Greenway1

Action Alert: Raleigh Greenway Threatened by Vocal Locals

A friend of RS and long-time Raleigh Greenway Champion, Sig Hutchison (aka, Mr. Green Jeans), sent out an alert this morning  regarding significant  opposition from a subdivision to routing a critical portion of the fabulous Raleigh Greenway through their North Raleigh neighborhood.   Sig is trying to rally greenway supporters to attend a public meeting and beat back the greenway opponents.

I have (infrequently, alas) biked the greenway in North Raleigh and it already weaves in and out of public streets at several points.   In fact, some very nice neighborhoods are bisected by the path and they seem unharmed.  I don’t know all the facts (and plan to attend the meeting to discover them) but I suspect this is simply another case of the NIMBY’s (Not In My Backyard) standing in the way of progress.

The big meeting is January 21st  at 6:00 pm at City Hall — but you can also send an email to express your thoughts to city leaders.   Sig has the relevant email addresses and a lot of interesting background material below:

Action Alert – Action Needed

Your Greenways Are under Threat!!!!

(Please Forward)

Within several years, your greenway system in the Triangle will soon span hundreds of miles from the Falls Lake Dam through Raleigh or down the Neuse River to Umstead Park, Cary (and many more towns and cities) connecting up to the American Tobacco Trail and then to Durham. AMAZING!!!! But now the greenway system is under threat of being severed by a small group of VERY vocal neighbors in Summerfield North subdivision, (North Raleigh off Strickland Rd.) who are literally objecting to signage directing users through their subdivision on public streets and sidewalks for the 2 ½ blocks to where the greenway restarts heading south towards Shelly Lake. Staff has said they have never seen such a rude and vocal group of citizens at a public meetings shouting down our supporters and basically making a spectacle. They proposed two alternate routes that would add unnecessary time, cost and distance to a direct link though the neighborhood. (You might be reading the ongoing battle in the N. Raleigh News) They are making the same old tired arguments about crime, vandals and property values; all of which is totally untrue and in fact, the opposite is true.

Property Values

http://www.railstotrails.org/resources/documents/resource_docs/tgc_economic.pdf

Crime

http://www.railstotrails.org/resources/documents/resource_docs/Safe%20Communities_F_lr.pdf

What can you do?

Contact members of the Raleigh City Council and the Parks and Greenways Advisory Board

 

Mayor – Charles Meeker – charles.meeker@ci.raleigh.nc.us
District A – Nancy McFarlane – nancy.mcfarlane@ci.raleigh.nc.us (This is in her District)
At-Large – Russ Stephenson – russ.stephenson@ci.raleigh.nc.us (Chair, Public Works Committee)
District B – John Odom – john.odom@ci.raleigh.nc.us (Member, Public Works Committee)
District E – Bonner Gaylord – bonner.gaylord@ci.raleigh.nc.us (Member, Public Works Committee)
District C – James West – james.west@ci.raleigh.nc.us (Mayor Pro Tempore)
At-Large – Mary-Ann Baldwin – mary-ann.baldwin@ci.raleigh.nc.us
District D – Thomas Crowder – thomas.crowder@ci.raleigh.nc.us

Entire City Council at onceCitycouncilor@ci.raleigh.nc.us

Then CC. the Members of the Parks & Greenways Advisory Board

Mr. Eugene Weeks (Chair) – eweeks1@bellsouth.net

Mr. Jimmy Thiem (Vice-Chair) – jthiem@hagersmith.com

Ms. Gail Till –   gtill@nc.rr.com

Mr. Greg Barley – gbbarley@msn.com

Mr. Kevin Brice – Kmbrice@nc.rr.com

Ms. Doris Burke – johnnieburke@bellsouth.net

Mr. Jay Chaudhuri – jay.j.chaudhuri@gmail.com

Mr. Mark Turner – jmarkturner@gmail.com

Mr. Scott Reston – scott@therestons.com

Ms Rebecca Oxholm – rboxholm@gmail.com

Ms. Jan Pender – jan@ctnc.org

Ms. Elaine Perkinson – eperky@bellsouth.net

Ms. Shoshanna Serxner – sserxner@nc.rr.com

Mr. Christopher Smith – csmith5@nc.rr.com

Mr. Gerald Wright – Gerald.Wright@Duke.edu

Subject: Honeycutt Greenway

“Please complete the Honeycutt Greenway in North Raleigh in the most direct way possible, including a direct link through Summerfield North. Our greenways are of real value to our community and the interconnection of our system is one of its greatest strengths.”

