The site for another new housing development near Jamestown– just north of the intersection of Penny Road and East Fork Road – is being cleared and it, like the many other recent developments, will have an impact on area schools. In this most recent case, perhaps the most affected school will be Florence Elementary, just across Penny Road from the new development. Older students will attend Welborn Middle and Andrews High schools in High Point.
An article in a local newspaper in 2018 announced that Greensboro-based Keystone Group, Inc., was planning construction of up to 470 townhomes and apartments on approximately 39 acres. The apartments would be similar to Keystone's James Landing development in Jamestown and the townhomes similar to Keystone's The Trellises in High Point. Calls to Keystone's office for an update were not returned.
In August 2018, Keystone received rezoning approval from the High Point City Council for the property at 1761 Penny Road from Low Density Residential to Medium Density Residential. It also received rezoning approval from a Residential Single Family-3 District to a Conditional Zoning Residential District for 1761 and 1781 Penny Road.
In September 2018, Briggs Development Trust, owner of the property, received voluntary contiguous annexation of approximately 38 acres at the same location as Keystone's rezoning. The Trust planned to develop a mixed residential development of more than 400 multifamily apartments and townhomes on the site.
Briggs Development Trust sold the property to Keystone Group, Inc., in October of 2018.
A piece of local history will be razed when the land is totally cleared. The 1830 Nereus Mendenhall house, called the Oaks, was moved to the site in 1998 by historian Benjamin Briggs in order to preserve it. The original location is now an office park off Hwy. 68.
Once considered one of the best examples of Greek Revival architecture in Guilford County, as late as March 20 of this year, the Piedmont Historic Homes website listed the house as available for sale, noting the purchaser must move the structure. A recent report by Guilford County on the property did not list any buildings, so it is assumed the Mendenhall house had deteriorated too much to be inhabitable.
Nereus Mendenhall (1819-1893) was the son of Jamestown's Richard Mendenhall and was once principal of New Garden Boarding School, which became Guilford College.
Photo by Carol Brooks
The Nereus Mendenhall house awaits demolition for a new development on Penny Road across from Florence School.