New Developments Could Bring 1,000 New Students to Union Co.

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by Audrina Bigos
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UNION COUNTY, NC -- Political drama in Indian Trail Tuesday night forced town council to cancel a public hearing about a proposed apartment complex. Residents and the mayor say the project would cause more problems in a county already battling school overcrowding.

Tuesday night, Indian Trail Mayor Michael Alvarez said, "Council members Gary Savoe and Gordon Daniels will not be attending tonight's meeting, therefore we do not have a quorum and the meeting will be cancelled."  The council drama means a vote on the Towne Centre Apartments project is in limbo.

The 378-unit complex is planned for the corner of Plyler Road and Unionville-Indian Trail Road.
"We now have time to prepare to fight against this, and also we now have another example of Union County government not working," said Laars Knapp, a Weddington High School senior.
Students like Knapp, who've been very vocal in the redistricting fight, say the apartments would make school overcrowding worse.
 
Towne Centre and three other complexes already in the works could potentially bring a  thousand new students to union county schools.  "For the last apartment complex that was proposed, Glenn Oaks, more than 90 percent of the people wrote and spoke out against it, however, it was rubber-stamped approved and went on through, and that's frustrating," said Jerry Morse, an Indian Trial resident.
 
The school district says those new students would go to Porter Ridge Middle and High Schools.  In a letter, a school representative says in part, “Because these two schools are near the watch level, a large development runs the risk of pushing them near or above the cap levels.”
 
"I absolutely do not want this. I would like to see the infrastructure, the schools, get caught up," said Morse. 
 
The public hearing on the project has been pushed to April 8.
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