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Planners endorse 84-unit Duncan Terrace project

An 84-unit complex of workforce housing could go up in the triangle formed by Signal Hill and Duncan Hill roads if the Hendersonville City Council accepts the city Planning Board recommendation to approve a rezoning.

The development would include a community center and seven apartment buildings containing 15 one-bedroom, 48 two-bedroom and 21 three-bedroom units. The Planning Board on Monday unanimously endorsed the developer's request for a rezoning from low-density residential to planned residential development on the nine-acre site. 

Called Duncan Terrace, the project would be built by Mills Construction Co. and the Wesrtern North Carolina Housing Partnership, developer Bobby Funk told the Planning Board. Mills Construction built a similar project in Arden and currently has three projects under way across the state. If the developer receives approval for tax credit financing, units would be rented to lower- to middle-income tenants — a level currently at $57,000 a year or less for a family of four, Funk said. About 4,800 households in the county are in that category, he said. More than 60 percent of tenants in the county are "rent burdened," he added, which means they are paying more than 30 percent of their income on housing.

The buildings cover just 10 percent of the property and would have plenty of open space and convenient access to stores and services. The complex would have fulltime on-site management, a laundry facility and space for computer use, Funk said. Peak traffic generated by the development would not overburden existing roads, he said.

The planning staff recommended that the Duncan Hill Road entrance and exit be aligned with Baldwin Hill Avenue. The city Tree Board asked that the developer save three large trees in the yard of a home on the property and that the developer replace each tree over 12 inches with a similar type tree.

Funk said the company's engineers had overlaid the potential DOT project on the property to see if there would be room for the needed right of way. "We believe there would be adequate space to realign the road to achieve that engineered solution by the DOT," he said.