New things continue to pop up all over town. There are road improvement projects, new building and municipal construction projects. While information on many of these projects has been posted online and discussed on Facebook pages, we will collect as many as possible here in one place for you to review.
Fuquay-Varina Arts Center (pictured)
The construction on the Fuquay-Varina Arts Center on the corner of Vance Street and Fuquay Avenue is coming along well. The building has undergone a complete transformation , and the addition of a full theater wing is fully in progress. Much work has gone into renovating the existing space, as well as the infrastructure around it. As much as we miss Stars Theater and the old Belk retail store, the Arts Center will be a welcome addition to the downtown plan with its expanded size and offerings.
Downtown Development Project Update
As a recap, the Town of Fuquay-Varina has embarked on a major development project in the downtown Fuquay retail district, encompassing a chunk of a city block on the corner of Academy Street and Main Street. The town has acquired property or the rights to property in that area, and town staff have been working to identify a developer that can create a design that meets the specific needs of the community. At last report, town staff have been working through the applications of several real estate development companies that have expressed serious interest in the project, and are on the verge of making an award announcement to the public on their choice to move forward with the design.
Working with UNC School of Government’s Development Finance Initiative (DFI), the town has developed a plan to combine retail, office, residential, and (maybe) civic space on the 3.5-acre site that includes the current police department. Conceptual drawings show that a parking garage is one of the expected uses of that acreage as well. The next step will be for a developer to take the conceptual work already done by consultants in the process and create a viable design that meets all the criteria that is outlined for this project.
Lincoln Heights Elementary School (pictured)
LHES is nearing the end of its lengthy renovation process and the kids are not the only ones who are excited to see things wrapping up on Bridge Street. The street has undergone major construction on the railroad crossing and sidewalk improvements this year, as well, making things a little unsettled in that area. As things wrap up on the school construction project, and the remaining buildings are taken down, the neighborhood will be able to truly enjoy the immensely improved school facilities and landscaping in that area.
Fuquay-Varina Branch Library
Plans are under review for a new location of the Wake County Public Library. The plan includes a 3,000-square foot building, an entrance plaza, and a parking lot. The new library will be located on a 6.36 acre parcel on Bramblehill Drive and East Academy Street (behind the SW Wake Regional Center off of SE Judd Parkway.
Willow Spring High School
One project generating a great deal of excitement in Fuquay-Varina is the construction of the new Willow Spring High School on Old Honeycutt Road. According to Wake County Schools, construction is right on schedule – walls are going up and its beginning to look like a real building instead of just mountains of dirt! Opening date is still expected to be Fall of 2019, when Fuquay-Varina students move in for a two-year stay while their school is completely renovated.
Development is underway currently for the infrastructure for a large commercial project at the corner of Hwy 55 Bypass and Old Powell Rd. (adjacent to Sheetz). This project is being developed by Kennedy Properties and construction is currently underway to build three entrances off of Hwy 55, resulting in lane closures during the day along Hwy 55 South. The end result will be 50+ acres of mixed use retail and residential, with an anchor tenant that has yet to be named.
At the time of this article, the ALDI renovation is almost completed, and the store is expected to open on November 2. The expansion, which was completed in two phases, required the store to close for a number of weeks while they added 3,400 square feet to the rear of the building, as well as improvements to the parking lot.
State Employees Credit Union
A site plan has been approved for a new State Employees Credit Union facility on Hwy 401 at Banks Road. The new building will be 10,000 sf.
National Tire & Battery
Have you wondered what is going up in the outparcel near Home Depot? Construction is underway for National Tire & Battery in the Walmart Shopping Center. The plan features a 6,900 square foot building. This is the second outparcel built and completed in this area in 2017.
McCormick Medical Building
This project is located directly behind Four Oaks Bank and adjacent to Academy East Veterinary Hospital on Attain Street (lots 401 and 405). The medical office facility will be 11,300 sf feet and will include 71 parking spaces.
The Learning Experience
The site plan for a new Learning Experience childcare facility on a commercial outparcel lot adjacent to The Villages of Marquee Station on Rt. 401 has been approved. The location makes this convenient for the professional families that live in the 5 Points area.
Bengal Town Center
A new commercial development project at the corner of Stewart Street and Judd Parkway will turn 18+ acres into 13 separate tracts, to be developed in the future for a variety of uses including office, commercial, mixed-use, apartments, townhomes and civic space.
Destination Community Church of God
A site plan has been approved for Destination Community Church of God that plans to locate at the corner of Holland Road and SE Judd Parkway. The proposed 12,000 square foot building is on a 2.63-acre lot.
The explosion in residential development continues in SW Wake County. Fuquay-Varina currently has 45 subdivisions in various stages of construction, from infrastructure completion and the beginning of house construction to the build-out of final phases. Partin Place, Sunset Bluffs, and Tyler Park are expanding development, while new subdivisions like Union Station on Coley Farm Road, Trilogy Farms on Lake Wheeler Road, and Avery Crossing on Phelps Farms Rd.
In addition to activity on Mims Rd., Coley Farm Rd., several places on Judd Parkway, and Fleming Loop Rd., there are several unique projects that deserve mention. The Basal Creek Development is an 85.8 acre tract that will be developed for a variety of uses including office, commercial, mixed-use, apartments, and townhomes. This new project will be located just off Hwy 55 behind Triple Barrel Tavern on Schnapps Road. Another new subdivision named Adalyn Place will be located at the intersection of E. Academy Street and SE Judd Parkway. Plans for that project include the extension of Academy Street, which should be interesting. The old Hidden Valley golf course on South Hwy 55 heading toward Angier is being converted into a subdivision with 505 homes on almost 215 acres between Hwy 55 and Purfoy Road.
If you include subdivisions already completed, those building currently, and those in the initial stages of development (have submitted plans to the town for review), Fuquay-Varina now has over 100 subdivisions and climbing. These added rooftops, although they add cars to our roads, also make Fuquay-Varina much more attractive for those sought-after retail and commercial and retail establishments people say they want to locate here.