Clifton and Leah Garrett Farm

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The former Clifton and Leah Garrett Farm, one of the last remaining examples (if not the last one itself) of a traditional family farm near the city, was sold to a developer – Trammel Crow Residential (TCR) – which then proceeded with its plan to convert the site into "Alexan Garrett Farms".

Of the original farm, the development plan called for the preservation of 26 acres west of Mud Creek (wooded area adjacent to New Hope Creek) and an existing farm pond. The original farmhouse was moved to another site (currently unknown) by a third party, at that party's expense.

This plan was approved by the Durham Planning Commission, 13-0.

Preservation Durham has officially objected to the plan.


For those of us who have quietly said "aagh, nooo, not another one!" each time a pretentious new cul-de-sac subdivision (Loch'n'Ora, Carillon Place, Everwood...) sprang up along formerly pristine byways, this one is kind of the steel anvil that broke the camel's back. If any of these land transfers should not have gone through, it would be this one (although there are certainly plenty of others which seem equally senseless but just not as significant, e.g. the destruction of the nice old one-story house on the corner of Durham-Chapel Hill Road and Watkins, bulldozed 2007-11-12).

The following questions come to mind, with regard to this specific issue:

  • Why were there no dissenting votes at all?
  • Why didn't they at least require that TCR preserve the farmhouse?
  • ...and of course the usual litany of questions which come up (and are never answered) with regard to the ongoing paving and lawnifying of Durham area land.

Related Pages


  • 2007-10-29 CLIFTON AND LEAH GARRETT FARM: built 1934, demolished 2007-8
    • I totally want to smack the anonymous troll who said "It is always astonishing to me to hear people complain about development and accuse developers of being "greedy", then, promote regulations that would undermine the ability of those same developers to profit from the projects they have taken the time, effort and money to make into a reality." That's like arguing that people should stop whining about thieves who invest the time and effort to get into your house, lovingly remove your stuff, and make it earn money instead of just sitting around. How dare we undermine such entrepreneurial spirit? --Woozle 20:38, 15 April 2010 (UTC)
  • 2007-11-20 Say Goodbye to the Garrett Farm: "It's unfortunate that the developer couldn't see the economic benefit of distinguishing their product with some authenticity - and the council didn't feel that saving this little farmhouse was a worthy concession to see a bit of rural Durham preserved."
  • 2008-07-22 Clifton and Leah Garrett Farmhouse on the Move: but at least the farmhouse was saved by being moved elsewhere (not at the developer's expense, of course)