Although I have not lived in Chapel Hill as long as Ken Broun has (42 years, not 44), taught at the Medical School (not the Law School), and was never mayor, I think his optimism about 140 W. Franklin St. is misplaced (CHN, April 11, http://bit.ly/HCx2vD
Yes, he will doubtless enjoy pleasant strolls down Franklin Street, but to what will he be strolling?
It is highly unlikely that this building will revitalize downtown, except perhaps for bringing the kind of ugliness already provided by East 54 and Greenbridge. Where will there be adequate parking, a grocery store, specialty food or clothing stores, movie theaters, or anything else that will keep him and his neighbors from driving as usual to Southpoint or University Mall or New Hope Commons?
The effect of this building on tax dollars remains to be seen, and the fact that over half of the apartments have been sold doesnt make me any more optimistic than I am about Greenbridge, which still looks like an empty shell.
The developers are winning the battle to destroy what many of us love about Chapel Hill, and I fear that they will continue to do so despite all the community input to the 2020 Chapel Hill Project.Arthur Finn Chapel HillDebts should be paid
I read with great interest your article about the Chapel Hill-Carrboro school board voting to forgive $45,000 in unpaid school lunch debt (CHN, April 11, http://bit.ly/HxuJJr
). As a parent of two children in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro school system, I find that offensive.
It is not always easy to budget for school lunches, but I do so. The message the school board is sending is that as parents, we no longer have to pay because they will just write off the debt. This is unfair to the parents who are diligent about paying, and I feel that it is appropriate to turn the debt over to a collection agency.
If parents are on that line just above qualifying for free or reduced lunch, then those debts should be forgiven, but I seriously doubt that $45,000 is attributed just to that income bracket. The interesting thing is that one of my children did not eat in the cafeteria for a few months and the money in her account was zeroed out. It was not returned to me, and I received no notification. Joy Lewis Chapel Hill Kids love cheese
I am an 11-year-old honor student in the Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools. When I heard about this disturbing school lunch article I was compelled to write a letter with a student perspective.
Let me tell you about kids: We love cheese. Even lactose-intolerant kids like myself like cheese. Given the opportunity to pocket our lunch money and get a free cheese sandwich, we would do it every time!
Our list of top five favorite foods are: macaroni and cheese, cheese pizza, cheese sticks, grilled cheese and cheese balls. All of those cheese items are filled with fat and have little nutritional value. Thank you so much, Chapel Hill News for giving me a chance to think I will not have to eat my fruits and veggies on a day when I dont have change to spare.
Im only sorry I didnt get to think this for very long. As it turns out, the superintendent called my mother to clarify how his comments were misrepresented and that he actually supports kids having the regular meal. At the meeting he was asked how they handled this at his last job in Connecticut. He told the truth about how they handled it in Connecticut and also said that he did not support doing it that way and had tried to change it. The article didnt say that.
Thanks again Chapel Hill News for helping me understand how things work in the adult world. You can publicly cut out parts of peoples sentences, but please dont ever publicly cut the cheese, that would be rude.Lilianna A. Smith Fifth grade
P.S. If any adults have egg on their face, dont worry, kids are very forgiving. We can use it to make omelets for the school breakfast program. Editors note:
Thanks, Lilianna. Our story used the word proposed. That was incorrect. The superintendent was only telling the board about a practice in a previous school district where he worked. We regret the error. CH 2020 and CN
Regarding the front-page story on Carolina Flats (CHN, April 11, http://bit.ly/HLlJmy
): First, it is premature to claim that the Carolina Flats concept is consistent with any comprehensive plan that may come out of the already controversial Chapel Hill 2020 Project. In fact, both Carolina Flats and Chapel Hill 2020 fall far short of recognizing the full impact of Carolina North and the need to treat the Carolina North apron area as a whole for planning purposes. Approval of rezoning for individual tracts in the area, one by one, ultimately surrenders comprehensive, town-driven planning to developer-driven, piecemeal changes altering the entire nature of our town, but particularly the area around Carolina North.
Red flags should go up the moment any rezoning near Carolina North is requested, especially if it entails a jump of several levels of density and a change from residential to commercial. As it is, the Estes Drive corridor is already identified as a controversial part of CH 2020, begging for much more discussion before rezoning any part of it, let alone modeling its future on the Highways 15-501 or 54 corridors.
As proposed, the Carolina Flats project entails a density of parking, traffic, and commercial activity that the corner of Martin Luther King Boulevard and Estes Drive already one of the most congested in town could hardly sustain. Near-corner ingress and egress on either MLK or Estes would be troublesome. The number of cars plus paving and run-off are problematic, especially in a town striving for environmental sustainability.
And the issue of adequate student housing is something of a red-herring until we know what, exactly, will be included in Carolina North. Finally, any plan for development on Estes near MLK must take into account the proximity to two schools, a church, a Y, a day-care facility, and surrounding single-family neighborhoods.Priscilla C. MurphyTheresa Raphael-Grimm Chapel HillDont cry for him
The old adage is so true reality is often funnier, more dramatic and certainly more entertaining than anything we could ever make up.
I was immediately drawn to the headline UNC Physicist jailed in Argentina. (CHN, April 4, http://bit.ly/HZGyYb
) Dont cry for me, indeed, a defiant professor Paul H. Frampton practically screamed from his jail cell in Buenos Aires.
In what I can only describe as a case of academic mines-bigger-than-yours, Frampton accused Provost Bruce Carney of some sort of administrative malfeasance in the dispensation (or not) of his UNC salary. According to the story, this was largely predicated on Framptons belief that Carney suffers from some sort of tenure-and-academic-achievements envy.
Notwithstanding the obvious seriousness of Framptons circumstance, my favorite line in the article is the one that states, Frampton has written hundreds of scholarly papers and studies some of the largest questions confronting mankind, including the origins and likely fate of the universe. How about pondering the ramifications of two kilos of cocaine being discovered in your luggage whether you put them there or not! Admittedly, I havent spent too much time lately worrying about my origin or the fate of the universe. Im afraid that, like many I know, Ive been more concerned with the cost of health care and gas, gun control, cellphone bans and the sometimes dreary and amusing minutiae of my daily life.
Nonetheless, I really like this Frampton guy. I think you have to admire someone whos sitting in a South American jail and still has the chutzpah to declare his obvious intellectual superiority and stand up for his rights as a UNC faculty member. Im almost ready to set up a defense fund for this genius. While were at it lets print those Free Frampton T-shirts and occupy something.
Like the good professor, perhaps we all need to man up and take ourselves more seriously. I guess an indefinite stint in a foreign jail might give one plenty of time to consider the fate of the universe along with a lot of other stuff. Bill Baucom Chapel Hill
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