“We don’t need more development in the city when our streets can barely sustain what we currently carry.”
“Milton Ready’s assessment is right on. An example would be the number of ugly hotels that seem to continue to be built, which makes no sense.”
“Until the professed advocates of affordable housing and assistance for the homeless get off their BUTS and honestly attack these issues, nothing significant will happen.”
“He did an excellent job in calling our attention to the wrongheadedness and shortsightedness that have turned our beloved town into a tourist mecca rather than a community that works for its residents.”
“So development will continue unabated in the county regardless of what the city does, but we have a say in how development will be regulated within the city limits.”
“Do we really believe that reducing open space in order to build more units per development will actually produce more affordable housing?”
“As eco-theologian Thomas Berry stated, it will require a universal leap of consciousness — a group effort — if we Homo sapiens are to have any kind of real future here on this garden planet we were given.”
“By the end of the decade, I predict that … Newbies who, in 2022, called out longtime residents as NIMBYs for opposing unbridled development will, by 2029, be NIMBYs themselves.”
Xpress readers offered up a raft of thought-provoking letters to the editor, commentaries and comments about local affairs in 2021.
“Many activists, citizens, eco-groups, the Urban Forestry Commission and the Neighborhood Advisory Committee are justly appalled by and formally opposed to PUDD’s machination.”
“The name of the proposal is the ‘open space amendment,’ and the goal is to dramatically slash, and in some cases, eliminate, the open space that developers are now required to provide with larger construction projects.”
“The primary purpose of zoning laws should be to mitigate these externalized costs, to prevent development from being a burden on the community.”
“I hope that city leaders are also levying infrastructure fees on all past and future developers/landlords to pay for upgrades to city systems that are already stressed by all the new arrivals to our area.”
“Why can’t we have both? Sensible development with a conscience?”
“As someone who drives this stretch of road every day, I understand both sides of this controversy.”
Eight candidates are vying for three seats on the governing body for the town of roughly 8,000 people to the northwest of Asheville. Challengers and incumbents alike agree that concerns over development, particularly The Bluffs at River Bend proposal, are driving interest in a normally quiet race.
As part of the Local News Ideas-to-Action Series, the Virginia-based national media nonprofit American Press Institute awarded Xpress a $9,300 grant to create a guide to local government decision-making for land development. The guide will cover the stages of review that projects face on their way from concept to final approval, what aspects are considered at each step and what avenues exist for public input.
“City Council, we demand that you comply with the Unified Development Ordinance and deny the Killians’ request for a conditional zoning permit.”
“Downtown did need help, but it didn’t need to be turned into the tourist-oriented, overbuilt, overdeveloped mess that it has become.”
“We must protect our future and stop The Bluffs. In fact, the best use of Tourism Development Authority marketing dollars would be to buy the tract and put it into land conservation for future generations.”