TCC "in the KNOW" August 2017

August 2017 Updates

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State:

  • The North Carolina legislature has redrawn the maps of the districts from which state lawmakers are elected, and the public is invited to make suggestions.  North Carolinians can submit comments via a public comments submission form at ncleg.net. Comments also may be sent by U.S. mail to: Redistricting, 300 N. Salisbury St., Suite 545, Raleigh, North Carolina 27603-5925.  The legislature plans to approve the new maps before the end of the month to meet a court-ordered Sept. 1 deadline.

Regional:

  • The proposed Durham-Orange light-rail transit may eventually move people across the western Triangle at high speed, but getting there is a slow and tedious process always in danger of being blocked by a change in federal policy or priorities.  Fortunately the process took a strong surge forward last week with a green light from the Federal Transit Administration to move the 17.7-mile light-rail project into the engineering phase.  This step will be the last design step.  With the blueprint complete, the federal government will decide whether to provide 50 percent of the project’s $2.47 billion cost.

Wake County:

  • Wake County Manager Jim Hartmann announced that he would be stepping down in October.  Hartmann, who has served as county manager for three and a half years, said his last day with the county will be Oct. 27.
  • The consultant working with the Wake County Affordable Housing Steering Committee will present
    its work thus far and some recommendations at the September 11th Wake County Commission work session at 1:00.
  • Wake County leaders disagree on whether to spend millions of dollars to turn an old golf course into a park, especially since the county already has $2 million set aside for a separate park project five miles away.  The Wake County Board of Commissioners might buy the former Crooked Creek Golf Course off of U.S. 401 in southern Wake County.  The 143-acre course near Fuquay-Varina closed in 2015.

Apex:

Cary:

  • The Cary municipal election is on Tuesday, October 10, 2017.  There are three seats open in Cary; District A, District C, and an At-Large District.  All three incumbents for these seats – Jennifer Robinson, Jack Smith and Ed Yerha respectively – have filed for re-election.  The candidates who have filed are:
    • District A: Jennifer Robinson, Majid Mohadjer and Radha Ravi Varma
    • District C: Jack Smith and Kenneth A. Presting
    • At-Large District: Ed Yerha, Jeff Alan De Deugd and George McDowell. 
  • Cary has become a city of more than 160,000 residents by growing out, not up.  Since the 1970s, the town boundaries have pushed north, south and west as Cary has grown to nearly six times its acreage and 20 times its population.  The amount of undeveloped land available to Cary is running low.  The town is now surrounded by other cities and counties, such as Raleigh, Apex and Chatham County, and only 17 percent of the town’s land remains undeveloped.  Instead of growing horizontally, the town will have to grow vertically, and new projects will increasingly come in the form of infill development and denser redevelopment.

·         The Town Council held the first public hearing on August 24 for the redevelopment of the Cary Towne Center Mall with the IKEA site.  The next step in the rezoning process will involve a hearing in front of the Planning and Zoning Board in the future before it comes back to the Town Council for a decision.

·          A fundraiser will be held on Saturday, October 7th to help raise money to provide long term care for Lori Cove, the Town’s former Transportation & Facilities Director who was the victim of a hit and run bicycle accident last fall.    There will be food and drink, a 50 mile and 20 mile bike ride and 2 mile fun run/walk.  Festivities will be held at the Preston Walk on James Jackson Avenue and Cary Parkway
from 9am-4pm.  For more information, visit www.tourdecove.com

Chapel Hill:

Durham (City):

  • There are three City Council seats up for election this year as well as the seat of Durham Mayor Bill Bell, who is not seeking re-election after sixteen years at the city's helm.  A primary election will be held for each race on October 10 to narrow down the field for the November 7 general election.  Here are the candidates, with links to their campaign pages. 

Mayor

Farad Ali    Pierce Freelon    Steve Schewel    Sylvester Williams

Tracy Drinker    Shea Ramirez    Michael Johnson

City Council Ward 1

Cora Cole-McFadden (incumbent)    DeDreana Freeman    John Tarantino    Brian Callaway

City Council Ward 2 (this seat is being vacated by council member Eddie Davis).

Dolly Reaves    Robert Fluet    Deanna Hall     LeVon Barnes    John Rooks Jr.    Mark-Anthony Middleton

City Council Ward 3
Lenny Kovalick    Vernetta Alston    Shelia Ann Huggins    Don Moffitt (incumbent)
 

  • Durham Mayor Bill Bell is challenging local landlords and the Durham Housing Authority to house another thirty homeless households with rent vouchers within in the next seven months.  It’s part of an effort, discussed during the annual Mayor's Landlord Roundtable, to get more local landlords to accept rent subsidies from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Housing Choice Voucher program, also known as Section 8.  The DHA administers the vouchers locally.

