Friday, Oct. 20, Millstone Landing had its Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony. The 88-unit apartment complex, located behind Stone Theatres’ Millstone 14, is an affordable housing complex and is already at full capacity. Millstone Landing is a manifestation of a public-private partnership that includes public and private investments but is privately owned and managed.
Murray Duggins, chairman of United Developers, Inc., has been developing affordable housing for 40 years since his first one at Village Green. Duggins said he believes his company has developed over 100 different complexes.
“We are committed to doing this and are pleased to be part of the Housing Finance Agency group,” Duggins said as he welcomed the guests. He introduced his wife, Nancy, and his children, Denise, Wade, Murray and his son-in-law, Jim Smith. Duggins said, “This is a family business, and I think it’s important to know that we’re in this for the long haul. We’re not in it just to get in and get out.”
Guests included Paul Kennedy, Board of Directors for North Carolina Housing Finance Agency; Nirav Shaw, Community Investment and Lending from Wells Fargo Bank; Mayor Jackie Warner of the town of Hope Mills; Mayor Nat Robertson of the city of Fayetteville; N.C. House Representative John Szoka, R-N.C.; Chris Maples from NC Representative Richard Hudson’s office, R-N.C.; and Janet Bradberry of Senator Richard Burr’s office., R-N.C.
Kennedy praised United Developers, Inc. on its level of quality and stated that these are the best properties because they are here to stay. He informed guests that Congress gives bipartisan support to developments such as Millstone Landing and that $1 private money is about equal to $5 federal with projects such as this.
The development cost $10.6 million and has provided over 200 jobs. Sixty days after completion, the complex was completely leased with each unit filled.
Mayor Jackie Warner said, “We are very proud to have Millstone Landing here.” She continued by explaining that Hope Mills is in a productive and economic state of growth because “if you build it, they will come to Hope Mills, and that is wonderful for us.” Hope Mills is a community now because it is walkable and there are family functions on the weekends. Families that live in Millstone Landing will be able to participate in these functions because they have easy access and will also be in close proximity to the shopping district.
Mayor Nat Robertson said, “We are one community, and I’m proud to stand up here with Jackie and welcome such a great-looking project because of the great quality of work. It’s great to have United as a partner.”
Rep. Szoka said that public-private partnerships work and that he is happy to vote for budgets that put more money into the North Carolina Housing Financing Agency. He said he knows projects like Millstone Landing will not be around for just two or three years but for many years to come because of the quality of work and effort that United Developers, Inc. puts into its projects.