Downtown Partnership Social Hour
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
5pm to 7pm
Join the Downtown Partnership for a social hour at Cholanad Restaurant. Enjoy free hors d'oeuvres on their new outdoor deck. Drop by and catch up with old friends and make some new ones! All are invited.
Downtown Partnership Social Hour
"Downtown Free Library" established by C.H. Downtown Partnership to share free books in unused newspaper bins. Cool!Blurt Submitted by Ruby Sinreich on Wed, 01/16/2013 - 10:05am.
Tonight, the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership held its 2nd of four moving conversations inspired by urbanist and community activist Jane Jacobs. This moving conservation, called Inspiring Innovative spaces, focused on existing and planned spaces downtown that promote interactions to spark ideas. Jacobs noted that the most successful public spaces are those with intense use nearby.
This event is always a good time and a great way to meet your neighbors (if you live in Northside) and community leaders (if you live anywhere). From Facebook:
The GNI Neighborhood Night Out and Block Party is an annual community event and opportunity to build strong, healthy connections between student and non-student residents of neighborhoods surrounding Downtown Chapel Hill and UNC. The event is free, and includes food (BUNS!, Ben & Jerry's, McAlisters), music, games and prizes for all ages. This event is sponsored by the Town of Chapel Hill, UNC-Chapel Hill, the Carolina Union Activities Board (CUAB), Empowerment, Inc., and the Downtown Partnership.
Meg McGurk has taken the helm of the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership after five years as its assistant director. I have worked with Meg for four years in the planning of Project Connect, an annual event where persons at risk for homelessness and those experiencing homelessness can receive services. Meg and I recently talked about her goals for the Downtown Partnership now that she is its executive director, including her thoughts about arts-driven economic development, parking, panhandling, vacant buildings, and new development.
At the Town Council meeting Monday night, I and many others felt frustrated, after issuing our statements and as the Council was deliberating, unable to respond to or correct the circuitous discussion between council members, Chief Blue, Mr. Stancil, Mayor Kleinschmidt, and Attorney Karpinos.
On Monday, the Downtown Partnership posted its vision for Chapel Hill on 2020 Buzz, the official blog of the Chapel Hill 2020 process. The vision apparently stems from a meeting that the Chapel Hill 2020 Outreach Committee had with members of the Chamber of Commerce and the business community before Thanksgiving.
The vision isn’t so much a vision as it as wish list. It calls on the town to expedite the review process for development downtown and provide for a whole host of a uses-by-right in the area so that new development downtown wouldn’t need any approval on top of building permits, zoning complains and certificates of occupancy. It also talks about building some new streets (especially in the north-south direction) downtown, making some changes to the way Chapel Hill does it zoning and ensuring regional transit is centered in the area.
When the former Yates Motor Co. Building was taken over on November 13th it was in the process of becoming the temporary home of an art installation for the holiday season - an effort led by the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership. Those events derailed the art installation, but did not curtail it. The art installation will be unveiled this Friday, December 9th, 2011. The road has not been an easy one as described in this blog post by Meg McGurk of the Downtown Partnership.
Last night while much of OP was intently watching our live online candidate forum for aspiring Aldermen, the Chapel Hill Town Council was discussing proposed new foodtruck regulations. To me they sound very limiting, including provisions that they cannot operate within 100 feet of an open restaurant, that they can only be located on private property, and that the truck and property must both get permits from the Town. Even with these restrictions, WCHL's Elizabeth Friend reported that the Chapel Hill Chamber of Commerce and the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership opposed the change.
This makes it pretty clear to me that the perceived interests of their members is more important to the Chamber of Commerce than the success and sustainability of our local economy.
Yesterday there was a community meeting for Northside residents to learn about the evolving framework for downtown development. The Downtown Partnership, who is a partner with the Town of Chapel Hill in the development of the plan, live-tweeted the meeting at @CHDpartnership for folks who couldn't attend.
It sounds like it was a very good start, although residents will need to do more digesting and analysis before they have an informed response to the proposal. Here's what the Partnership tweeted...