Letter: Richmond Hill shouldn’t become thoroughfare

Graphic by Lori Deaton

I’d like you to imagine a peaceful street of older brick ranch homes just 3 miles from downtown Asheville. For decades, this street is somewhat forgotten, even neglected. But then suddenly, things start to change. A retired engineer builds on a tasteful addition, a permaculturist two doors down installs raised garden beds, a first-time homeowner replaces old shingles with a new metal roof, a single mother plants fruit trees for future inhabitants to enjoy.

Day by day, step by step, the neighborhood improves. People walk with children to their beloved park; friendships evolve organically the way they used to in bygone days; even the elderly in a nearby rest home are filled with hope.

What I’ve described is the neighborhood of Richmond Hill, which is home to 100-plus modest homes of teachers, caregivers, working-class people, Richmond Hill Park, Western North Carolina Baptist Home and the National Guard Armory. It is a neighborhood to be celebrated, encouraged to continue its wondrous, admirable evolution.

That is, it should not be allowed to become a public thoroughfare to the proposed Bluffs on River Bend development of 1,500 luxury condos. Richmond Hill is the destination for those who already live here. If you haven’t been up this street in a while, I encourage you to visit the park. I urge you to drive through this neighborhood and appreciate it for what it is, while open-mindedly envisioning the devastation that would accompany thousands of vehicles, should Bluffs on River Bend be approved.

Great leaders are those who can hold two equal and opposing viewpoints, and I hope that our local council members of the town of Woodfin and the city of Asheville will take the first step to come see this place we call home.

— Robert McGee


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7 thoughts on “Letter: Richmond Hill shouldn’t become thoroughfare

  1. Enlightened Enigma

    yes, admirable evolution is lovely …sometimes it involves adding more places for HUMANs to live.

  2. Robert McGee

    Adding more places while making the habitat unendurable isn’t humaN.

    • ashevillain7

      “Adding more places while making the habitat unendurable isn’t humaN.”

      On the contrary, I believe this is one characteristic that is quintessentially “human”. What else have humans (more specifically, civilization) done if not lay waste to any and all aspects of the natural world that don’t fit our goals? We certainly do not practice ‘leave no trace.’

      Not that I agree with the development, but “making the habitat unendurable” is a pretty defining characteristic of humans. We’re also pretty good at correcting our mistakes (but only when we really really want to).

  3. Robert

    Asheville City Council has announced their slogan for the month of February: LOVE ASHEVILLE, SUPPORT LOCAL.

    In honor of this great idea, PLEASE HELP us raise funds to STOP THE BLUFFS from destroying the lovely local Asheville neighborhood of RICHMOND HILL by donating to the Richmond Hill & River Rescue GoFundMe Campaign during the MONTH OF FEBRUARY.

    Richmond Hill & River RESCUE, organized by River Rescue
    SAVE RICHMOND HILL. STOP THE BLUFFS. Help us fight the Bluffs at River Bend, a proposed me… River Rescue needs y…

    Please also consider WRITING to Asheville City Council, URGING them to JOIN US IN LEGAL STANDING to ensure that The Bluffs developer BUILDS HIS BRIDGE BEFORE BEGINNING CONSTRUCTION.



    Thank you!

  4. Robert

    You may continue to follow the Bluffs at Richmond Hill & River Rescue facebook page.

  5. R.G.

    ***Attend Woodfin Town Commissioners Meeting – August 17th at 6:30pm (Woodfin Town Hall/see Town of Woodfin website for updates)

    We invite the public to address the commissioners during public comment. Demand they protect the health and public safety of residents and neighbors.

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