For the next two weeks nobody can get a new building permit in Cary, and after that, the number of permits will probably be limited.
That's because Cary's Town Council wants to make sure its residents have enough water on tap.
Water use restrictions -- three words homeowners hate to hear. It could happen in the Triangle's fastest-growing town. Cary's water plant is near capacity, and it won't be expanded for at least another four years.
To prevent the water shortage from getting worse, Cary's Town Council plans to take the dramatic step of limiting the number of building permits allowed each year.
Councilman Glen Lang says, "This isn't a new issue. It's merely that they're now facing the reality that we're now practically running out of water"
Right now, Cary has no building permit limit, granting close to 2,000 of them every year. That number could be cut in half, and that's bad news for local homebuilders.
The Homebuilders Association's Jim Wahlbrink, says, "It's gonna hurt a lot of people who made investments out there, and now not being able to get permits to build those houses."
The regional homebuilders association believes that Cary's plan will not solve the water shortage problem. Councilman Lang admits that even with the building permit limit, it may still have to impose water use restrictions in a few years.
"The question will be how do we go about balancing the needs of the existing citizens with the needs of the development community that continues to drive growth here," he says.