underoak

Ballantyne

188 posts in this topic

Here's a place to discuss the rezoning issue at Providence Road West and Johnston Road, for low income housing. Initial discussion began under the Charlotte Coffeehouse forum.

Here's the rezoning request, with a public hearing in front of the Charlotte City Council on March 15.

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Oh wow, had no clue about this development. I'm sure not everyone in Ballantyne is all gung-ho about this.

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The belief is this will give parents, who can't afford to live in Ballantyne, an opportunity to buy a home there and send their children to high performing schools.

Instead of fixing the schools, try and get a handful of people to move to an area where the schools are already better.

I'm sure all of these people of lesser means will be very comfortable in Ballantyne, where just about everything is more expensive because of the demographics in the area.

But then there is this from CMS:

CMS comments to the petition were as follows “Adequacy of existing school capacity in this area is a significant problem. We are particularly concerned about rezoning cases where school utilization exceeds 100% since the proposed development will exacerbate this situation. Approval of this petition will increase overcrowding and/or reliance upon mobile classrooms at the schools.

Social engineering at its finest.

Edited by JayGee

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^^^This may also be a case of the market finding a way to still build mixed-use in this economy.

If banks won't easily lend to mixed-use projects, and buyers can neither afford nor qualify to mortgage "lifestyle" condos/townhomes, then affordable housing may be the ironic means to keep such projects moving. And by still building some rooftops close to storefronts, the risk of building an empty strip center goes down.

I think we can expect to see more apartments like these as the re-invention of suburban speculative retail.

Edited by southslider

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I live in the area. I have no problem with the development. But I'm perhaps a little less, uhhhh, exclusive, than the average resident in the area. Indeed, e-mails are being circulated regarding the outrage of the whole thing, and how crime will go up, etc etc. Yawn.

I'm not sure the whole "give access to better schools" is very good reasoning. I mean, why even state that as a reason? Why not just build it?

And does CMS comment about the school overcrowding for EVERY development, because every development is exacerbating the problem.

By the way, there is a Super Wal-Mart being built just 2 miles down 521 from this spot. That will give great access to affordable goods for lower-income and/or smart people.

ETA: tozmervo said in the other thread: "Actually I think moonshield's comment about public transportation is an important one that shouldn't be forgotten. These suburban areas are virtually impossible to live in without a car, and that has to be considered when developing lower income housing out there. "

There is a Ballantyne bus. I don't know anything about public transportation (other than riding LYNX), but CATS could expand that route, right, if even necessary? It currently passes 1.1 miles from this proposed development, and goes to the Sharon Rd West station on LYNX.

Edited by grodney

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I have actually used the 43 Ballantyne before, and it's not a bad route. The problem is that it's the only route. If you look at the CATS service map, you go east of Johnston Road, and there's nothing except express routes.

I should also clarify that I don't necessarily think this is a bad thing - servicing these areas would be enormously expensive for virtually no ridership. It's just not an area built for bus service.

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By the way, there is a Super Wal-Mart being built just 2 miles down 521 from this spot. That will give great access to affordable goods for lower-income and/or smart people.

The problem is that there is little transit service that far out, so "affordable" housing will still be expensive since they will have to spend a larger portion of their income on transportation.

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Social engineering at its finest.

You mean this development or the very existence of Ballantyne? Both are prime examples.

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True, affordable housing would ideally be near transit, but South Charlotte is a much larger jobs-housing mismatch problem than transit.

Besides, these apartments won't be rented by transit-dependents. While a car will be a given, renters will have a cheaper drive to retail jobs in Ballantyne/Stonecrest/Blakeney.

Anyone living in South Charlotte who doesn't want affordable housing near their home shouldn't shop anywhere near their home. Rooftops only follow market demand. Their affluent homes created the purchasing power that attracted retail that attracted the workers that is now attracting demand for worker housing.

Edited by southslider

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The center of Ballantyne is already dotted with apt complexes. Since they tend to be more upscale like the Camden properties there is no opposition. As I mentioned in another post if this complex is approved and designed to meld with it's setting I think the complaining will be somewhat ameliorated.

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Quite a different crowd here than the city-data forums.

I guess this thread could be for general Ballantyne development. Didn't the Aloft open recently? Any other development news going on? I don't often hear about the area.

