Development Activity

A total of 44 board action cases that went before the Planning & Zoning Commission in 2021 were ultimately approved. This was a significant rebound from the number of cases approved the previous year and was the same number as in 2017 after a three-year decline. As shown in the following chart, this was due primarily to the 30 approved zoning map amendments, which was not only the highest number in the last five years, but also the highest number of rezonings approved in a single calendar year in 15 years. This can be attributed in part to a five-year high in the number of residential rezoning cases. In addition, there has been a multiyear effort following adoption of the updated Development Ordinance in 2017 to remove improper or obsolete zoning districts that were out of sync with existing land uses and land use policy, which accounted for seven of the cases. There were also small increases in the number of approved special use permits, land use plan amendments, and street abandonments in 2021 compared to the previous year, and the same number of text amendments, although these were generally in line with a typical year.

Dev Activity - Board Action Cases

The total acreage approved for rezoning also increased in 2021, as shown in the following chart, with the amount of residential, non-residential and institutional acreage all up compared to the previous year, as well as a small mixed-use project being approved for the first time in three years.  Residential acreage was the largest category by far in 2020 with more than double the amount of any other year in the past five years.  The amount of non-residential and institutional acreage rezoned also increased, but not to levels seen before the Covid-19 pandemic.  As is the case in most years, there was only a very small amount of mixed-use zoning approved, with the primary exception being 2017 when this category was significantly higher due to the adoption of a Mixed Use Downtown zoning district in the vicinity of Truist Point stadium. It should be noted that these numbers do not include the acreage rezoned as part of the previously mentioned comprehensive zoning map amendment effort, which rezoned approximately 800 acres across a vareity of use categories in 2021.  It also does not include zoning map amendment cases that resulted in minor changes to previously approved conditions that did not fundamentally alter the allowed uses of a property.

Dev Activity - Acreage Rezoned chart
Dev Activity - Acreage Rezoned table

A good indicator of the amount of development occurring in the city is the number of final plats, site plans and group developments approved that resulted in new residential lots/units or additional building square footage. The table below shows the types of major projects approved over the past three years by land use category. In 2021, the total number of approved land development projects was higher than the previous year and similar to the number from two years ago. However, the number of new residential lots and units approved, including detached single-family homes, attached single-family townhomes, and multi-family apartments was the highest it has been since before the Great Recession, led by the large number of detached single-family residential lots approved.

Dev Activity - Dev Approvals table

In addition, the overall square footage of non-residential development approved in 2021 more than doubled compared to last year's total and was almost equal to the pre-pandemic level seen in 2019.  As shown in the following chart, this was largely due to a significant rebound in the amount of industrial square footage approved, while there were also smaller increases in the square footage of approved institutional and office projects.  On the other hand, there was a substantial decrease in approved commercial square footage, continuing a trend seen over the past five years.  These figures are relatively low compared to 2018, but that year saw a greater than normal amount of institutional and industrial square footage approved, including an expansion of the River Landing retirement community, the new Qubein Arena and Conference Center on the campus of High Point University, and the Amada manufacturing and technical center campus in north High Point.  

Also of note in 2021 was the approval of a mixed-use project with plans for retail on the ground floor and apartments on the upper floors that is being built by Peters Development at 650 N. Main Street.  It joins another one of their projects that was previously approved across the street for offices with restaurant/retail.  This type of office building with commercial on the ground floor has become increasingly popular in the area around Truist Point stadium with projects such as Congdon Yards opening in 2021 and The Outfields slated to open in the summer of 2022.  However, they are not counted in the mixed-use category because they do not have a residential component.

Dev Activity - Non-res sq ft

For more information about land development activity that has occurred in the city, click on the image below to launch an interactive dashboard that shows the locations of all the approved site plans, subdivision plats, and group development projects that have been submitted from August 2015, when the City switched to an online application submittal and review system known as Accela, through the end of 2021.

Dev Activity - Land Dev Dashboard
Additional Resources:
  • Board of Adjustment: agendas provide additional information about cases, including the name of the applicant, location, description of proposal, and staff report
  • website that serves as the City's one source development guide to help navigate the process for developing and building in High Point
  • Historic Preservation Commission: agendas provide information about design review of properties within the City's local historic districts
  • Public Records Search: allows a user to request public records via an online request