This Week in Orange Politics: February 2-8

OP Editors's picture

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.

What Does Quality of Life Mean to You?

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.”

Weekend Open Thread: What will Google Fiber Mean for Orange County and the Triangle?

OP Editors's picture

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?

Will Chapel Hill Transit Really Start Charging Fares?

Jeff Miles's picture

At a work session earlier this month, the Chapel Hill Town Council received a report on the fiscal sustainability of Chapel Hill Transit. The report describes CHT's current situation as akin to “tale of two cities.” One the one hand the system has been enormously successful in attracting new ridership and on the other hand facing some fairly significant obstacles because of that sucess. The report identifies funding as the chief area of concern, noting that the urgent need for capital expenses mostly to help replace the agency's aging fleet. 

10 Questions to Ask Ourselves About Diversity

Jason Baker's picture

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the makeup of interest groups and other constituencies in Chapel Hill lately, and how it reflects upon the diversity of our community. I focus on Chapel Hill, because, well, that’s the local entity I spend the most time following. But the same questions I ask below should be asked at any level of government, and of any organization we associate ourselves with.

Increased Density is the Right Choice

Travis Crayton's picture

This column originally appeared in the Chapel Hill News on Sunday, January 25.

By Travis Crayton & Molly De Marco

In 2014, “density” might well have been the word of the year in local government in Orange County.

Much of the debate about development in our communities boils down to preferences and emotions about the scale and density of proposed projects. (How tall? How many new units per acre?)

This Week in Orange Politics: January 26-February 2

OP Editors's picture

It’ll be another busy week from Orange County’s public bodies this week. Both the Chapel Hill Town Council and county Board of Commissioners will hold their annual retreats, and both will also hold other meetings where the Ephesus/Fordham Renewal District and associated public improvements will be up for discussion. The Hillsborough Board will get a status update on an invasive plant in the Eno River, while the Carrboro Alderfolks will consider the rural buffer. The county school board will discuss several school improvement plans.

Residents Give Feedback on Proposed Carrboro Arts and Innovation Center

Jeff Miles's picture

More than 40 people came out to Carrboro Town Hall earlier last night to give the Board of Alderman their thoughts about a proposed Carrboro Arts and Innovation Center downtown. The project, a joint effort of The ArtsCenter and Kidzu, would consist of a center with three performing arts center and kids museum located at at the intersection of Main and Roberson Streets.

Better Together

Travis Crayton's picture

A good friend of mine spent some time over the holidays in another college town, where his parents live. We were chatting upon his return to Chapel Hill, and he said something that really struck me: Compared to his parents’ town, Chapel Hill just doesn’t have a real sense of community.

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