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Apex Leaders, Developers Address Town's Growing Pains

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APEX — Leaders in theTown of Apexare looking for ways to manage growth. The question is pitting residents against big business.

In March, town commissionersenacted a moratorium on new constructionuntil it could get a handle on growth. Now they think they have come up with a solution.

For the next four years, they are going to limit the number of houses developers can build. In an ordinance approved Tuesday night, Apex town leaders say that homes that have already been approved will be built; new homes, subdivisions and apartment complexes that have not yet been approved will not be built.

The town has already approved plans for dozens of new subdivisions. Developers will have to build out those new neighborhoods slowly, over the next four years. The town will only approve 100 building permits a month for the next 48 months. The moratorium affects 4,800 homes that are already on the drawing board.

"The plan, it'll slow them down a little bit and stretch them over a four-year period because it will take us four years in order to build a new waste water treatment facility," says town manager Bill Sutton.

Some developers fear their unfinished projects will go broke or even force them out of business. At a public hearing, they say they are willing to compromise with town commissioners, but they also want some guarantees.

"It is critical that the town identify and pledge capacity to those communities that improved site plans prior to the temporary moratorium of March 16," says developer Steve Leach. "With that promise in hand, we as developers and builders can again get comfortable with re-investing."

The ordinance approved Tuesday night only applies to new construction of residential homes, not to commercial or business development.


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