ldhintz's blog

Ephesus Fordham Work Session

There was another well attended meeting  at lunch about Ephesus Fordham today. I asked questions about the projected differences in available Affordable Housing from Form Based Code vs. current Special Use Permit system for the area (they will respond later). I also asked if the property owners would have to pay a new stormwater fee (yes) and if the project could be developed to reduce the amount of stormwater run off. Currently the stated goals are to improve the water quality (reduce nutrients and dissolved solids) and maintain OR reduce the current amount of runoff. A number of neighbors are concerned about the increase in flooding. The watershed map shows the the Ef area is a relatively small amout of the watershed and probably is not the cause of the recent increase in flooding. There is probably some potential for reducing runoff with redevelopment as opposed to status quo. It sounds like there will be a town wide effort to increase the number of raingardens and other features to reduce runoff. (Something I promoted while running for Council.) There were a number of questions about runoff, flooding, traffic, greenspace, protection of current businesses and financing.

AP courses and minority enrollment

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Chatham Park and water quality

Thursday I attended a Sierra Club meeting in Pittsboro and learned more about the water issues associated with the huge Chatham Park development. The local goverment of Pittsboro will be deciding what happens there. First the area watershed has rare or endangered species of fresh water mussels and tiny fish called shiners. Of course it drains into Jordan Lake which is already impaired.   The state government has delayed the Jordan Lake water protection rules and has created a weird situation where if communities want to have better environmental rules they  will have to enact them this year with a 100% agreement vote. Also the state has reduced funding and resources for the state agencies that monitor and protect our water. Originally after hearing the Triangle Realtor presentation last summer I thought Chatham Park (for 55,000 people) was a done deal. I think there are a lot of reasons for believing it can not be that big. Much of land has streams and steep elevation and if logical stream buffers and slope rules are used that would limit what can be developed. The original proposal would result in population density and percentage

Cold Weather and libraries

Today there was a 2 hour delay for the public schools because of the cold weather. Carl got up at the usual time and walked to Southern Village to see a friend. I biked to the UNC campus and visited the Science Library Annex in Wilson. It's been a while since I have been there. The departamental libraries (Botany, Zoology, Chemistry, Geology etc.) have been combined.    A number of books are now in storage including many of the tropical birds books by Alexander Skutch. I was sad to see that many of the paper jounals are gone: the bound volumes of the classical ornithology journals have been discarded. I can't dojournal browsing anymore. (Since I am not a UNC student, I can't access the electronic journals.) I then explored the new eating places on Franklin (and overheard one conversation: room is locked, don't have the key, room mate isn't back with key due to cancelled flights.) The bike ride home was nice and cold. Hope the freeze kills the ticks and zancudos.

Advisory Boards

Last night the Town Council postponed their discussion of the new Advisory Boards until tonight 11/26 after the Central West Plan which begins at 6PM. I've emailed my suggestions but hope others will attend or write comments.

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