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Harrisburg approves 28-acre shopping center

The Harrisburg Town Council has approved Lat Purser and Associate Inc.’s rezoning petition to build a shopping center on 28 acres at the southeast corner of N.C. Highway 49 at Roberta Road. The company’s request was approved unanimously in a 7-0 vote Monday night.

The vacant plot would feature up to 127,400 square feet of commercial space, including up to 55,000 square feet for an anchor grocery store on the southeastern portion of the tract.

As part of the Harris Square development, Lat Purser will donate a 1.2 acre parcel at the northwest corner of the site to the town for a community park.

Harrisburg Planning Director Joshua Watkins said the council approved the plan after Lat Purser made a slight change to its site plan, adding cutouts at the southern end of the property so that two local landowners would have easier access to their properties.

Lat Purser requested that the 28 acres be rezoned to general commercial with conditional use from medium-density residential, which permits three single-family homes per acre. The town’s zoning and planning department found the developer’s site plan to be consistent with the Harrisburg Area Plan, and recommended approval of the rezoning.

Lat Purser’s project comes at a time when development is up significantly in Harrisburg. Housing starts have risen substantially in the last few years, and the U.S. Census Bureau figures show that the town’s population climbed to 14,132 in 2014 from 11,526 in 2010, a nearly 23 percent increase.

Lat Purser officials were unavailable for comment regarding the proposed development, which is near two other grocery stores, a Food Lion across from it on Highway 49 and a Lowes Foods off Hickory Ridge Road.

Entrances and exits to Harris Square are planned for both Roberta Road and N.C. Highway 49.

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