Durham Coca-Cola Bottling Plant's possible rezoning
A Coca-Cola Bottling plant in Durham could be set for a radical transformation.
Driving the news: The Atlanta developer Ardent Cos. submitted a rezoning request in December asking the city to allow for retail and residential uses on the nearly 12-acre property.
- Patrick Byker, a local lawyer representing Ardent, said at a neighborhood meeting late last year that his firm wants to add up to 370 apartment units, 68,000 square feet of commercial space and two dozen townhouses on the site.
- The Coca-Cola Bottling Co. announced plans to move its facilities to Apex last year. The rezoning application was first reported by Triangle Business Journal.
Why it matters: The redevelopment would place a large housing project in a section of Durham more known for strip malls, grocery stores and fast-food chains.
- Another nearby project, Aura Hillandale West, on North LaSalle Street could add a similar number of apartments.
Details: Under the submitted plans, a 25,000-square-foot grocery store and surface parking lot would front Hillsborough Road. That is on the smaller side of grocery stores, Byker told neighbors, about the size of the Durham Co-op, for example.
- The apartments would be in two five-story buildings behind the grocery store, with retail on the ground floors.
- The plan calls to demolish the bottling plant but keep the adjacent First Citizens Bank branch.
- Ardent said it plans to work with an unnamed nonprofit to make 15% of the townhomes available as affordable housing.
What's next: Byker said the timeline for construction could take several years, with site activity probably not happening until 2025.
- "It's definitely a marathon not a sprint," he said at the meeting.
Zoom out: Durham City Council has several potential rezoning cases on its radar.
- About two miles away, the owners of the old Northgate Mall are seeking a rezoning to turn the mall into a life-science campus — though it has faced intense community opposition.
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