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Development Approved For Gaston’s Former Howe Dairy Farm

March 7, 2022

Gaston Business Association

Janiya Winchester

The Gaston Gazette
The Gastonia Planning Commission approved a rezoning request to allow a developer to build hundreds of homes at the former Howe Dairy Farm. The final decision now goes to City Council in April.

Arizona-based real estate company Suncrest Real Estate and Land plans to build more than 700 single-family homes and 160 townhomes on 325 acres of former farmland off Neal Hawkins Road, near Martha Rivers Park.

The city's Planning Commission approved the plan last week despite some opposition for neighboring property members.

A City of Gastonia Public Hearing sign at the end of Howe Dairy Road Monday afternoon, Feb. 28, 2022.

Some residents living nearby the development in the Riverwood Plantation Subdivision have concerns about the development’s potential traffic impact.

“It’s already pretty congested here,” said Lee Brooks, the Riverwood Plantation property manager.

Brooks has lived in the Riverwood Plantation Subdivision for eight years.

“I just don’t think we have the infrastructure with the traffic on Neal Hawkins Road,” said Brooks. “Maybe if it was a four-lane road but that many houses and that traffic wouldn’t be good.”

Brooks argued the idea wasn't bad, but that it just calls for too many homes..

“I think it’s perfect for homes but I don’t think it’s a good idea to have that many homes,” said Brooks.

Jessica Underwood, a Riverwood Plantation resident, was surprised by the outcome of the rezoning request.

"I was hoping the planning commission would've listened to the citizens of Gaston County on this," said Underwood. "I just know that the traffic is going to increase tremendously."

Underwood hopes Gastonia City Council will come to a different decision.

Suncrest Real Estate has not responded to requests for comment.

The developers will go before City Council in April for the city’s decision on annexation and zoning of the land.

Reach Janiya Winchester at 704-869-1842 or



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