The Chapel Hill Town Council wants to create an affordable place to live, but some Chapel Hill residents are worried this means there won’t be room left for the shrinking cemetery.
In 2013, the council voted to sell nine acres of town-owned land off of Legion Road to DHIC Inc., a nonprofit organization that renovates and builds affordable apartment homes. The first phase of the project will create 80 housing units for working families, and a second phase will create rental housing for seniors.
The project was selected to receive federal tax credits to finance its construction on Aug. 17. Chapel Hill's executive director of the office of housing and community, Loryn Clark, said construction is scheduled to begin sometime in 2016.
Long before the town’s involvement with DHIC Inc., the town council promised the land, which is adjacent to the Chapel Hill Memorial Cemetery, would become space for Chapel Hill residents to rest in peace, said longtime resident and retired realtor Eunice Brock. This was about 20 years ago, she said.
“Most of the people in the town, especially if they’ve had family buried out there, expect it to just continue along on the side,” Brock said.