McFarlane: Dix deal close

Posted August 28, 2014

— Mayor Nancy McFarlane said Thursday that she is hopeful Raleigh could soon have a new deal to acquire the Dorothea Dix property from the state.

Raleigh officials have for years been working to obtain the 307-acre campus south of downtown for a "destination park." An agreement signed in December 2012 by then-Gov. Beverly Perdue was set aside last year when lawmakers threatened to void it, saying that the state got the short end of the deal.

Rather than go to court, Gov. Pat McCrory's administration and city officials agreed to renegotiate the deal. But those talks have often been contentious, with the state demanding to keep a portion of the property for Department of Health and Human Services offices and the city offering far less than what state officials asked and seeking to have the state pay for any environmental cleanup costs.

"It’s always been our preference to purchase all the property," McFarlane said. "I think, when you look at it and talk about starting to break it up, no matter what part you take out, you lose part of the value. Our goal is to still try and purchase all of it."

A new deal had been scheduled to be finished by June 1, but the city and state twice extended their negotiations, with the last deadline passing July 31.

Dorothea Dix property Dorothea Dix documents Dorothea Dix July 18 State of NC offer on Dix The Raleigh City Council met behind closed doors for an hour Thursday morning to "discuss negotiations for acquiring property between Western Blvd and Lake Wheeler Road." No public action was taken, but McFarlane said later that a new offer for the land could possibly happen this week.

"We’re very close," she said. "I think we’ll reach an agreement very soon."

McCrory spokesman Josh Ellis said the Governor's Office hadn't received a new offer as of late Thursday afternoon.

"However, we are still hopeful that a deal will be reached," Ellis said in an email.


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  • B.c. Jimmy Aug 29, 2014
    user avatar

    If you want a park, you have a HUGE one. Go out Glenwood Ave 15 minutes and bang a left into Umstead.

  • eric416 Aug 28, 2014

    Nice, would be wonderful to let the citizens if Wake County/tax payers input to decide what to do with the property. I will think a high ride condo apartment. #CAPITALCOMMONS

  • skeeter II Aug 28, 2014

    Hope the contract has a clause stating that if the Raleigh bond issue to pay for the purchase is not approved by the Raleigh citizens, then the deal is 'DEAD'!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • jwbmom1965 Aug 28, 2014

    Needs to be re-open for the mentally ill. We need a place our wounded veterans can go and be treated quickly and efficiently. The other hospitals of this magnitude are busting out at the seams.

  • lewiskr45 Aug 28, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Counties pay for schools, not cities.

  • Julienne Aug 28, 2014

    View quoted thread

    That's two different departments.
    Take your problem up with the DOT.

  • Jackson Smith Aug 28, 2014
    user avatar

    So Raleigh citizens will be paying for this land when a contract was already signed. The residents of this city will be screwed into paying for this "park" so that the folks from Wake Forest, Apex, etc. can all use it at our expense. How about repaving Sandy Forks Rd before you spend this money. That road is a crime with promises by both the State and City to fix it. Nothing is getting done.

  • Paul Donovan Aug 28, 2014
    user avatar

    From this article, it sounds like the city is in prep to make another offer, not that any deal is close to finalizing

  • itsyoureternalsoul Aug 28, 2014

    I think they should build a giant mental treatment facility there, ten times bigger than the last one!

  • a sports fan Aug 28, 2014

    View quoted thread

    perhaps--but often a showcase park system is a tremendous benefit to a city.

    Don't know terms yet, but in principle I favor this acquisition