·         The Durham City-County Planning Department is hosting a new semester of its popular Planning Academy. The interactive four-week class will re-launch in October 2017 to coincide with National Community Planning Month. Participants will learn about a variety of planning and development topics, such as the history of city planning, how development projects come together, the laws and court cases shaping property rights and the actions of governments, the role of the Durham City-County Planning Department and other departments, and how to get involved in planning issues in Durham. For more information, please visit: http://durhamnc.gov/3174/Planning-Academy  or contact Matthew Filter, Senior Planner, at matthew.filter@durhamnc.gov

·         Earlier this month, the Durham City Council and Board of County Commissioners both approved updates to the Design District zoning regulations within the Unified Development Ordinance. Design Districts emphasize “form” instead of “use,” and place an emphasis on mixed-use activity and creating vibrant public spaces. The approved changes include changes to height calculations, new street typology standards, new open space requirements, and new/revised automobile and bicycle parking requirements, to name a few. Additionally, all Design District regulations were collated into one chapter to increase ease of use. For more information, please contact Michael Stock, Senior Planner, atmichael.stock@durhamnc.gov

Fuquay-Varina:

  • In October 2014, the Town Board adopted the 2014 Facility Master Plan, a comprehensive five-year Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources Master Plan.  The ambitious plan evaluated where the Town was and where it wanted to be in terms of parks and amenities and set a course for action.  Over the past three years, many projects have been completed and it’s now time to create a new PRCR Master Plan to ensure that park facilities meet the needs of the citizens.  Input is crucial in determining the direction and vision of our community’s recreation and parks.  Here’s how to give input!

    Garner:
  • A three-year public-private partnership—the first of its kind in Wake County—has brewed up great results for historic downtown Garner. With help from a $75,000 grant from the Main Street Solutions Fund—and a partnership involving the Garner Revitalization Association (GRA), Town of Garner and North Carolina Main Street & Rural Planning Center—local entrepreneurs Patrick and Michelle Byrd have completed renovation of a historic bank building in downtown Garner and made it home of their Full Bloom Coffee & Craft. Full Bloom is the first Main Street Solutions Fund project to be completed in Wake County. The fund assists planning agencies and small businesses in downtown revitalization efforts. The Full Bloom project comes online as the Town continues to invest heavily in its historic downtown. The Town invested $2.67 million to start building the new Garner Recreation Center and design future streetscape improvements in 2016-2017—part of its $9 million in total investment in downtown over the next few years.

Morrisville:

  • From working on Morrisville-Carpenter Road to widening NC-54 to a series of changes to McCrimmon Parkway, there is a lot of roadwork planned for Morrisville and increased funding from the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) will see those expanded and accelerated.  Among the projects funded through this new plan are widening NC-54, widening and grade separation at the railroad crossing on McCrimmon Parkway, work on the I-40/Aviation Parkway interchanges, extending NC-147 and connecting Louis Stephens Drive.  All of these are NCDOT-managed plans.  Other projects going on around this time will be work to extend McCrimmon Parkway.  As part of this, the section of the road near NC-54 and Chapel Hill Road will be closed for the next two to three weeks.  Drivers are recommended to get around it by using Morrisville Carpenter Road and connecting to either Davis Drive or NC-54.
  • Municipal Election: Four Seats Open in Morrisville; Mayor, District 2, District 4 and At-Large District.  Morrisville Councilmember TJ Cawley, who currently represents District 2, was prevented from running for re-election for that seat due to district renumbering and is instead running for Mayor.  All other incumbents – Mark Stohlman, Vicki Scroggins-Johnson and Steve Rao – are running for re-election in their current seats, with both Scroggins-Johnson and Rao running unopposed.  The candidates who have filed are:
    • Mayor: Mark Stohlman and TJ Cawley
    • District 2: Guri Burmi and Jerry Windle
    • District 4: Vicki Scroggins-Johnson
    • At-Large District: Steve Rao. 

The Morrisville election is on Tuesday, November 7, 2017. If need be, Cary runoff elections will be on this date as well.

Raleigh:

  • Twenty-four people are running for seats on the Raleigh City Council in the election this fall. Here’s a breakdown of the candidates:

Mayor

    • Incumbent Nancy McFarlane is seeking her fourth term as mayor. She is an unaffiliated voter.
    • Paul Fitts is a Republican who works in the mortgage industry.  A native of Raleigh, he attended East Wake High School and UNC-Pembroke.
    • Charles Francis is a Democrat who works as a lawyer and businessman. He was a federal prosecutor before launching a private law practice, The Francis Law Firm, in 1995.

