Re the lead article on the proposed Charterwood development " 'No' vote frustrates critics" (CHN, Feb. 5) let's review: In purchasing the property, the developer gambled that he could get the zoning changed. He cynically named the project after the feature to be destroyed.
The property was zoned as it was for a number of reasons, including the irreplaceable large trees, stormwater issues, and a long Chapel Hill tradition of neighborhood protection.
As many have mentioned, there are problems with Chapel Hill's current permitting process. But in this case, I think that the limitations imposed worked exactly as they should, to stop a large, poorly designed and ecologically destructive project.
Undeveloped land in Chapel Hill is ever more limited and what remains often has problems attached to it. When you add the town's current budget struggles, it seems to me a kind of unreasonable panic has set in. There are now drumbeat calls to allow any and all new development. A quick look at the town's website will indicate 55 development approvals and two denials. I believe that the council has to retain a discretionary role and should not rubber stamp every application in response to an unbased notion that it would be of benefit to the town.
As we engage in the 2020 visioning process for the town, I believe it is very important to get our assumptions and facts straight. We may still disagree, but at least we will have some shared vocabulary and statistical basis. How many were truly going to benefit from Charterwood, in spite of a campaign of suppositions in support of the project?
We are no longer a village, but an important hub in a bustling region. Continued growth and density are a given, but the questions of how and where are ever-more crucial. It is all the more important that we protect what makes this community distinctive.Amey MillerChapel HillGun control naive
In response to "Stop the Slaughter" (Letters, CHN, Feb. 1) I, too, am saddened and dismayed whenever a death seems it could have been preventable. However, my agreement with Mr. Schwartz ends there.
His proposal for "a strict, foolproof gun control law" is a worn cliche aimed at the mere surface of a much more complex issue. The abundant gun control laws we now have are not 100 percent enforceable. It is naive to assume that additional laws would be 100 percent enforceable. There is an old saying, "Guns are not bad, people are." I would like for Mr. Schwartz to give me one country that has eliminated homicides through gun control laws.
Perhaps Mr. Schwartz's energy and concern should be redirected toward the numerous deaths on our highways. The number of fatalities due to automobiles far exceeds those due to firearms. Perhaps he should be requesting a lower national speed limit or more stringent license requirements or more efficient safety regulations for the automobile manufacturers. There are more lives that could be saved in this arena. But, targetting car ownership is not as "politically correct" as targetting gun ownership.
Both firearms and automobiles are machines/tools that have the potential to serve a real need in our world. However, as long as humans are fallible, no amount of legislation is going to eliminate the misuse of these tools ... nor the deadly consequences.Tim GalliherChapel HillNothing to fear
I am a sophomore at Woods Charter School. I am writing in support of the new men's IFC transitional housing facility being built at 1315 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, off Homestead Road.
I live within one mile of the building location and I believe that it is a good idea that will help incorporate and bring homeless citizens back into society. The location is conveniently within walking distance to bus lines, shopping centers, the Southern Human Services Center and area churches.
However, our community is deeply divided over this and needs more unity. More should be done to gain support for the project and reduce the fear that people have for the homeless. Perhaps increased police patrols around our neighborhoods and Homestead Park will help with this. Perhaps a community block party with local businesses, neighbors, the IFC, and churches might help, too.
I urge members of the Chapel Hill community, especially churches and local businesses, to learn about the project and hopefully become actively engaged in volunteering and supporting this project. I have served meals at the IFC homeless shelter and found it to be a worthwhile experience with nothing to fear.Odom WillifordChapel Hill No place for dump
The proposed transfer station (CHN, Jan. 29) is not a high-tech solution, it is a mini-dump.
Waste from Chapel Hill, Carrboro and elsewhere will be brought into a warehouse facility. The waste will likely be dumped into an industrial-sized trash compactor, compressed into bales, and then loaded into special semi-trailers. When enough bales have filled a semi, it will leave for delivery elsewhere via I-40 or N.C. 86 to I-85. This requires a huge increase in semi and garbage truck traffic. It will be accompanied by garbage odor, traffic noise, litter and plummeting real estate values.
Given that the wind is from the southwest for 10 months of the year, this seriously compromises the rural buffer, especially the wonderful trails abounding New Hope Creek. Other communities downwind include Woodkirk, Lockridge, Creek Way, Hideaway Estates, Trinkus Manor, Hills of New Hope, Stoneridge, Falls of New Hope, and Carolina Friends School. We hope all of these folks give voice to their concerns.John and Judith PhilpotChapel Hill Time to speak up
Enough is enough! It's about time that people demand that something be done to stop the civil disobedience that has been going on for months on Franklin Street in Chapel Hill.
There are public health ordnances against defecating and urinating on streets, stealing someone else's property, against garbage left - why are these ordnances and laws which protect all of us not being enforced?
Freedom of speech and freedom of assembly do not give these anarchists the right to disrupt or interfere with the rights of everyone else in the community. One individual's "right" ends when it interferes with the rights of others.
It's time for our city administration and elected officials to stand up to these agitators and not allow them to do as they please. Not one more penny of tax dollars should be spent attempting to mollify them or give them any more publicity for their anarchist goals.V. Rosan HutterDurhamGrateful TABLE
Bridge building is a powerful metaphor for social change. At TABLE, we are grateful and humbled by the MLK University/Community Planning Corp.'s decision to honor us with a Bridge Builder Award at the 2012 Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Banquet.
With the community's help, TABLE distributes healthy food every week to 125 local kids who would otherwise go hungry on weekends and days when free school meals are not available.
Childhood hunger has no place in our world. Many thanks to all who help TABLE build bridges between hungry children and a caring community.Joy MacVaneExecutive directorA tasty Affaire
Feb. 4 marked World Cancer Day, and Cornucopia Cancer Support Center wishes to thank those who help make sure anyone journeying with cancer receives the support and resources they need to live life to the fullest.
Eighteen organizations and individuals sponsored our signature fundraising event, A Chocolate Affaire, at the Millennium in Durham.
We appreciate our business sponsors: AT&T North Carolina, Business Insurers of the Carolinas, Capstrat, Carrboro Family Vision, Chapel Hill Printing & Graphics, Denise Fisher Photography, Optima Asset Management, Performance Automall, The News & Observer, 1360 WCHL and Webb Writes. Our thanks, too, to individual sponsors Jane D. Brown, C. Perry Colwell, Jerry Hosking, Steve and Denise Vanderwoude, Dr. Frank and Barbara Weiner and Joanne Zimmer.
You can find Information about Cornucopia Cancer Support Center at www.cancersupport4u.org
.Lois BoyntonCornucopia Cancer Support Center
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