RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Micro apartments are becoming a growing trend across the country and developers in Raleigh’s North Hills neighborhood are looking at them, too.
Kane Realty is asking the city to rezone 11 acres of land to allow 12, 30 and 40-story mixed-use buildings, and one of the plans could include microunits.
“It’s not something that has been done in the city of Raleigh, but it has been done in Durham and it has been done elsewhere in North Carolina. (I) think that it could provide a really meaningful way to make housing more attainable,” Jamie Schwedler with Parker Poe, a representative of Kane Realty, told council members at a committee last week.
Schwedler also said the affordable apartments would be up to 600 square feet in size.
“We think it really makes a meaningful step into providing not only affordable housing but housing affordability and attainability in the location that the midtown plan and the community has urged us to do,” Schwedler said.
Kane isn’t the only developer looking into microunits, though.
The Forge at Raleigh Iron Works will offer microunits as small as 430 square feet.
Larry Helfant is the chairman of the Midtown CAC and said more affordable housing is needed.
“The more you develop an area, the more people you have working in the service industry to service the various buildings and retail outlets, and the police, the emergency services none of them can afford to live in this area. We’re getting a tag of an affluent neighborhood,” said Helfant.
He says he’s pleased that the developers are providing some form of public housing but doesn’t believe microunits may be the best approach.
“The Midtown Area Plan specifies that anything greater than seven stories should have affordable housing, and we’re been trying to push all of the developments in the Midtown area, particularly those that have affordable apartments currently, to stay with the affordable housing model.”
Kane Realty did not say how much the units would cost.
It plans to discuss the rezoning again at the next council meeting on Sept. 6.