A petition against the possible future location for a multi-use county campus has gained 500 supporters since it was first created online this week.

The 21 acres of land are located within the Hillsborough Highway 70 and Cornelius Street Corridor and would include a new Detention Center, which will replace the one in Hillsborough, and a new Environment and Agricultural Center.

The petition against the location was created by Hillsborough resident David ONeal, along with a group of local homeowners and farmers, and is directed toward the Orange County Board of Commissioners.

The petition states that the group is “concerned about the adverse effects that the increased traffic, night-time lighting, and construction and operation noise will have” on their children and farm animals.

At last weeks’ meeting, several residents living on adjacent properties spoke and voiced concerns over the possible disturbance that the agriculture center and detention center will bring to their farms.

A third-generation bee keeper, Jennifer Hall, spoke of her farm that has been in her family for generations.

“Cattle, chickens, horses- it’s a way of life that we’re trying to preserve. So we’re of course concerned. I could go on about the traffic and all of that, but there are other family members that are concerned. We’re trying to keep our farm together. We’re especially worried about the safety and liability of our livestock…So we would really like some information on this, and we humbly ask y’all to pick another site,” said Hall.

Director of Asset Management Services Jeff Thompson told commissioners at the meeting that other sites had been considered and that the Highway 70 site is the best option.

“The Highway 70 site assembly, which is recommended for continued study, offers a shared accessible infrastructure. We have water and sewer adjacent to the site. It’s versatile; its efficient in location for operations for the county; it has expansion capability, and it can share infrastructure and site costs between those facilities and it’s supported by a staff of Hillsborough,” said Thompson.

The county will host a public information session regarding the plans at 5:30 PM February 6 prior to a county commissioner meeting, and a public hearing on February 15.

Photo via Orange County