Raleigh’s effort to apply new development zones to about a third of Raleigh has drawn more scorn from residents than any other vote or proposal in recent months.
The effort, known as Raleigh’s remapping process, would rezone more than 35,000 properties.
Residents have filled City Hall and local auditoriums in recent weeks to express their fear that the new zones could change the character of their neighborhoods. Some threatened to vote against any council member who voted to pass the new zones before residents’ concerns were met.
It appears now they may not get that chance.
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This week, several Raleigh City Council members said they are in no hurry to approve the new zones before Oct. 6, when the mayor and all seven council seats are up for election.
The council is scheduled to have two meetings – one Sept. 1, one Sept. 15 – before the election.
“What’s the hurry?” said Eugene Weeks, who’s seeking re-election in District C. “We need to slow down this process and make sure we’re getting all these comments.”
Nearly every other council member reached for comment agreed. District A representative Wayne Maiorano, the only council member not seeking re-election, declined to comment.
While the majority of council members said they don’t plan to approve the new zones before the election, they do plan to approve them before new council members are sworn in.
“I do think it needs to happen with this council,” said Bonner Gaylord, who is seeking re-election in District E.
“We’ve been working on it for so long and it’s a product of this body,” he said. “If we intend to implement the work we’ve done, we need to move ahead.”
Council members Mary-Ann Baldwin and John Odom agreed. The next council is scheduled to be sworn in at the City Council meeting on Dec. 1.
Old Chevy building
If you’re interested in the design of Durham’s new police headquarters building you have through Sept. 8 to lobby the City Council.
But if you want the city to save the 1928 Carpenter Chevrolet building on the East Main Street site, you better get started now. That option adds nearly $4 million to a project that has now ballooned from a $62 million budget to a little more than $80 million.
Council members asked architects this week whether the Carpenter building was a key historical building.
“It’s not an architectural jewel,” said architect Kevin Montgomery.
Council members Cora Cole-McFadden and Eddie Davis said they were leaning toward not keeping it. Member Diane Catotti said she isn’t “sold” on keeping it either.
But, she added, “We all know we are going to get lobbied hard.”
▪ Dr. David Stein of IFC Pediatrics in Burlington will speak on the challenges surrounding Medicaid expansion in North Carolina at a meeting of the Western Wake Republicans on Monday, Aug. 24, at the Rally Point Sports Grill, 1837 N. Harrison Ave. in Cary. Candidates for Cary Town Council also will appear. Dinner at 6 p.m., program at 7 p.m.
Compiled by Paul A. Specht and Virginia Bridges