Crossing over

Come Wednesday, I will cross over, moving from the spectator side of the council dais to Participant Row. And that means Chapel Hill Watch must undergo a metamorphosis of its own. No longer will I be able to critique content after the fact. If I disagree with a colleague or hear a council member behaving […]

Winding down or unraveling?

I’ve heard tales of people, upon receiving an eviction notice, vandalizing the very place they call home. At the Nov. 16 meeting, we saw a bit of that behavior by some council members wrapping up their terms and others anxious about the change that newly elected officials might bring. The meeting opened with a developer […]

Council member’s U-turn

As we grow in population, we have to grow in infrastructure. Some of the current Town Council members don’t seem to understand that parallelism. That’s one reason voters elected four new representatives to council a couple weeks ago. But at last Monday night’s council meeting, one council member may have seen the light. At that […]

The Council Show

At the election night party I attended last week, the wife of a supporter mentioned that she’d gotten so caught up in the excitement of the campaign that she might even tune into what she called “The Council Show.” Certainly campaign and post-election coverage in the popular press loads expectation that episodes of The Council […]

The big money at stake

This election boils down to economic theory. One theory, held by the incumbents and a challenger who as an advisory board member voted in lockstep with them, aims to add enough luxury housing filled with high-wealth individuals that national chain stores will open branches in town. This group is banking on sales tax revenue and […]

Inspecting Inspections

Problems persist at the town’s Inspections Department. Despite nagging by the Home Builders Association of Durham, Orange and Chatham Counties, the response from the Planning and Sustainability Department, which oversees Inspections, has been sluggish. At the Oct. 19 Town Council meeting, Planning and Sustainability director Mary Jane Nirdlinger gave an update on progress in trying […]

Who determines livability?

Elkins Hills homeowners and renters turned out in force last Wednesday to convince council members to grant the protections of a Neighborhood Conservation District from what they see as the too-fast pace of development townwide. But one lone property owner and landlord gave council pause when he asked about how an NCD should be used. […]

A not-as-long goodbye

On 60 Minutes last night, President Obama talked about how he felt coming to the end of his legally allotted two terms and whether he wished he could serve a third. He said, as all incumbents do, that he was proud of what he had accomplished so far in office and that there was more […]

Ask, and get real answers

Someone needs to tell the town’s Planning Department staff that Chapel Hill already has an ordinance that governs bed-and-breakfasts. Oh, wait. Someone already has. Several someones, in fact — the former director of planning, the town attorney and multiple people in the community, including Chapel Hill Watch — going back more than 15 years. And […]

How about yours?

Community members at last Monday’s Town Council meeting turned the “not in my backyard” philosophy on its head, asking instead, “Why not your backyard?” At the Sept. 21 meeting, developers presented their proposed plan for Amity Station, a tall apartment building on West Rosemary Street where Breadman’s sits now. The parcel is in the Northside […]