Foster Creek has new developer

Published 12:28 pm Tuesday, July 23, 2013

No changes in owner, master plan

The Town of Columbus was notified recently that Foster Creek Development has new developers, Reader and Partners, out of Raleigh.

Foster Creek, owned by American Land Fund, previously had Forest City Land Group as its developers, with Scott Kilby working with Columbus for several years on the project.

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Columbus Town Manager Jonathan Kanipe told town council during its Aug. 18 meeting that he has met with Jeff Reader and the company’s senior vice-president Dean Barberree regarding their plans for the development.

Kanipe said the owner of the property remains the same, as well as the development’s master plan, special use permit and development agreement.

“The only difference at this stage is that Reader and Partners is the development company charged with the implementation of those plans and not Forest City Land Group,” Kanipe told council. “Staff will work diligently with Reader and Partners over the next few months to get them completely up to speed on the area and prior agreements.”

Councilwoman Margaret Metcalf expressed concern that new developers will take more of the town’s time getting them up to speed on the project. Kanipe said he doesn’t think they will be calling with questions and the development’s attorney, Alan Peterson, is still with the company.

Kanipe said the reason the new developers came to Columbus was to introduce themselves and get to know the town.

“We provided them extensive information on the plans and agreements already in place and discussed their plans for the development which are no different than those previously planned by Forest City,” Kanipe said. “Certainly, they may take a different approach to managing or marketing the property, but I do not feel that this will be anything significantly different from how Forest City Land Group would have handled the property.”

In 2011, Columbus approved a development agreement with Foster Creek, located off Houston Road and Hwy. 108. The development is planned at 687 dwelling units on over 1,065 acres.

Columbus recently approved the voluntary annexation of another 2.66 acres into the development as well as zoning for the new property.

Construction in the development has not yet begun.