Beacon Village Neighborhood Blog

Beacon Village Neighborhood Blog

Welcome to Beacon Village Neighborhood Blog!

**Missed the Community Meetings on 2/28/24? Here's What You Need to Know!**

On Wednesday, February 28, over 200 neighbors, outdoor enthusiasts, and friends gathered at the Swannanoa Methodist Church to hear about the new Beacon Village project happening at the site of the old Beacon Blanket Factory, a 40 acre, decades dormant brownfield that will soon see a new life.

For an overview of the project, please see this article that was published in the Valley Echo here.

If you weren't able to attend the recent community meeting where some crucial questions were asked regarding the Beacon Village project, don't worry! We've gathered the key information for you.

The Beacon team introduced themselves and provided an overview of Phase I of the project which begins in early March with dirt moving on the site. The team includes founding owners of Quility, national insurtech company that has been located in Beacon Village since 2009, parent company of Symmetry.

Meredith emphasized the importance of sharing the plan with the neighborhood first - this project is prioritizing the amenities first, which is an atypical way of building out. It is important to the team to bring these community amenities to provide fun and benefits to the neighborhood and larger community, and bring vitality to the area. Future phases will include residential, business and industrial components. 

Casey dove into the details about the world-class, 4.5 acre Velosolutions bike park. The park will be paved and feature slopestyle, jumpline and pumptrack lines. It will be accessible to riders of all skill levels and users, including push bikes, mountain bikes, one wheels, skates, skateboards, and adaptive wheelchairs.

We wrapped up with questions from the community. We’ve summarized them here. If you have additional questions, please reach out via the contact form, and take a look at our FAQs on the website for more info.

Traffic Concerns

One concern raised during the meeting was about traffic and parking along the streets. We are currently working on a comprehensive plan to address traffic flow into the site; currently the plan is for all traffic to enter and exit on Whitson Avenue. Stay tuned for more details, and we appreciate your patience as we finalize these plans.

Safety Measures

Ensuring the safety of our community members is our top priority. We are studying best practices from similar projects and will implement Buncombe County approved lighting on-site. The bike park will have a surrounding fence. Additionally, our dedicated staff will be managing both the bike park and event lawn to create a secure environment.

Permeable Site

The Beacon Village project aims to make the site more environmentally friendly. Previously 87% impermeable, we are introducing permeable surfaces, native plants, landscaping, stream daylighting, and other beautification features. This initiative aligns with our commitment to sustainability and enhancing the natural aspects of the property.

Play Options for All Ages

We understand that not everyone is into biking or scootering. That's why we've designed the project to include a natural walking path and an event lawn. These areas provide opportunities for outdoor engagement suitable for all ages and abilities.

Hours of the Event Lawn and Bike Park

We are currently finalizing the details regarding the operating hours for the Event Lawn and Bike Park. Rest assured, we will adhere to all Buncombe County ordinances regarding noise. 

Recognition of Cherokee and Other Place Histories

We acknowledge the importance of recognizing and respecting the history of the land. We are actively exploring ways to pay tribute to the Cherokee Nation and other significant place histories. Your input on this matter is highly valued.

Neighborhood LIghting 

Just days before the meeting, street lights that kept the lower village lit at night were turned off.  According to many, the lights were installed in the village by the textile factory in 2001 and continued to illuminate our streets long after the account was abandoned. Numerous neighbors have since voiced concerns about nighttime safety both on local Facebook groups and at the community meeting.  We’re looking into whether this is something we can assist with as we start the construction process. Lighting the area will be important for safety.

Construction Process and Contaminated Dirt

We are working with the NC DEQ under a strict environmental management plan to revitalize the brownfield and put the property safely back into use in the community. For those curious or that have concerns about contaminated dirt on the brownfield, we encourage you to check out the FAQ section we've already created. It provides a link with detailed information on how the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality will oversee the construction process and address any potential environmental issues.

Stay tuned for more updates on Beacon Village!! It was so wonderful to meet so many neighbors and new friends last week.  We appreciate your involvement and look forward to creating a vibrant and inclusive community space together. If you have more questions or suggestions, feel free to reach out – your feedback matters!



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