Asheville City Council

Asheville’s recreation centers will get increased security staffing, and the Asheville Police Department will hire two new officers charged with investigating gangs, City Manager Gary Jackson told Council members during their Oct. 23 meeting. Savings elsewhere in the department’s budget will pay for these positions, so no Council vote was needed. “We want to make […]

Asheville City Council

The Asheville City Council’s Oct. 16 meeting had all the elements of high drama—a controversial issue, an upcoming election, an overflow crowd, even a woman standing outside City Hall passing out placards decrying The Ellington. But in a scant 90 minutes, after hearing arguments for and against the planned downtown high-rise, Council members voted 6-1 […]

Asheville City Council

With little commotion, the Asheville City Council rezoned Montford Commons on Sept. 25. The roughly 10-acre, 220-unit residential and commercial development on the edge of the historic district will now fall under the “urban village” designation, which allows for higher-density residential areas. Signing up: As its stores grow larger, Ingles argues it warrants more signage. […]

Asheville City Council

At their two-hour Sept. 18 meeting, Asheville City Council members once again held off on rezoning portions of Merrimon Avenue and approving new rules governing development there after business and property owners reiterated concerns that the proposed changes were too stringent and would cause severe financial hardship. Merrimon’s future: Merrimon Avenue-area residents and businesses were […]

Asheville City Council

Two years after a community group shined the spotlight on some businesses’ violations of the city’s Unified Development Ordinance—and a year after those complaints were supported by a consultant’s report—Greenlife Grocery says it’s ready to take steps to address the problems. And Staples, which had not responded to several prior requests for a meeting with […]

Asheville City Council

With an overflow crowd in attendance on Aug. 21, City Council approved stronger rules to protect wetlands, streams and rivers from construction-related runoff, to bring the city into compliance with federal storm-water guidelines. Although city staff and some stakeholders called for a 50-foot development-free buffer along streams, Council members demurred in the face of opposition […]

Asheville City Council

Despite a less-than-encouraging response by the state Department of Transportation, Asheville is continuing to explore a locally developed plan for the I-26 connector. The big idea: This map, prepared by city staff, illustrates just how large an incorporated Leicester would be. Representatives from the DOT, the Federal Highway Administration and several engineering consulting firms weighed […]

Grass-roots organizers challenge partisan elections plan for Asheville

The Let Asheville Vote petition-drive organizers commandeered the front corner of a Merrimon Avenue coffee shop June 21 for a noon strategizing session. They had a rally coming up in City/County Plaza in three days, and they were still collecting ideas for speakers, musicians and signs. Leader Charlie Hume, an electrical engineer by trade, was […]

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Air fair?

People Advocating Real Conservancy, an Asheville community activist group, has decided to challenge the city’s policy of selling air rights to developers. At the same time, the group has placed an upset bid on air rights above the sidewalk at 82 Patton Avenue offered for sale to redevelopers of the old First Union Building.

Asheville City Council

Asheville City Council agreed at its May 15 session to begin the process of annexing three areas abutting city limits. The law won: Asheville City Council may boost the police budget by $1 million, providing for more personnel and additional tools to combat drugs and other crimes. photo by Jonathan Welch Unlike recent Council meetings […]

Going for the green

A March 15 workshop led by staffers from the Milwaukee-based Johnson Controls Inc. could point the way toward a substantive sustainability initiative for Asheville. Invited by the city’s Sustainable Energy and Environment Advisory Committee, company representatives led some 50 participants—including Mayor Terry Bellamy, City Manager Gary Jackson and many high-level city staffers—through a series of […]

Asheville City Council

With nearly two dozen annexation foes on hand, many sporting red shirts in a show of solidarity, the Asheville City Council spent a good portion of its marathon Feb. 27 meeting examining its ability—or rather inability—to lawfully expand the city limits. Take me to the river: Gradual rezoning of Asheville’s River District could help transform […]

Asheville City Council

A proposed 162-unit gated community adjacent to the Asheville Country Club appears to be on hold after City Council indefinitely tabled the developer’s request for a conditional-use permit. Besides placing the ball squarely back in the developer’s court, the case also raised the possibility of updating of some of Asheville’s subdivision regulations. “This is one […]