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Asheville inches closer to police body camera rollout

The Asheville Police Department trails the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office in rolling out police body cameras — but the city is trying to catch up. Police Chief Tammy Hooper outlined a draft policy for the cameras at a recent panel discussion, and says the first cameras will be deployed by summer. We look into what needs to happen between now and then to make that schedule happen.

FOR THE LOVE OF BIKES: Asheville on Bikes' ninth annual Bike Love  event  Saturday will raise money for the nonprofit advocacy organization to work on bike-friendly policy changes. Above, a moment from last year's event. Photo by Pat Barcas

Asheville on Bikes rolls out Bike Love 2016

Who knew that heartbreak could be so good for the local cycling scene? Back in 2005, bike advocacy helped Mike Sule distract himself from the heartache of a tough breakup. Since then, however, Asheville on Bikes, the organization he subsequently founded, has become a well-known advocate on both local and state-level transportation issues. In support […]

The people have spoken, and they want a significant public space facing the Basilica of St. Lawrence and the U.S. Cellular Center. A City Council committee considers the way forward. Photo by Virginia Daffron

What’s next for Haywood Street site?

One clear winner from the 2015 City Council elections: local hopes for a public space for the city-owned lots facing the Basilica of St. Lawrence and the U.S. Cellular Center. Not so clear: exactly what kind of space Asheville needs and who will pay for it. The city’s Planning and Economic Development committee took up the hot potato issue to try to figure out how to move forward.

Leadership Asheville hosted a capacity crowd at its panel discussion on WNC's future energy needs on Feb. 3.

Reducing peak energy demand key to size of future Duke plant

Peak energy demand will determine the capacity of Duke Energy’s planned upgrades at the company’s Lake Julian power plant, according to speakers at a panel discussion on WNC’s future energy needs on Feb. 3. Speakers stressed the importance of partnerships between Duke Energy, local government and community partners to reduce demand and delay or eliminate a third new natural gas-fired generation unit planned for the Lake Julian site.

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Buncombe Commission­ers to discuss economic incentives­, public school needs

At the Tuesday, Feb. 2 Buncombe County Board of Commissioners meeting, the Board will consider an economic development incentive for Hi-Wire Brewing — an item that was dropped from the January agenda, facility needs surveys for both Asheville City Schools and Buncombe County Schools, and a zoning request east of Black Mountain.

URBAN FOREST  Unaware of the controversy over their fate, 23 mature oaks stand on a knoll overlooking Coxe Avenue. Photo by Virginia Daffron

Oaks’ last stand: South Slope urban forest won’t get city funds

If the 23 mature oak trees at 11 Collier Ave. on Asheville’s South Slope are to escape the chainsaw, it will have to be without the city’s help. While City Council followed through on its commitment to explore possible strategies for preserving the urban forest, in the end Council decided that committing resources to the effort in advance of significant private fundraising wasn’t a responsible use of taxpayer assets.