Real Estate

Project planned for prime commercial property in Cornelius

The White House Gardens business currently operates on the site

July 30. By Dave Vieser. Developer Jake Palillo is proposing a 252 unit multi-family complex along with retail and commercial on the White House Garden property adjacent to the Wher-Rena Boatland on West Catawba Avenue. The proposal went before the Cornelius Pre Development Committee this week.

There may be some rough water ahead.

“This may not work right now,” said Mayor Woody Washam. “But it sure could generate a healthy discussion among our planning board members and commissioners,” he added.

Washam: May cause ‘healthy discussion’

Palillo is betting on a growing demand for smaller homes, with fewer worries about upkeep and maintenance.

In addition to the 252 units, Palillio plans to set aside about 5,000 square feet for commercial use, including a pub-style restaurant.

The residential units would be contained in three separate multi-story structures set back from West Catawba and built so that they surround and open up into an interior courtyard in the middle of the complex. Two retail/commercial buildings would be closer to West Catawba.

Concerns arose from several other committee members besides Washam. “Connectivity with walkways and crossing West Catawba jump out to me as major issues” said Scott Higgins.

Town Manager Andrew Grant suggested that more commercial and less residential might be more appropriate.

Planning Director Aaron Tucker reminded the developer that the NCDOT may be a major stumbling block in light of their delay in starting several area traffic improvements, most notably the widening of West Catawba Avenue.

Currently the site is undeveloped except for the White House Gardens, an outlet for fountains, statues and planters, as well as a boat repair shop on Junker Drive, behind the White House Gardens.


27 Responses to “Project planned for prime commercial property in Cornelius”

  1. This complex could potentially put 500 more students into the school system, easily. 500 students is usually another school. Maybe they should break ground on a school and contribute to it along with widening the roads. You can’t pull out taking a left already down there, how on earth would 500 more cars be able to? Bad idea!

    Posted by Doreen | July 30, 2020, 2:08 pm
  2. Catawba Ave does not need this!!
    The traffic is already ridiculous.

    Posted by Renae R Deal | July 30, 2020, 7:35 pm
  3. The last thing we need is apartment style housing in Catawba.

    Posted by Christopher | July 30, 2020, 8:30 pm
  4. This area is already heavily saturated with enough Apt Complexes and Commercial business and Restaurants. My God ‘Don’t you think that’s enough?’. People have moved down her e to enjoy a certain quality of life and living space. Yet not live stacked on top of each other like sardens, this is not NYC.

    Posted by L. Gagora | July 30, 2020, 8:39 pm
  5. Ridiculous. We don’t want to be in NYC.

    Posted by Chrissy | July 30, 2020, 9:27 pm
  6. I agree with the comments already submitted. The infrastructure does not support this proposal and we don’t want more development in the area. Over population causes more congestion and more crime that Cornelius can not sustain. Plus we live in this beautiful quaint town for a reason and that’s because we do not want to live in a big city like Charlotte.

    Posted by Jackie | July 30, 2020, 9:41 pm
  7. Cornelius is five years behind on infrastructure. They have never understood the value of a legitimate architectural review board or civic beautification. It’s a bunch of real estate hacks Washum each other’s hands.
    Widen the roads build more parks and keep air rights to a maximum of three stories. This is not New Jersey.

    Posted by David Hynes | July 31, 2020, 12:16 pm
  8. I agree 100%on all the coments, it is not what we need in a high traffic are that we already are having to deal with. We have more people then roads now.

    Posted by Becky vigliotti | July 31, 2020, 2:19 pm
  9. Why does this town continiously fail to get anything unique, instead just keeps fueling the multi-family and franchise cookie cutter businesses? Also there is the obvious overcrowded schools and traffic to boot.

    Posted by Scott Boardman | July 31, 2020, 8:47 pm
  10. This is the same builder as Bailey’s Glen. He still has lots to do there, lots of construction quality issues, and management style issues. Why let that repeat itself again in this town? That level of density is nuts on Catawba. The traffic is already a nightmare almost constantly in that area. Especially after exon put all those houses in off Nantz. .

    Posted by Anna James | July 31, 2020, 11:21 pm
  11. We have been in Cornelius less than a year and are looking to possibly move out already. The overcrowded schools ALONE should stop this in its tracks. Where will these kids go to school? The traffic on Catawba/West Catawba is ridiculous and I avoid anything over there at all costs.

    What a way to take a town on the verge of becoming a over-populated city and pushing it right over to a junk hole.

    Do they Mayor and the zoning department not car about Cornelius?!

    Posted by Trisha | August 1, 2020, 8:07 am
  12. The population of Cornelius is already in the 30,000 range. How much of a population increase can the town continue to support. ?The existing infrastructure cannot support this project and the last thing we need is lower cost high volume housing in the community.We are already saturated with commercial building and an abundance of rental units . We do not need more.

    The Planning Board should start saying “NO” rather than “YES.” to every potential building project that is proposed.

