The members of Cape Fear REALTORS® and the Wilmington REALTORS® Foundation are constantly seeking new ways to build and strengthen our local community. One exciting example of this focus on making our community stronger is a project that we have been working on for a long time: a new town home community that will soon be constructed off Carolina Beach Road.
Located on an approximately six-acre sliver of land, Pierson Point will include 48 attached single-family homes. Designed to fill what many perceive as a gap in affordable housing, the community is intended for residents earning an area median income between 81 percent and 120 percent, as defined by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.
The rezoning to make the project a possibility was unanimously approved by New Hanover County Commissioners. The nonprofit Wilmington REALTORS® Foundation (WRF) had owned the land since at least 2018 when agent Sherri Pickard purchased and transferred it, according to property records.
For many of us who work in real estate, it’s no surprise the community is being named in honor of John Pierson, who passed away in April of 2021. Founding the WRF and serving as president for 20 years is just a small example of the work that John did to support the community.
A veteran who served his country as a US Marine for six years, completing a tour in Vietnam that culminated in the rank of Captain, John’s name is synonymous with integrity, respect and community service. This is partially why the WRF created the John Pierson Humanitarian award, naming him as the first recipient. Active in real estate for over 50 years, he also donated his time to Meals on Wheels, many other nonprofits, and the board of REALTORS®.
I like to think John would be proud of the community that bears his name. Before I get too off topic though, I want to point out that all the new town homes will include a variety of restrictive covenants. These covenants mainly limit the town homes to owner occupants and ensure they cannot be converted into vacation rentals or other forms of rental properties, as this would obviously work against the goal of providing more affordable housing opportunities here in Wilmington.
The rezoning was necessary to allow for a greater density on the narrow parcel. Under the previous zoning, 2.5 units would have been permitted per acre, or a total of 15 single-family homes for this particular site. The potential new project has eight units per acre, which is a relatively low number compared to the surroundings and many other major metropolitan areas.
The area had been zoned for lower-density residential development (R-15) since the early 1970s when water and sewer were less accessible in the area. It’s now become more common to see commercial or multi-family developments pop up along the corridor.
The Wilmington REALTORS® Foundation was established more than 25 years ago with a simple mission to help other local nonprofits. One of the most visible aspects of the organization is the REALTORS® Helping REALTORS® Fund. Established in 1999, it was created specifically to help REALTORS® in the event of a catastrophic illness.
A few of the other ways that we work to build and strengthen the local community include working to promote a vibrant economy, which in many ways begins with home ownership, and working to ensure a high quality of life, at a reasonable cost. We believe that the key to accomplishing the latter goal is to encourage broad-based taxation to support education and infrastructure (roads, water, sewer, etc.), which accommodate quality residential, commercial and industrial growth in an environmentally sensitive manner.
It is also important to note that we embrace community values. As REALTORS® we are committed to serving the community as leaders in government and service organizations and through service projects such as REALTOR® Action Day, a special designated day of community service that typically sees a high participation rate among our members.
For more information, please visit CapeFear.REALTOR or call 910-762-7400.
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