The History

The Site

101 Sportsmanship Way, southwest of the intersection with Anchor Creek Way, between Main Street and the N.C. 55 Bypass.

Size: 42 acres

From Landfill Operations to Athletic Complex
The athletic complex site was to have been used in connection with operations at the nearby South Wake Landfill. The site was part of a 62-acre tract that Wake County owned for more than two decades, intending to use it to dig out dirt to use to cover garbage at the landfill each day.

Town leaders resolved to do what they could to remove the possibility of fill-dirt mining on the site. They were concerned about the presence of heavy machinery, dust, noise and traffic along Main Street. They also felt better uses existed for property along a primary route into downtown. A park was a favored option.

In early 2012, Town staff began exploring the county’s willingness to sell the 62-acre tract, which was known as the “borrow pit” for the landfill. The county was amenable to selling the land to the Town for parks and recreation.

Appraising the Property
A certified appraisal of the property showed the land value had risen to $65,000 an acre from the county’s original purchase price of $6,000 per acre 20 years earlier.

County officials also wanted to ensure that they could either obtain the expected amount of fill dirt from the site or earn enough from selling the land to buy dirt elsewhere.

Arranging the Sale
The Town agreed to purchase approximately 42 acres of the county-owned property, leaving about 20 acres on the northern portion for a possible future school site.

The Town agreed to pay $48,700 per acre, which is well below the appraised price of $65,000 per acre. County officials said the $48,700 per acre price enabled the county to recoup its original investment plus have enough money to purchase fill dirt elsewhere for use at the landfill.

The Town paid $253,000 at closing (42 acres at $6,000 per acre) and will pay $1,805,271 over 10 years at no interest (42 acres at $42,700 per acre).