Edited by InitialD

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Quite a different crowd here than the city-data forums.

I guess this thread could be for general Ballantyne development. Didn't the Aloft open recently? Any other development news going on? I don't often hear about the area.

yes, the aloft opened in November. There is new construction of a 6-story 150,000 sq. ft. office building and 1200 car parking deck being constructed now on N. community house rd.

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yes, the aloft opened in November. There is new construction of a 6-story 150,000 sq. ft. office building and 1200 car parking deck being constructed now on N. community house rd.

Yes, that is the Ballantyne Everett building. If you look at the center-right, you can see the skyline on the horizon.

Edited by NCMike1990

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I can't believe that with all the construction in that area the Community House Rd bridge over 485 has yet to be built. It would do a lot to relieve the congestion at Ballantyne Commons and Johnston Rd and would provide additional connectivity. It's tough to go anywhere in Ballantyne without passing through that one intersection. I guess the solution is to avoid Ballantyne altogether :)

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I can't believe that with all the construction in that area the Community House Rd bridge over 485 has yet to be built. It would do a lot to relieve the congestion at Ballantyne Commons and Johnston Rd and would provide additional connectivity. It's tough to go anywhere in Ballantyne without passing through that one intersection. I guess the solution is to avoid Ballantyne altogether :)

This MUMPO document lists it in the Loop Funding section as a 2011-2017 candidate project, at $8.8 million. (Listed alongside 485 widening and flyover at $52 million.)

http://www.mumpo.org/PDFs/TIP/2011-2017/CandidateProjectList.pdf

9 million is pocket change to the people that live, work, and develop there. I'm surprised they wouldn't just put up the money to improve the traffic and the quality of life for the residents, employees, and customers.

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^Just change the name of "Community House" to "Public Housing" Road. Then, the cost of the bridge should go dramatically down. At least according to the yokels.

The Observer's Tommy Tomlinson has an interesting opinion piece that equates all the publicly subsidized infrastructure (485, 521, etc.) Ballantyne has received as an "IOU" for at least some public housing:

http://www.charlotte...allantynes.html

The Observer's Mary Newsom also argues that Ballantyne has perhaps not lived up to its original promises to be more integrated:

http://marynewsom.blogspot.com/2010/02/ballantyne-affordable-housing-it-was.html

Edited by southslider

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^That goes to show you how slow the commercial real estate market is right now if this is the largest spec building(s) going up right now. Glad to see it happening, though I know we'd wish it was being built in uptown. From the sounds of it, there must be some deal in the works for a company to do an expansion in Charlotte if this much space is being built.

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Maybe Sears is seriously considering moving to NC. I know having a Fortune 100 company HQ'd in Ballantyne would be a feather in the cap of Bissell...Not to mention a feather in the cap of the metro area as a whole.

Edited by cltbwimob

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Today's CBJ is reporting that AXA Financial is unlikely to renew its Ballantyne lease next year and is looking to relocate. The article states:

AXA's lease at Ballantyne expires in 2013, and the company is looking at space elsewhere in the Charlotte market as well as in northern Lancaster County [in the EdgeWater Corporate Center]

The article ONLY discusses the Lascaster county option -- there was virtually no speculation on other Charlotte sites.

AXA has been there for a while (the late 1990s seems like an eternity ago) so its tough to divine if this is a harbinger of the future of Btyne or if AXA is just a moody company.

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Financial incentives from SC mixed with lower rental rates I would guess. AXA is a big time company, but most of these jobs are relatively low paying, though they do have some coporate support jobs there as well.

SC keeps tripping over themselves to offer incentives for low-paying white collar jobs. HSBC received a big handout, and then shuttered their mortgage facility after just a few years, and I'm pretty sure Citi and Wells are substantially smaller than what they had envisioned.

No big loss, IMO.

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Regarding the proposed 11-story tower here in the Observer the other day.  The developer submitted a 5-day expedited Land Use review yesterday.  I believe this costs more than their normal review period, so maybe they have a tenant lined up already, and want to break ground soon?  11-stories, with 1,050 parking space garage.

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A 1050 space garage sounds excessive (and no I have no idea what I'm talking about) for 11 story building, also for future buildings?

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