Two At-Large seats currently held by Mary-Ann Baldwin and Russ Stephenson.

    • Russ Stephenson, a Democrat, is Raleigh’s longest-serving council member and is seeking his sixth term. He was elected as an at-large member 12 years ago.
    • Shelia Alamin-Khashoggi, formerly Shelia Jones, is a constructed response rater at Education Testing Services and the founder and president of the J.T. Locke Resource Center.
    • Rob Axtell, an unaffiliated voter, is a service manager at Drucker & Falk, a multifamily and commercial property management firm in Raleigh. He has a bachelor’s degree in economics and mechanical engineering from N.C. State University.
    • Zainab Baloch, a Democrat, is a policy auditor with the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. She previously worked for the City of Raleigh, supervising camp sites throughout the city.
    • Stacy Miller, an unaffiliated voter, was appointed to serve on the Raleigh City Council in 1997. A Raleigh native, Miller graduated from Broughton High School before attending Wake Forest University and Campbell Law School.
    • Nicole Stewart, a Democrat, works as development director for the N.C. Conservation Network, a coalition of nearly 100 community and environmental groups statewide.
    • Robert E Ward IV, a Republican, is a real estate broker with HTR Commercial.

District A

    • Incumbent Dickie Thompson, a Democrat, is seeking his second term.
    • Alex Moore, a Republican, is a real-estate agent with Triangle Real Estate Group.

District B

    • Incumbent David Cox beat John Odom in the 2015 election by about 260 votes. Now he’s seeking his second term.
    • John Odom, an unaffiliated voter, represented District B on the council for 16 years before losing to Cox.

District C

    • Incumbent Corey Branch, a Democrat, is seeking his second term.
    • James G. Bledsoe, an unaffiliated voter, is a sergeant in the U.S. Army Reserve and a correctional officer for the N.C. Department of Public Safety.
    • Crash Gregg, an unaffiliated voter, is publisher of Triangle Downtowner Magazine, a monthly publication that highlights the best of the Triangle.
    • Jeff Stewart, a Democrat, owns Crema, a 10-year-old coffee shop on Fayetteville Street downtown. He ran for mayor in 1998.
    • Olen Watson, a Libertarian candidate, is a small-business owner and former special-education teacher for Wake County schools.

District D

    • Incumbent Kay Crowder, a Democrat, is seeking her second term on the council.
    • B.J. Plott is an unaffiliated voter.

District E

    • Incumbent Bonner Gaylord, an unaffiliated voter, is seeking his fifth term on the council, having served since 2009.
    • Stef Mendell, a Democrat, is a self-proclaimed community activist. She previously worked as head of communications for Stiefel, a GlaxoSmithKline company.
    • Derek Walker is an unaffiliated voter.
  • Upcoming Public Hearings:
    • September 5, 2017, 7 p.m.
    • Joint Hearing with the Raleigh Historic Development Commission (Continued from 7/5/17)
      • Berry O'Kelly School, 514 Method Road
      • Lillie Stroud Rogers House, 616 Method Road
      • Rev. Plummer T. Hall House (Boundary Change), 814 Oberlin Road
      • H. J. Brown Coffin House, 200 South Salisbury Street/105 West Hargett Street
      • Fisher's Bakery & Sandwich Company, 1519 Brookside Drive
      • Business Investment Grant - Infosys, Ltd.
      • Business Investment Grant - ABC Phones of NC, Inc. d/b/a A Wireless

o   Z-42-15 - Lake Wheeler Road (Continued from 7/5/17)

o   Z-10-17 - Freedom Drive

o   CP-3-16 - Cameron Village and Hillsborough Street Small Area Plans

o   CP-2-17 - Pollinator Habitat

o   TC-2-17 - Transit Infrastructure

o   TC-4-17 - Green Infrastructure/Low Impact Development

Wake Forest:

  • Downtown WI-FI Status: Go live scheduled for some time this month.
  • Wake Forest Fiber Feasibility Study: Reviewing the 3 follow up responses from Ting, CenturyLink and TerraPact.
  • FFY2013 STP-DA project Dunn Creek Greenway-Downtown Connector (EL-5100 AE) and Smith & Sanford Creek Greenway and Heritage Lake Road Sidewalks- (C-6154).  This project is currently on schedule and is anticipated to be complete by fall 2017. Staff and the GAB have begun planning the grand opening event for late fall 2017.  Work in June, 2017 includes: Approach slabs at the timber structures have been formed as well as backfilling and compacting.  Concrete was formed and placed for approach slab and some sidewalk work.
  • Strategic Plan recently approved.

Wendell:

·         Wendell Pedestrian Plan: The Plan will go to the Planning Board for review and then to the Town Board.  It is a supplement to the Transportation Plan and identifies areas around Town for sidewalks and crosswalks.

