Goodwill and Governor's Club: The Silence is Deafening


Good Folks of Chapel Hill and Orange County,

I am surprised there has been no discussion on this forum regarding the recent rejection of the Goodwill Distribution Store in the vicinity of the affluent Governor’s Club. In at least two letters to the Chapel Hill News, GC residents make the case based on among other things, that such a store would adversely affect property values (e.g.,  Property values are a legitimate and reasonable concern which affects all homeowners and not just  GC homeowners. We residents of the residential, family neighborhoods of Parkside and Northwoods also face a development which will likely adversely affect our quality of life (and property values, though these are the least of our concerns): The 70 bed homeless shelter (yes let’s call it what it is) to be placed in the middle of our neighborhood.

GC all but gets a pass for this rather selfish display of NIMBYism on this forum (though bravo to the Chapel Hill News for calling them out).  In contrast, what is even more surprising and a bit puzzling, is the strong response any  opposition to locating the IFC on Homestead Road has received. When these concerns have been raised by Steve Wells it was called “sad” and “sad indeed” that we should even consider opposing such a noble cause (and note property values were not even raised in Steve’s posts!).  In a startling display of callous indifference, Cam Hill in this forum even stated that since we were  lucky enough to get a park”  we ought to have an “open mind” about (yet more) community services (this in addition to the Freedom House Recovery Center, halfway houses and the Women’s Shelter). But what is surprising and a bit hypocritical is that GC was not also taken to task for not having an “open mind”. Even more disappointing, recent rhetoric by Mayor Kleinshmidt and the Town Council has made it sound like the IFC shelter at Homestead is a done deal and they will have little patience to hear residents concerns openly and fairly.One can’t help but wonder and ask the obvious question—what makes GC so special so that they can’t be besmirched in the slightest while we residents of Parkside and Northwoods shoulder major community services without full consideration of our concerns of how additional development will affect us?  There are some obvious inferences one could make—connections, money, etc, which we residents of Parkside and Northwoods generally lack in comparison to the well heeled residents of GC, but in the progressive liberal town of Chapel Hill, this scenario is too disappointing and saddening for me to consider.  I think a magnanimous gesture on the part of GC and true show of progressivism would be to volunteer to take the 70 bed shelter in their neighborhood and we will take the Good will Store at Homestead Drive.  But if they thought Goodwill would affect their property values, just imagine what a 70 bed homeless shelter will do.

Tim Wade




Tim,Perhaps there hasn't been as much interest/discussion on this forum about the rejection of the Goodwill store by Governors Club residents because the Governors Club is in Chatham County and the elected officials and residents of Chapel Hill have no say about the matter.  That, of course, doesn't mean we can't express an opinion but such opinions will probably be received by Chatham residents and officials as warmly as we receive theirs relating to matters within our jurisdiction.   

I must confess I have a hard time listening to these people who oppose the IFC plans to establish a program for homeless men at the corner of Homestead & MLK Blvd. And here they are fretting about whether anyone will listen to their concerns.  After all the lies and misinformation spread so far by these opponents I not only feel growing deafness, I fully understand if Council members yawn in their face.Study the GC tactics and throw in the Tea Bags, there’s lots of tips that can be picked-up for the anti-IFC campaign.   Hurry! 

I, personally, do not relate to Governor's Club residents.  Though I admit it's wrong, I guess I have a "rich snob" stereotype of them.  The IFC shelter debate is among people I consider my neighbors, so the NIMBYism embarrasses me more.

 I don't claim that this point of view is in any way correct.  It's just why I have done little more than grumble to my wife about GC and Goodwill.


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