The Town of Southern Pines agreed at its March 22 Work Session meeting to approve the four-phase planned development for Rickhouse Properties’ American Whiskey Company off U.S. Hwy 1 at 175 Yadkin Road as seen on this map.
The property is 15.4 acres, and four acres are allocated for development.
The approval allows for the 50-foot building height stipulation for the still roof column. The approval does not include parking space details which will be provided by the applicant with the preliminary development submission.
The development qualified for the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Brownfield Program due to a 1970s solvent spill. The EPA assists with funding in assessment and revitalization of the land use.
According to applicant Jessica Halling, the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (NCDEQ) hired a private engineering group, Hart & Hickman, to assess the safety, and their report will relay remediation needs.
“… already know likely outcome, at most, is a vapor barrier at Rickhouses B and C,” Halling said at the town’s last meeting. Rickhouses are storage areas for aging distilled spirits.
Halling said American Whiskey Company does not plan on offering a huge menu, but enough for people to feel safe while tasting spirits, and the company will be suitable for hosting private gatherings where people can bring their own chefs.
“Brad and I are grateful for the overwhelming support from the Town of Southern Pines and from the local community across Moore County,” Halling said in an email to Sandhills Sentinel. “Given the local coverage of some of our due diligence planning along with the community’s response, we feel the community has now joined alongside of us on this journey!
“We look forward to advancing our plan to create a cool and meaningful environment at the distillery, one that is attractive to our multi-generational local and tourist community. Importantly, we look forward to offering a delicious array of classic and on trend super-premium spirits for the community to enjoy.”
Brad Halling is a retired special forces soldier who currently trains soldiers on Fort Bragg. He is also a certified prosthetist by trade, having earned a prosthetics degree after retiring from the U.S. Army.
Jessica Halling recently retired as the staff judge advocate, or senior legal advisor, at the U.S. Army Joint Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg. She currently practices law in Moore and Cumberland Counties.
American Whiskey Company is projected to be completed within 24 months of the issuance of building permits.
In other meeting business, the town voted to include the Village of Pinehurst in its interlocal building inspections providing service as needed.
At the April 13 meeting, the town will consider reducing the speed limit in Talamore County Club’s Highland View Drive and Talamore Drive from 35 miles per hour to 25 miles per hour. The Talamore Westmore HOA residents presented 108 signatures, which is over 75% of the residents. Speed studies by the Southern Pines Police Department had not shown a prevalence of extreme speeds except with a violation at 2 a.m.
The roads serve as access to the clubhouse, and there are a lot of individuals who cut through, and a planned increase in housing is expected to congest the area near the clubhouse.
“And at the end of that street, there’s a lot of rentals, and so people are not as cognizant of the speed limit as maybe they should be,” Mayor Carol Haney said.
Feature photo of the rendering of American Whiskey Company provided by Architect Tag Galyean.
~Written by Sandhills Sentinel Reporter Stephanie M. Sellers.