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Cary Growth Brings Environmental Questions

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CARY — Cary is considered a tree lined suburb, but like many fast growing areas, there are a growing number of residents who believe that the demand for open space is quickly outstripping the supply.

Cary Councilman Glen Lang said that the town is woefully behind in the number of playing fields it has for recreation.

Lang disputes the claim by some local developers that Cary has 300 acres of park land that it has not used. He said that most of it is located on a steep grade or in a creek bed, and therefore not usable.

Lang wants the town to readjust its current formula which calls for developers to give one-thirty fifths of an acre of land for every housing unit that is built.

"Some of the developers are saying that they should have their requirement reduced for donating dedicated land when they build new homes, and that is simply not the case," Councilman Lang said. "The amount of land that we need needs to be increased for every house, not reduced."

Developers point out that once they start work on a piece of land, the cost of the property can rise to $35,000 an acre.

Developer Tim Smith adds that Lang ignores the facts, and noted that the town has enough park land when compared to the national average.

Smith believes that Cary should reduce that amount of land it requires from developers. Residents have mixed opinions.

"They have given quite a bit actually," Resident Jackie Desrosiers said. "We live in a subdivision that's near where they are getting ready to build another park."

Developers do have an option. If they choose not contribute land to the town, they can give money that goes toward park land.

Parks and other topics will be a big topic of conversation at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday night at the Cary Town Hall. The Growth Management Task Force will present its findings after a four month study.


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