Local News

Raleigh Reviewing Impact Fee, Infill Proposals

Posted December 4, 2007 5:19 p.m. EST
Updated December 4, 2007 5:22 p.m. EST

— City officials will review proposals to double the fees paid by developers on new homes and to limit the size of new homes after the two ideas were presented to the City Council on Tuesday.

Mayor Charles Meeker wants to double the impact fee charged to developers, from $1,200 to about $2,500 per new home, saying Raleigh's fees are lower than those charged in other cities. Such an increase would raise an extra $8 million to $10 million for parks and roads, he said.

City staff will examine the proposal, including whether Raleigh has the legal right to raise impact fees that high, in the coming weeks.

The Raleigh Planning Commission will review proposals to handle infill development. Meeker last month suggested limiting the size of new homes built on lots where previous homes were razed, saying many people have complained that large homes, often called "McMansions," detract from the character of older neighborhoods.

After numerous people complained about Meeker's proposal, city planners devised two alternatives to resolve the issue. One would limit the size of replacement homes or expansions to 125 percent of the size of the older home, while the other would use Neighborhood Conservation Overlay Districts to set building standards in specific neighborhoods.

A resolution to create a city policy governing the use of public financing for private development also was read into the record Tuesday and likely will be discussed by the council in January.

Developer John Kane has asked for $75 million in tax-increment financing to pay for a parking deck at his North Hills mixed-use project off Six Forks Road. Such financing requires the city to borrow money and to repay the loan through with revenue generated from higher tax valuations on the project and nearby properties.

The resolution calls for limiting public financing to developments in blighted areas that might not occur without such support. Also, Wake County would have to provide similar support for such projects.

Kane couldn't be reached for comment Tuesday.