Local News

Raleigh Residents, Development Company Fighting Over Land Rights

Posted April 15, 2005 7:02 a.m. EDT

— RALEIGH, N.C. -- Residents of a Raleigh neighborhood are in a fight to save a plot of land on which they said land developers have their eyes.

Homeowners in the Park of Perry Creek neighborhood said the developer, Perry Creek LLC, has no right to tear down trees on the land. The developer said it has a permit to clear the property.

"It's a protected wetlands area and should remain a protected wetlands area," said Perry Creek resident Ken Jacobs.

On Thursday, the equipment was already in place to remove trees when Jacobs' wife stepped in to stop it.

"My first instinct was to stop the damage," said Kana Jacobs, a resident of Perry Creek. "So, I went and got in front of the machine, and told him to stop."

The work stopped, but no one is quite sure who is in the right and who is in the wrong.

The developer's attorney said it has the permits, but has yet to show them. Representatives from the developer's staff, the city of Raleigh and the state were on-site Friday, but no one had any immediate answers.

"The only conclusion we have right now is the N.C. Department of Water Quality is researching the documentation to see if they have approval to be doing what they are doing," said Ken Jacobs.

"If the city permits it, then it's allowable," said Kana Jacobs. "We'll just have to eat it and deal with it. If it's against city policy and someone is trying to do something that's not right, then we need to protect these trees," she said. "Because you can't put the trees back once you take them down."

Ken Jacobs feels the developer is retaliating over a lawsuit the homeowners filed last fall.

The homeowners' association sued over a retention pond behind the trees, saying the developer was making unauthorized changes.

Representatives of Perry Creek LLC had no comment.