.
Habitat purchased the site almost 20 years ago because of its proximity to public transportation, jobs, parks and some of the best schools in the state. It is partnering with Garman Homes to develop the neighborhood.
“If there is anything we’ve learned in the last year and a half, it is so important to be together and to have several different people from different walks of life” said Rebecca McAdoo, regional manager for Garman Homes.
The hope is to create a model that will inspire other builders across the country, McAdoo said.
"In traditional neighborhoods, you’re in individual silos, and here, Weavers Grove and Habitat have done a creative and great job of creating this melting pot of opportunity for people," she said. "It’s bold, and it’s needed. It’s going to be amazing."