Which Triangle Municipalities Are Easiest To Develop?

If you are looking to sell or buy land in the area to develop please see my page dedicated to Wake County Land Sales.

My years of experience in this industry have resulted in having good relationships with all of the area’s town planners. I’ve learned a lot from working with them on a regular basis, and I’ve found that the best way to get what my clients want out of a piece of land is to work with the planners, and not against them. Rather than picking a fight, I prefer to ask what CAN be done with the land, rather than telling them what we would like to do. This gets us a lot farther with some local municipalities that have reputations of being difficult to work with.


Each municipality is going to be a little different from the rest, both in terms of land availability, and the  level of ease in developing the land the way you like.

Apex, for example, is incredibly easy to work with, as they have a master plan in place that dictates what can be done where, and how pieces of land can be used based on where they are on the map. Simply put, if you tell them the property, they will tell you exactly what you can do with it. There’s no confusion or uncertainty involved.


Morrisville is just a bit tighter, and will likely require a  bit of dialogue. They aren’t very restrictive, especially compared to other areas of the triangle, but they aren’t as cut and dry with how land can be used. In almost all cases, some discussion with the planner will be needed before an agreement can be made. These discussions usually end with everyone walking away happy, and rarely end without a mutually beneficial resolution.

Holly Springs

Over the last decade, Holly Springs has changed quite a bit. Ten years ago, you could do just about anything you wanted with your land. The planning office was very wide open, with very few restrictions at all. However, today they’ve become much stricter, mostly due to their explosive growth. Some might criticize them for having poorly managed that growth, which has put many neighborhoods in close proximity to commercial or industrial areas. Even so, their current planning is much better, and they are focus on current issues. While they may not be as loose as they used to be, they are still a good, cooperative municipality to work with today.

Chapel Hill and Carrboro

The toughest of tough would be the planning offices of Chapel Hill and Carrboro. They have many, many rules and restrictions for what land can and can’t be used for, and how it should be developed, if it can be at all. There are environmental rules, erosion control rules, vegetation rules, historical district rules, and more. While these limitations may seem like they don’t want any growth at all, that’s not the case at all. They can be viewed as a direct opposite of what Holly Springs was in the early 2000s. Rather than letting anything and everything go, they prefer well managed and responsible growth and development.