Zebulon:

·         Some people in this eastern Wake County town are rallying in hopes of saving the historic Little River dam that crumbled during Hurricane Matthew last fall.  A Facebook page called “It’s A Dam Shame” encourages residents to urge the Zebulon Board of Commissioners to rebuild the 150-year-old dam near N.C. 97.  The structure, where the Little River meets N.C. 97, was once a mill and later a water source for Zebulon before the town merged utility services with Raleigh in 2006.  It has become a popular local attraction and adjoins Little River Park, where people often fish, picnic or simply enjoy the rural view.

TCC Updates:

The TCC organizes monthly Coffee Chats with municipalities across the Triangle. This type of event provides TCC members with the opportunity to have an informal but intimate conversation with elected officials and senior staff
about the area's growth and development. The chats are a TCC Member Only event! 
For more information, please contact Charlene at charlenel@tricc.org
 

Upcoming Coffee Chats:  Save the Dates and All Member Invites will be sent one month prior to the chat!

October 24, 2017 Duke Energy Coffee Chat – Part Two
November 1, 2017 Durham County Public Schools
December 6, 2017 Town of Apex

Upcoming Luncheon Learn Programs in 2017:
November 13, 2017 Dix Master Plan

 

Other Events:
 

September 12, 2017 - TCC... Not just a Good Ole Boys Club (although the men are great). 

Calling all women in real estate! Join us for drinks, snacks and conversation at the Pharmacy Bottle & Beverage in downtown Cary.  Network with other women in the industry and get a feel for some of the great things happening at the TCC and in downtown Cary!

Register by September 9th by emailing your RSVP to charlenel@tricc.org

September 21, 2017 – Political Pig Pickin’ at Angus Barn.  Get ready for an old fashion political rally and candidate forum, with style!  Candidates throughout the region have the opportunity to mingle with hundreds of potential voters. 
 

To register for this Event visit our website at http://www.tricc.org/political/

TCC Membership Information
In 2017 we will act to:

  • Influence public policy
  • Promote responsible stewardship by government
  • Shape public opinion through education
  • Provide solutions for community issues

If you are not a member of the TCC, please join now and commit your resources to help us.  If you are a TCC member, get ready for a year of action.  We cannot hold our peace and leave the future of this region in the hands of those who fail to understand the benefits of growth, the very growth that has made the Triangle the best place to live in the country. 

“Act now or forever hold your peace.”

For more information about TCC membership visit www.tricc.org or call the TCC office at
919 812-7785

A Special Thank You to Our 2017 Members and Sponsors!

 
Strategic Members:  HBA Raleigh-Wake County      
                                   Raleigh Regional Association of REALTORS®   

Partner Members:  PPM, Inc.   Brownlee Whitlow Praet & File PLLC   Colliers International    
Forsyth Investments Company  Taylor Wiseman & Taylor    Smith Moore Leatherwood

Business Members:  Bass Nixon & Kennedy   Bohler Engineering   CalAtlantic   Community Properties  
Duke Energy   Fern Hill Properties   Gaines & Co.   Fonville Morisey Barefoot   Google Fiber  
Grubb Ventures   HHHunt Homes   JPM South Development   Kane Realty Corporation   K&L Gates  
Kimley-Horn & Associates   Lennar   M/I Homes    McAdams   Pulte GroupMorningstar Law Group  
Paragon Commercial Bank   Preston Development   Robuck Homes   Royal Oaks Building Group
Sepi Engineering   Smith AndersonThe Bainbridge CompaniesTerramor Homes 
Triangle Apartment Association   Triangle Commercial Association of REALTORS®   
WithersRavenel   Williams Property Group

Chamber/Gov:  Cary Chamber of Commerce    DHIC    Midtown Raleigh Alliance    
Morrisville Chamber of Commerce   Durham Regional Association of REALTORS®
Raleigh Chamber of Commerce  HBA Durham Orange Chatham Counties    
           
Sponsor Members: Sepi Engineering  Allen Tate Company  Crescent Communities
Fuller Land Development   Newland Communities   Ramey Kemp & Associates, Inc.
The Nau Company  Tri PropertiesWithersRavenelWoodfield Investments, LLC         

Individual Level Member:  Ammons Development Group   ColeJenest & Stone, P.A.
Spectrum Properties Management Co.   Coldwell Banker Advantage  
HBJ Group, Inc.   Gannett Fleming, Inc.   Income Properties   Kolter Land Partners  
Kotarides Developers   Nexsen Pruet   The Banks Law Firm, P.A.  Chester Allen, CBRE
Thomas C. Worth Law Offices   Dwight Bassett, Town of Chapel Hill