Midtown Raleigh News

May 9, 2014

News briefs

Workshop planned for Buffaloe and New Hope; Six Forks planning process to launch Tuesday; Proposed Autozone draws fire.

Workshop planned for Buffaloe and New Hope

City planners will hold a half-day workshop to hear residents and property owners’ input about development at the corner of New Hope and Buffaloe roads.

Nearby residents had requested that city planning staff develop an area plan for the intersection and the surrounding area, but staff opted for the workshop instead.

The City Council last year rejected a plan for a 24-hour Sheetz gas station at a vacant lot at the intersection. Residents had objected strongly to the plan, saying it would erode the character of their neighborhood with increased trash, traffic and loitering.

The findings from the workshop would be used as guidance for any future amendments to city planning rules that are intended to avoid conflicts between residential and commercial development, according to staff.

The city council approved plans for the workshop last week.

“I think this is a great step at this time,” said Councilman John Odom, who represents the area.

Michelle McIntosh, a resident of the area, wrote in an email that residents are hopeful the workshop will “provide an avenue for greater citizen involvement in Raleigh’s planning process.”

Staff writer Sarah Barr

Six Forks planning process to launch Tuesday

City officials want input as they launch a new plan for the growth of Six Forks Road between the Interstate 440 Beltline and Lynn Road.

Two public kickoff meetings for the Six Forks Corridor Study are scheduled for 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. Tuesday on the first floor of the First Citizens Center, 4300 Six Forks Road next to North Hills.

As North Hills and surrounding areas continue to grow, city planners must plot land uses and determine what the road itself will look like – the number of traffic lanes, bike facilities and public transit elements.

Neighbors are already voicing opinions on the project’s website ( bit.ly/1clpSA6), suggesting wider sidewalks, pedestrian lighting and even a footbridge across Six Forks at North Hills.

Participants are asked to RSVP for Tuesday’s meetings by calling 919-996-4643 or going online to midtownraleighalliance.org.

Proposed Autozone draws fire

The Raleigh City Council debated a proposed Western Boulevard Autozone store on Tuesday night.

The council delayed action on a rezoning request for several single-family homes at the corner of Western and Chaney Road, just inside the Beltline. Benson Kirkman, chairman of the West Citizens Advisory Council, said his group is concerned about the proposal.

“Putting an Autozone in this location is very questionable to us,” Kirkman told the council. “Cars regularly cut through the neighborhood and come out on Chaney Road. Putting another business in there is not going to help that situation.”

The current zoning calls for moderate-density residential development, such as townhomes. Representing the property owner, attorney Tom Worth said that’s not likely on a busy street next to a gas station.

Staff writer Colin Campbell

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