You can add about how much you love and use the greenway, and how much you appreciate the City Council funding the expansion of our greenway system if you would like. Sign it and your good to go.

And/Or

 

You Can Attend a Meeting

We need some people in the audience to counter the large group of opposition that will be out in force. You don’t need to say anything but simply be there to support the greenways. In talking with City Councilors and Parks Board members, this group is a very intimidating crowd and we need to neutralize their impact so our elected officials will have the support and courage to do the right thing. Most importantly, this sets a precedent for elected officials and Boards in the future to do the right thing when uninformed neighbors show up trying to sever the greenway. These elected and appointed leaders need to know that the public support the greenway system and most importantly, the interconnectivity of our system.

Meetings

Parks, Recreation & Greenways Advisory Board

Thursday, January 21st, 6:00 pm, City Council Chamber of the Raleigh Municipal Building, Avery C. Upchurch Complex, located at 222 W. Hargett Street, Raleigh, North Carolina.

You can sign up for a 2 minute public comment at the beginning but this is not necessary

(But your presence is important)

City Council Meeting

Tuesday, February 2nd at 1:00 in the Council Chambers, 2nd Floor Municipal Building

222 W. Hargett St. Raleigh, NC

The meeting starts at 1:00 pm, This will be part of the PRGAB report that should be around 2:00 but you never really know. They could approve it or refer it to the Public Works Committee, (Most likely) to be worked out there and then to come back to City Council at a later date.

Public Works Committee

Tuesday, February 9th at 5:00, and Tuesday, February 23rd 5:00 (2nd and 4th Tuesday)

Council Chambers 2nd Floor – 222 W. Hargett St. Raleigh, NC

Once in Public Works, Chairperson Stephenson decides when it is to be placed on the agenda, so we won’t know till later when it will be heard by the PW committee. If you are planning to attend these later meetings, e-mail me at Sig@SigHutchinson.com and I can keep you posted to the latest information.

I’ll thank you in advance for your support and attention. Rarely do I ask for help and when it do, I promise it’s important!!!

Sig Hutchinson

Sig@SigHutchinson.com

4 replies
  1. Craig Chapman
    Craig Chapman says:

    I’m a resident of Summerfield North, a supporter of Raleigh’s Greenways and an opponent of the city’s proposed plan for the Honeycutt Trail extension.

    I need to correct a few factual oversights in Mr. Hutchinson’s appeal.

    First, the Greenway system is not under attack. Every neighbor I’ve spoken to supports the city’s greenway initiative. We are opposed to the unprecedented routing of the greenway onto our neighborhood’s sidewalks and past our front yards. If we truly opposed the greenway system we wouldn’t have gone to the trouble of designing alternative routes that the city could use to connect the Honeycutt Trail. Before you voice support for Mr. Hutchinson’s message take the time to see the proposed routes.

    Second, this is not another case of NIMBY–it’s a case of NIMFY (Not In My Front Yard). For the first time the city is proposing to use the city’s sidewalk easements to route greenway traffic past the driveways, mailboxes and front doors of a neighborhood. Residents of Summerfield North won’t have the option of putting up privacy fences, if we feel uncomfortable having hundreds of strangers walking and riding past our living room windows.

    Third, the alternative routes suggested by the neighborhood would cost less than the city’s original proposal. The city’s own analysis concedes that.

    Fourth, we are concerned about our property values. Mr. Hutchinson touts statistics showing how the presence of a greenway helps increase property value. We don’t dispute that–we merely point out that those situations don’t apply in this case. Ask a realtor if having greenway access helps increase the value of a home and they’ll all say “Yes”. Ask them if running the greenway past the front door helps the property’s value and they’ll all say “No”.

    Fifth, Mr. Hutchinson suggests that Summerfield North residents are only upset about the additional signs that would come with the greenway. The city’s proposal calls for concreting the sidewalks ten feet in from the curb. How would that look in front of your house? The bigger objection is what greenway traffic does to the fabric of a neighborhood. If you’ve ever walked around Shelly Lake, imagine all that foot and bike traffic going past your house, crossing your driveway, dodging around your mailbox and plowing past your school children as they walk to West Millbrook Middle School. That should give you an appreciation for Summerfield North’s desire to re-route the greenway in way that doesn’t disrupt our lives.

