Chapel Hill News

Chapel Hill council to discuss possibilities for Legion land

The Town Council will meet Wednesday, March 16, to talk about the future of the American Legion Post 6 property for sale on Legion Road.

“Given the size and location of the Legion parcel, members of Town Council and I are in agreement that it is in the town’s best interest for us to think carefully and strategically about possible uses for this site,” Mayor Pam Hemminger said in an email response to interested residents last week.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. in Meeting Room B at the Chapel Hill Public Library.

The council, while it typically doesn’t take public comment during work sessions, will hold a short public comment period at the end of the meeting, Hemminger said. Town staff also will provide council with a summary and analysis of questions, concerns and ideas the town has received, she said.

The previous council passed in November on an option to buy the 36-acre property at 1714 Legion Road under a 2005 first right of refusal agreement with the American Legion.

Angry residents have questioned the decision – made in closed session without public input and just days after the Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt and two council members lost the election. Officials said the town didn’t have $10 million to buy the land.

Residents have asked the new council to reconsider the decision, suggesting the land could be used for a community park, an indoor sports center or commercial space. Woodfield Investments is under contract to buy the land if the council approves a plan for up to 600 luxury apartments and an office building.

The plan, if an application is filed, would face town advisory boards, public meetings and Town Council hearings. A rezoning also would be necessary, since the land is zoned for residential use.

The American Legion plans to use the money from selling the land to find a new home and build another post that could serve veterans of all ages and their families.

Tammy Grubb: 919-829-8926, @TammyGrubb