Neighborhood Profile – Falconhurst

The Falconhurst neighborhood is located north of downtown West Asheville, bordered on the east by Louisiana Avenue, on the south by Haywood Road, on the west by Mitchell and Druid avenues, and on the north by Patton Avenue.

The neighborhood owes its name to a gentleman named Falconhurst, who built one of the area’s first big properties on Blue Ridge Avenue in the mid-1800s. In the 1890s, Rutherford Platt Hayes, the third son of President Rutherford B. Hayes, left the Midwest and moved to Asheville. He acquired large holdings of land, including a tract on Deaver View Mountain, and Falconhurst.  At the time, Falconhurst was a farm near the city.

Here Hayes engaged in scientific farming on a large scale, using his background in conservation and biology. He also served as president and promoter of Asheville’s North Carolina Fair, president of the Buckeye Water Company, and on the board of directors of the Blue Ridge Building and Loan Association. Residing in Falconhurst, he was active in the early development of Asheville as a resort and business center.

On July 9, 1921, a real estate ad placed in the Asheville Citizen Times describes Falconhurst as, “The Flower of Asheville — Where City and Country Blend,” promising potential property buyers spacious lots and proximity to the city without the “heat and dust.”  At the Westville Pub on Haywood Road, one can see a photograph taken on Craggy Avenue in the 1920s showing the children of Falconhurst on horseback.

The neighborhood continued to develop as an attractive community for families and will soon increase by some 100 houses and apartments upon completion of two new residential developments.

While Falconhurst has no formal organization, recent concentrated real estate development has spurred the formation of a neighborhood group with plans to form an official neighborhood association. Projects include working with city and local developers to introduce traffic calming measures, enhancing and protecting the neighborhood’s several streams, and a greenway development of the Falconhurst Natural Area — an unspoiled tract of rolling hills and trees just off of Patton Avenue that was purchased by the Conservation Trust for North Carolina and donated to the City of Asheville in 2012.

In recent years, Falconhurst has become a more active community, thanks to the formation of a community garden by local residents. The garden is located on what is known as the “back forty” behind Craggy and Blue Ridge avenues.  It is an open field that was once used as farmland and on which committed neighbors have recently completed a wetlands restoration project. The group hosts monthly potlucks open to the entire neighborhood and two yard sales a year to raise funds. The Falconhurst Community Garden is active on Facebook and many residents have recently started using which has a Falconhurst page.