It was a surprise to all of us on Town Council, judging from the reactions around the dais, to hear Council Member Matt Czajkowski resign effective March 30. He is moving to Kigali to work on providing clean water and economic development. I know the Council will be very different without him and the elections in November very interesting. Here's wishing the family all kinds of success!!
Though the Carrboro Alderfolks and Chapel Hill-Carrboro School Board are both are break this week, it’ll still be a busy week for Orange County’s public bodies. The Chapel Hill Town Council will consider Obey Creek and talk about a number of other development proposals currently on the table, while the county school board will consider approving its strategic plan.
The Hillsborough Town Board will hold a workshop on stormwater and Riverwalk, and host a joint meeting with the county commissioners covering transit, economic development, planning and host of other issues.
Last week, Chapel Hill’s economic development officer, Dwight Bassett, presented some data on Chapel Hill’s housing market to a reasonably-sized crowd at Town Hall. Bassett’s presentation followed a brief talk from Robert Hickey of the National Housing Conference about what’s happening in housing trends around the country.
Though the wintry weather has delayed or cancelled many of the public meetings on tap for this week, we still wanted to give you an update as to what’s going on. Right now we know that the Carrboro Alderfolks discussion on the Carrboro Arts and Innovation Center will happen on Thursday and that the Chapel Hill Town Council will meet on Obey Creek that night as well.
Both school boards and the Hillsborough Town Board were scheduled to be off this week. As we get information on new meeting times we’ll update the posts below.
Parking, like traffic, is a recurring theme in local conversation about growth and development. We often hear from some community members that there is nowhere to park in downtown Chapel Hill/Carrboro, that a lack of parking is hurting local businesses, and that the parking minimums required for the Ephesus-Fordham renewal district are insufficient.
But the facts simply don’t support these claims. The reality is that providing more parking – especially surface parking – is fundamentally incompatible with urban land uses.*
It’s another busy week across Orange County, with all of the county’s public bodies holding at least one meeting.
The Carrboro Alderfolks will talk “green” cemeteries while the Chapel Hill Town Council will have a special meeting on Obey Creek and host an initial public forum on how to use Community Development Block Grants. The county commissioners will discuss mandating that county’s contractors pay a living wage to get government business, while the Hillsborough Town Board will consider an economic development grant application.
Whenever there’s a new development proposal pending before a local governing board, the center of the conversation always seems to gravitate toward traffic. Given this tendency, I think it’s important we understand historic traffic changes in Chapel Hill and Carrboro.
After a pretty busy couple of weeks, this week will be a bit quieter for Orange County’s public bodies. The Carrboro Alderfolks will hold the second half of their public hearing on the proposed Carrboro Arts & Innovation Center, while the county commissioners will get a series of annual updates and discuss a strategic communications plan. The Chapel Hill-Carrboro School Board will talk parental involvement and health education.
The Chapel Hill Town Council, Hillsborough Town Board and county school board are all break this week.
In 2013, a couple of European psychologists reviewed the literature in an attempt to define the term “quality of life.” Their conclusion was that it “turn[s] out to be an ambiguous and elusive concept.”
In an editorial in the Chapel Hill News, Travis Crayton and Molly DeMarco claimed “Many of us might have originally chosen to live in Chapel Hill/Carrboro because of the high quality of life, exemplified by a vibrant student life, arts and music scene, and abundance of unique, local businesses.”
Everyone has heard by now that Google Fiber is coming to the Triangle, including Chapel Hill and Carrboro (but not Hillsborough or rural Orange County), for those lucky enough to live in a neighborhood or apartment building that Google deems worthy to provide service to. What do you think this means for us locally? How will this help, or hinder, our efforts to repair the digital divide? With some real competition help bring down prices for other broadband?