The Fayetteville Housing Authority Board at its late March special meeting (showing on City 16 Government Channel noon today) was still talking about buying 7 acres of mostly wetland between Ninth and Eleventh streets east of South Washington Avenue and west of South Wood Avenue.
The price of $250,000 is extremely high because of the environmental damage it would cause and the cost of providing the infrastructure to allow a significant amount of building there. Except for the higher portion where homes stood in the past along South Washington Avenue, almost none of the 7-acre-parcel should be developed. It is a significant drainage area to the south. The increase in flooding would affect not only some privately owned homes but also some property owned by the housing authority that is already slated for development.
The highest and best use of at least half of that land is as a protected flood plain that would remain vegetated for urban forest and wildlife habitat. It constitutes a significant part of south Fayetteville's green infrastructure.
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The marker on the map is at the intersection of Ninth Street and South Washington Avenue. The 7.9-acre parcel the board is discussing buying is to the right. In the meeting, it was pointed out to the group that there is standing water on the open land but no one pointed out the importance of leaving the lowest part of the land alone to protect the watershed and the property downstream from flooding.
The warning was on the table.