    Please feel free to email the City Council in support of our greenways. But don’t be fooled by Mr. Hutchinson’s deceptive wording into supporting something you don’t intend. I suggest making a few minor edits to his message. “Please complete the Honeycutt Greenway in North Raleigh in a way that preserves the value of living in this great city.”

  2. Amy Davis
    Amy Davis says:

    Summerfield North does not hate greenways! In fact, we love the idea of green space in our city and we have offered alternatives that don’t run through the front yard of homes. We have worked desperately with neighbors and the city not to resist the greenway concept but to re-route this ill-advised plan.

    The city’s decision to put a greenway in front of homes and allow the 60% of the design to be complete before informing those who would be negatively impacted is both wrong and is a disservice to taxpayers, a disservice which began with the site of the most logical path of the greenway was allowed by the city to be developed into the subdivision which is now Weathersfield Townhomes.
    When I purchased my home, I did my research and there was nothing on public record that would give me a clue that a greenway could come through my front yard. I don’t hate greenways I just would have wanted to be able to make an informed decision when I purchased my home.

    If you ask the parks department, you will learn there is a route planned that is parallel to the path they want to put in our front yards. It is on the books and is one of the alternates we offered. This route makes much more sense then a front yard greenway. What is planned is not an amenity or a greenway experience. If this space was running behind homes in a green space, we would not be having this discussion as the greenway would then be an amenity for the neighborhood.

  3. Craig Chapman
    Craig Chapman says:

    I’m a resident of Summerfield North, a supporter of Raleigh’s Greenways and an opponent of the city’s proposed plan for the Honeycutt Trail extension.

    I need to correct a few factual oversights in Mr. Hutchinson’s appeal.

    First, the Greenway system is not under attack. Every neighbor I’ve spoken to supports the city’s greenway initiative. We are opposed to the unprecedented routing of the greenway onto our neighborhood’s sidewalks and past our front yards. If we truly opposed the greenway system we wouldn’t have gone to the trouble of designing alternative routes that the city could use to connect the Honeycutt Trail. Before you voice support for Mr. Hutchinson’s message take the time to see the proposed routes.

    Second, this is not another case of NIMBY–it’s a case of NIMFY (Not In My Front Yard). For the first time the city is proposing to use the city’s sidewalk easements to route greenway traffic past the driveways, mailboxes and front doors of a neighborhood. Residents of Summerfield North won’t have the option of putting up privacy fences, if we feel uncomfortable having hundreds of strangers walking and riding past our living room windows.

    Third, the alternative routes suggested by the neighborhood would cost less than the city’s original proposal. The city’s own analysis concedes that.

    Fourth, we are concerned about our property values. Mr. Hutchinson touts statistics showing how the presence of a greenway helps increase property value. We don’t dispute that–we merely point out that those situations don’t apply in this case. Ask a realtor if having greenway access helps increase the value of a home and they’ll all say “Yes”. Ask them if running the greenway past the front door helps the property’s value and they’ll all say “No”.

    Fifth, Mr. Hutchinson suggests that Summerfield North residents are only upset about the additional signs that would come with the greenway. The city’s proposal calls for concreting the sidewalks ten feet in from the curb. How would that look in front of your house? The bigger objection is what greenway traffic does to the fabric of a neighborhood. If you’ve ever walked around Shelly Lake, imagine all that foot and bike traffic going past your house, crossing your driveway, dodging around your mailbox and plowing past your school children as they walk to West Millbrook Middle School. That should give you an appreciation for Summerfield North’s desire to re-route the greenway in way that doesn’t disrupt our lives.

    Please feel free to email the City Council in support of our greenways. But don’t be fooled by Mr. Hutchinson’s deceptive wording into supporting something you don’t intend. I suggest making a few minor edits to his message. “Please complete the Honeycutt Greenway in North Raleigh in a way that preserves the value of living in this great city.”

  4. Bob Mulder
    Bob Mulder says:

    What market proof is there that shows that greenways that uses expanded sidewalks in the front of houses adversely affects value? The word of a real estate agent is not enough.

Comments are closed.