    Posted by Patricia Grisanti | August 1, 2020, 8:20 am
  13. This is not something that the residents of Lake Norman Cove would accept. Harborview is a private street that would be inundated with traffic wishing to avoid the stoplight at Jetton.

    There is too much traffic now on Catawba that would be exasperated by this project. Widen Catawba first before any new high density construction.

    Posted by robert kirsch | August 1, 2020, 3:51 pm
  14. This is a terrible idea. When the toll road was added on 77, part of the agreement was no parallel roads can be expanded. Catawba is already in constant gridlock. This is just an awful idea for the town of Cornelius to add more homes when we cannot expand infrastructure.

    Posted by Brandon | August 1, 2020, 10:51 pm
  15. Planning needs to take into consideration the residents quality of life. Cramming more & more construction along Catawba is dangerous. Traffic on Catawba is at a standstill most days. There is also plans for more construction at the other end of Westmoreland and plans to open it to 77. Planning needs only to add better roads, wider roads more open space, lower tax base and improve our quality of life not jeopardize it.

    Posted by Pam Liguori | August 2, 2020, 8:12 am
  16. Well folks, it’s all about who you elect. Maybe when you start electing different people to represent you and your concerns, then you will stop getting these kbonehead ideas and over building. You vote for the same people over and over again, yet complain about the decisions that are being made. Maybe if you changed who you elected, then you might get some different outcomes.

    Posted by Gjandy | August 2, 2020, 1:08 pm
  17. With a plan for something similar to this at the old farm off Westmoreland? Stop the madness, stand with the people that elected you, we do not want more development!!!! Just stop!!!

    Posted by Nancy | August 3, 2020, 8:30 am
  18. Sounds like the worst idea possible…Cornelius needs to stop over-building and just cancel this nightmare crap (junk)before it is built. Why would Cornelius need smaller houses? If you want a small affordable house, look elsewhere-Cornelius is not the place people look when wanting lower-income homes.
    I have heard very negative things about this developer/builder as well…you will be sorry if this happens, but luckily most people seem to be against it, so it sounds like it will not even be an issue!

    Posted by N.B. | August 3, 2020, 9:13 am
  19. The board must realize that less density is a big plus, and stop the madness of building something on every square inch. Here on smith circle , floral lane intersection some half baked so called developer wanted to cram 14 houses on the smith property. Did not happen. But now they managed to find another so called developer who has managed to stick two houses so close the neighbors will be able to stick their hands out and shake. This is on the corner of smith and the new road I think called Nellie Potts. A nice little park in her honer would have been a whole lot better. One of the reasons this area dud so good with covid 19 is we are not overcrowded, and we need to keep it that way. You all saw what happened at the home on 115. Classis example of what can happen with crowding. To the board stop the madness. This is not what we need or want

    Posted by Harry A . Saake | August 3, 2020, 12:56 pm
  20. The city government of Cornelius needs to please read all of these comments and also the ones where this was shared on Facebook and understand what your constituents really want! Because this is not it!!!

    Posted by Nancy kuzniar | August 3, 2020, 1:21 pm
  21. This town is driven on real estate. Ever since Duke built the lake. When I was a kid we had less than 2500 people here. Real estate drives our town. If people would pay more attention to our Town Board Meetings that are streamed on FB Live. People would know more of what is going on.

    Posted by Franklin | August 3, 2020, 1:26 pm
  22. Absolutely idiotic move regarding traffic, school, population, health etc. The only person who profits are the greedy home builders who don’t care about Cornelius. If toll roads, I77 and diamond pattern aren’t enough, now some selfish capitalist trying to suffocate our beautiful small town of Cornelius! Keep our small town safe.
    Proud Cornelius Resident

    Posted by Larry | August 4, 2020, 10:47 am
  23. Bad idea ! The area is congested enough, the quality of life is going downhill fast. Eventually Catawba is going to be bumper to bumper from Sam Furr to Main St. What happened to the “small town feel” that people used to talk about ? It’s going , going, gone !

    Posted by Rob Fasano | August 4, 2020, 12:12 pm
  24. Typical developer plan to maximize their bottom line with no regard for what’s best for the town as a whole. I know and like Jake, but hope the board sends them back to the drawing board to come up with a plan that enhances our great town.

    Posted by Jay | August 7, 2020, 10:16 am
  25. This is a rotten idea for that area – for all the stated reasons. Mr. Palillo needs to FINISH what he started in Bailey’s Glen years ago. He also has a large senior apartment complex before the Huntersville Boards. Enough is enough!

    Posted by JC | August 7, 2020, 1:23 pm
  26. Mr. Palillo also has a large apartment complex for seniors isolated on Hwy73 west of Hwy 115 before the Huntersville Boards. When is enough, enough? He needs to finish what he’s started before planning something else.

    Posted by Louise | August 7, 2020, 1:27 pm
  27. If you want a small affordable house, look elsewhere-Cornelius is not the place people look when wanting lower-income homes.

    Posted by villa shomal | September 13, 2023, 2:50 am

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