PHOTOS: Town Hall Day for the 2017 Winners of the Great Places in North Carolina

On March 29th, APA-NC celebrated Town Hall Day in Raleigh by joining with legislators to recognize the 2017 winners of the Great Places in North Carolina initiative. Representatives Stephen Ross and David Rogers welcomed all to the Legislative Building to celebrate the dynamic partnerships that bring together local and state governments. Program Chair Kelly Bennett provided an overview of the Great Places in North Carolina program, describing this year’s categories, including the new Great Transformation category. APA-NC Chapter President Ken Bowers introduced all of the winning communities—Morehead City, Mebane, Lewisville, Winston-Salem, and Mooresville. Representatives from each community shared with those attendance a few words about what makes their respective place great. Behind every great place is North Carolinians working together to improve their community. APA-NC was pleased to join with legislators to celebrate these collaborative planning efforts. Legislators in attendance included Senator Paul Lowe, Jr, Senator Joyce Krawiec, and Senator David Curtis.        ...

Managing Community Engagement in Hickory, NC

Author: Charles Archer, Account Director, Freese and Nichols Every year, City Planners across North Carolina ask their citizens to reinvest in their communities by approving bond referendums for projects that will spur economic growth or enhance infrastructure to accommodate rapid population increases. This article spotlights the various tactics that the City of Hickory used to generate support for a bond election to fund projects that would attract millennials and revitalize the community. In the midst of economic decline, Hickory took a unique approach by engaging and accepting feedback from the community at the beginning of the process. By giving Hickory citizens a platform to be heard – coupled with educational and technology programs about the bond referendum and its related projects – the City demonstrated how public consensus can be leveraged when working to prioritize bond projects. One challenge many city planners face is achieving public consensus on the prioritization of bond or capital projects, given the varied interests, backgrounds and demographics across communities. In 2010, Freese and Nichols worked with the City of Hickory to identify community priorities with the goal of prioritizing capital projects to be financed by two bond referendums totaling $40 million. The economic context for this project provided an additional challenge. In 2010, Hickory was in economic decline. The City had lost 45,407 jobs and was rapidly losing residents in the key age group of 20-44. Between 2000 and 2010, the City lost approximately 25 percent of its residents in this age range. City leaders knew they had to make Hickory competitive with other midsize southeast cities by attracting private job creators and young adults....

Great Places 2017 Winners

Professional’s Category: Great Main Street Evans Street, Morehead City Evans Street and its adjoining waterfront, is the historic and cultural center for Morehead City and an important economic driver for the community. It has, in six short years, seen a transformation through a collaboration of private, public, and non-profit entities. The waterfront has gone from being a place with many empty storefronts and no pedestrian traffic to a destination known for festivals, entertainment, fine dining, unique shops, and world class fishing and diving. Professional’s Category: Great Main Street in the Making Clay Street, Mebane A Great Main Street in the Making is a street that is still being planned or developed, but has great potential for success. Clay Street in Mebane is just such a street. The street has shops, restaurants, and businesses that maintain the character and charm of the city.  The White Furniture Factory, at the end of Clay Street, was until recently, vacant and becoming an eye sore.  The City of Mebane, working with developers transformed the dilapidated building into 156 high end, unique, historic lofts in a $25 million renovation.  The complex is a key piece is helping with a vitality of downtown. The building will now have an estimated 250 people living, shopping, and eating right in downtown Mebane. Professional’s Category: Great Transformation Mooresville Mill, Mooresville Throughout much of the twentieth century, the Mooresville mill complex produced a variety of finished goods and was the largest single employer and tax payer in Iredell County. But, in 1999, due to profound changes in the domestic economy, the mill closed. Through fits and starts, different owners tried to...

