New projects pop up on 421
by Allison Haver
According to town of Boone Planning and Inspections Director Bill Bailey, the recent growth of that side of town is due to land being less expensive and being ideal for development.
"If you really look at the geography of the town of Boone, it's the right place for development," Bailey said.
With U.S. 321 and N.C. 105 becoming more and more congested, Bailey said developers who still want to be "centrally located" are looking along the U.S. 421 corridor now.
"People who want to be close to the center or to town because of the university are starting to look toward that area (U.S. 421)," he said.
Bailey also said that if the town of Boone approves the water intake project, the main line would go through the area, too, attracting future developers to that part of town.
The intake would draw as much as 4 million gallons of water per day from an the South Fork New River near Todd, which would then be transmitted along Brownwood Road and U.S. 421 back to Boone.
"It wouldn't surprise me to see Starbucks or Krispy Kreme come into the area," Bailey said.
"I also wouldn't be surprised to see New Market Centre redevelop," he said.
Bojangles' has recently been built in a previously vacant lot off U.S. 421 adjacent to Advanced Auto Parts.
The restaurant sign indicates the establishment will open in five days, and according to Bailey, the plan was to open before Watauga High School started classes in August to cater to that market of high school students.
A Bubbles Carwash is currently under construction adjacent to the Bojangles' and, according to Bailey is slated to open in the winter.
A Hampton Inn is also under construction in a vacant lot next to the Hess gas station on U.S. 421 across from where the Bubbles Carwash will be, according to Bailey.
A housing development, Watauga Green, is also under construction on Clawson Street, which is almost directly behind Bojangles'.
"It's a true affordable housing development because it is receiving tax credits from the state," Bailey said.