Asheville wants to end homelessness, right? That’s a noble cause, and I support the good intentions behind this effort. But if Asheville is ever going to achieve this lofty goal, we need to be honest about a few things first. 1) There’s a segment of Asheville’s homeless population that chooses it as a “lifestyle.” Take […]
Asheville City Council member Robin Cape says she wasn’t trying to pour gasoline on the fire when she asked for a Council discussion on the idea of a moratorium on downtown development. She just wanted to hear options from the city attorney and perhaps gauge where her fellow Council members stood on the matter. But […]
City parking, no matter the city, can often be an iffy proposition, especially in a place as vibrant and popular with tourists as Asheville. But that doesn’t mean there’s not enough spots to go around, Council member Brownie Newman told fellow members before they unanimously accepted a parking study conducted by Cary, N.C., firm Kimley-Horn & Associates at Council’s March 25 meeting.
Faced with a host of infrastructure wants and needs, Asheville City Council members were nonetheless reluctant to charge ahead with a proposed bond issue during their inaugural work session on March 18. An uncertain economic future seemed to dampen the prospects for issuing some $10 million worth of general-obligation bonds. Chief Financial Officer Ben Durant […]
At its March 11 meeting, the Asheville City Council unanimously approved an 11-story, mixed-used building planned for downtown’s south end. Movin’ on up: The planned 11-story Zona Village North One condos will add more vertical scale to downtown’s southside, joining the 15-story Zona Loft planned nearby. Slated to include condos as well as office and […]
Asheville City Council members voted to remove Mayor Terry Bellamy from her lead oversight role in personnel matters at its March 11 meeting. The matter, which was added to the agenda at the beginning of the meeting, didn’t sit well with Bellamy or Council member Carl Mumpower, who called the maneuver “reprehensible.”
According to Asheville’s Building Safety Department, City Council last year authorized almost double—double—the already astronomical dollar value of development that occurred in 2006! Our progressive Council has left a carbon footprint on our beautiful mountains that would make Halliburton blush with environmental embarrassment. How many oxygen-making trees have been permanently displaced by inert impermeables? Thousands? […]
Recognition of local Nobel laureates from the Asheville-based National Climatic Data Center will kick off Asheville City Council’s March 11 meeting.
The Asheville City Council chamber has seen its share of controversy … but helmets? Scores of people wore protective headgear to Council’s Feb. 26 meeting—not because of physical danger, however, but to show support for a new city bicycle plan. On a roll: Helmet-clad cyclists showed up in droves to support Asheville’s bike plan at […]
They’re the bane of many city residents: drivers who ignore the posted speed limits on Asheville’s residential streets. But outside of more police enforcement, the methods used to slow speeders down often is too costly and too slow to come about because of a complicated and time-consuming process necessary to erect traffic-calming measures such as […]
How much of an impact did the partisan-elections backlash have on Asheville’s City Council? Enough that when Council member Brownie Newman brought the idea of a citizens’ commission on local elections to the table during Council’s Feb. 12 meeting, he got no support from even his staunchest allies. Not even a proposal merely to hold […]
Inking a contract with an outside firm to develop a Downtown Master Plan, a report on regional economic development initiatives, and a Council discussion in preparation for a March 19 public hearing on city annexation, are among the highlights on City Council’s Feb. 19 meeting agenda.
As Asheville City Council members convened for a two-day retreat to chart their legislative goals for the year, word came that the city’s financial fortunes appear to be retreating as well. While the situation isn’t dire, Chief Financial Officer Ben Durant told Council members during the Feb. 4-5 planning session, the city may be facing […]
As City Council members sat down this week for a two-day strategic retreat to chart their legislative goals for the year, word came that the city’s financial fortunes appeared to be retreating as well.
Driving out the Leicester Highway from Patton Avenue, it narrows from five lanes to two, and the strip malls and fast-food joints give way to old-school mechanics and busted-up portable signs. Later on, that same highway continues up the mountains and around sharp curves into miles of old farmland that eventually lead up to Sandy […]
Despite numerous alleged incidents of serious police misconduct over the past couple of years, Asheville City Council members voted Jan. 15 against creating an official citizen-oversight board. Conceding that it is a “bit of a complex topic,” police Chief William Hogan nonetheless lobbied against the idea, citing several existing layers of police oversight and reiterating […]
Despite alleged incidents of serious police misconduct over the past couple of years, the City Council decided in a 5-2 vote at its Jan. 15 meeting to nix the creation of an official citizen’s police-oversight board.
Leicester residents again failed to win the Asheville City Council’s endorsement of their attempt to incorporate. But the closeness of the vote at Council’s Jan. 8 meeting and a subsequent discussion by Council members made it clear that the campaign has gained support in recent months and will most likely be heard from again. The […]
Police Chief William Hogan will present his recommendations concerning a proposed citizen’s police-oversight board, and Council members will receive an update on an outside consultant’s evaluation of the Asheville Design Center’s proposed alignment of the Interstate 26 connector at their Tuesday, Jan. 15 meeting.
With his first full-blown Asheville City Council meeting just a couple of weeks away, Bill Russell has a lot on his plate as he begins his four-year term—and his first foray into representative politics. As someone who ran to bring more political balance to Council, rather than address any specific hot-button issues, Russell admits that […]
The Asheville City Council’s Dec. 11 meeting—the last one in 2007—saw some shuffling of seats as the newly elected Bill Russell replaced outgoing Council member Bryan Freeborn, and incumbent Jan Davis got the nod as vice mayor. This seat taken? New Council member Bill Russell (right) takes a seat vacated by Bryan Freeborn as re-elected […]