Civic by Design 101: Charlotte’s Built Environment on Valentine’s Day 2017

Author: Thomas E. Low AIA CNU LEED AICP NCARB, Director, Civic By Design What do you love most about Charlotte’s build environment? Charlotte’s changing fast — and more massive new developments are coming every week. Are there ways we can help shape that growth? Political leaders, developers, planners, designers and ordinary citizens all hold pieces of the necessary knowledge. We need to learn from each other … and especially to learn how to talk together about what makes a well-planned livable city.  Time for CIVIC DESIGN 101 ! Since 2005, Charlotte’s long-running Civic By Design Forum has brought people together to discuss local growth issues. In 2017 the Forum begins a series of monthly workshops aimed at helping people of every background become informed, active participants in the city’s  growth.  Course attendees will receive a Certificate in Civic Design for participating in a minimum of 4 workshops.  The course and certification are free and open to the public. Together let’s raise the bar in 2017! For our February session of CIVIC DESIGN 101, please join us as perhaps a warm-up to venturing out into our beautiful city on Valentine’s Day. Join us, share your opinion, and receive a box of #candyhearts. CIVIC BY DESIGN 101 Tuesday, February 14, 2016 5:30pm — 6:30pm Levine Museum of the New South Free and open to the public Free car and bike parking at 7th the Street transit station info@civicbydesign.com www.civicbydesign.com Follow Us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram QUESTIONS/APPLICATION FORM?:  If you would like to officially sign up for our course, please contact info@civicbydesign.com to request the application form. PARTNERS:  Levine Museum of the New South http://www.museumofthenewsouth.org/ The mission of...

Post-Hurricane Matthew Resilient Redevelopment Plans

Author: Pete Sullivan, AICP, Co-Chair, APA-NC Communications and Public Affairs Committee In a release dated January 30, 2017, Governor Roy Cooper’s office is asking the 49 counties with Hurricane Matthew federal disaster declarations to assist in developing Resilient Redevelopment Plans. The plans will become the foundation for any supplemental funding requests from Congress, the NC General Assembly, or other sources. Time and expertise is sought from the 49 local governments affected by Hurricane Matthew in developing these plans. The plans should address community impact from the storm, and strategies for developing a resilient housing supply, infrastructure, economy, and natural environment. The targeted completion date is May 1, 2017. This planning initiative is in response to the legislature’s Disaster Recovery Act of 2016. The North Carolina Division of Emergency Management (NCEM) is managing the initiative, and the division is assembling expertise from state agencies, the private sector, and academia. During the planning process NCEM will hold three meetings to help municipalities validate storm damage data and develop redevelopment strategies. The first step is to identify a lead contact and assemble a planning team, and email names, phone numbers, and email addresses to: maribel.marquez@ncdps.gov   Questions should be directed to:...

North Carolina Chapter of the American Planning Association 2017 Summer Fellowship Program

Submitted by: Cherie Jzar, AICP The APA-NC Fellowship Program was created to increase diversity in the planning profession by fostering increased interest among minority students and women in the field of urban planning. Towards this goal, APA-NC is offering a $2,000 Summer Fellowship for women and minority students pursuing graduate or undergraduate planning degrees or planning related degrees. The fellowship period is from June 1 – Aug 30. Applications are due by 5PM on Friday April 7, 2017. The majority of Fellows’ work will be performed remotely, from a location of their choosing, as APA-NC does not maintain a permanent office space. Supervision and collaboration will primarily be done over phone/skype/email. There are two exceptions to this. In-person attendance is required for the fellow orientation and the 1-day APA-NC executive team retreat. Work will require use of a computer, a phone, and the internet, and the fellow must secure these on their own. Fellowship Objectives To gain knowledge about the planning process. To gain knowledge of best planning practices. To build skills for effective communication (written, verbal, presentation) with local governments, state and federal agencies, and the citizens. Conduct policy research on a current topic as assigned, producing a final report (may include an evaluation of how municipalities and counties are handling this policy throughout the state, highlighting successes and opportunities, or how other states are addressing this policy or process). Assist with planning a NC Planning Conference Workshop The $2,00 fellowship is available to graduate and undergraduate woman and minority students majoring in urban planning, urban design, urban studies, geography or public administration at an accredited university in...