Local Politics

Raleigh's Moves Could Slow Growth

Posted March 19, 2008

— The City Council's recent decisions to ban garbage disposals, impose tough water restrictions and consider doubling impact fees on developers could soon begin putting the brakes on the city's growth.

In the last eight years, Raleigh has added 25 square miles and more than 40,000 dwellings. The number of new housing units represented a 33 percent jump since 2000.

"Our concern is that it's going to give us a negative impact on people wanting to buy a home," said Tim Minton, executive vice president of the Home Builders Association of Raleigh-Wake County. "If all of a sudden, the perception is it's going to cost you more to buy (and you) can't have a garbage disposal, if you've got a house in Johnston (County) and one in Raleigh, you might be sort of wanting to go in that direction."

Councilman Rodger Koopman said the time for Raleigh to rethink how it grows is overdue.

"I know that's a scary conversation, but we are now beginning to see that areas cannot continue to grow unless we're beginning to see that the physical resources are there," Koopman said. "That is a discussion worth having because, at the end of the day, I did not get elected to represent the people that move here. I got elected to represent the people that live here, and the people that live here are saying, 'Whoa. Wait a minute. How is this growth benefiting me?'"

Mayor Charles Meeker agreed that discussions about Raleigh's growth are helpful, but he doesn't see an effort by the City Council to slow growth.

"I don't think it's really a question of slowing the growth, but looking at the quality of it, being sure that we're very careful about our water," Meeker said. "Raleigh alone really can't slow growth because, if we stop something somewhere, the other folks will just go somewhere else in Wake County or in Johnston County or Franklin County. What we can influence is the quality of growth and where it occurs within the city limits.

"I think it's important our community discuss these things," he said. "I understand it gets heated sometimes – that's part of the public process – but in the end, we'll be in a better situation as a community."


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  • seeingthru Mar 20, 2008

    I have been here 27 yrs and the "pretty scenery" whipoorwills are things of the past, all we have now are cookie cutter homes, a huge mess on the roads and well-- just an unattractive vast sprawling mess --sorry

  • seeingthru Mar 20, 2008

    Thank you!! someone is starting to think!!!

  • PC is for Losers Mar 20, 2008

    Oh escape from wake. Whatya do, move to fancy Johnston County? Give me a break. Raleigh is excellent to live in. So it's growing very rapidly and has some growth management issues. The school system is still great, the roads are still decent (you been to Charlotte?), and water schmater. A once in 100 year drought hardly means that you should have planned for it. Nothing but whining. Being from here it's always been growing. Did I like getting bussed to school downtown? No. Did I whine relentlessly about it and make a sign? No. I got what's considered the best education in the state. If you don't like it then get on the council or school board. Suggest some changes, or, I guess just jet to some "better" place.

  • tab580642 Mar 20, 2008

    I don't live in wake county, but in general this state is always behind on everything but the larger populated areas are always talking about "growth." How & why push for "growth" when the roadways, schools, and now water supply are not available for such growth. We want the growth, but no casinos along the cost which could provide for more/better roads schools & public transportation. This state simply moves to slow in providing what's necessary for growth before growing!!

  • Escaped ftom Wake Mar 20, 2008

    Raleigh's Moves Could Slow Growth? Folks its gone way beyond that... The garbage disposal thing made the news way back here in Phoenix, Az. People thought it was hilarious and said they could understand why we left North Carolina. Lousy school board, lousy roads, inadequate water supply. About all you have left is a nice climate, and pretty scenery.

  • Justin T. Mar 20, 2008

    Yawn. Here we go again with another whiner thread.

    Look, we were just ranked #1 AGAIN on Forbes list of best cities for business. Things are good here and the council, by and large, is very pro-growth.

    We are in a drought... so we are trying to conserve water. This apparently bothers some people to a distraction.

    At least the 7 people on the council are fairly intelligent and diverse and it takes a consensus to approve an idea.

    I can't say I've ever seen 7 people on GOLO fit to lead a trip to the restroom, much less a city like Raleigh. Quit whining.

  • buckeye60 Mar 20, 2008

    Is Mayor Meeker the Pope? Do we need to kiss his ring? I think we have enough mandates. By the way does his have a garbage disposal. I ran my father's apartment complexes for over 20 years and this issue with grease down garbage disposals is trite, irresponsible and just plain inane. We have to replace pipes, unplug clogged drain with grease problem all without the aid of disposals. The power mongers on the city coucil need to ressay themselves and realize we are not puppets on a string. Our taxes pay there salaries. Maybe we need to revaluate the leadership and I use that term loosely. I wonder if Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini started this way. Shout out to all the citizens that have enough backbone to stand and be counted.

  • WRAL is joe_dirt Mar 20, 2008

    Another_Viewpoint WHEW! It's good you're not bitter.

  • Scubagirl Mar 20, 2008

    'Raleigh's Moves Could Slow Growth"
    not such a bad idea really.

  • Another_Viewpoint Mar 20, 2008

    In story after story I keep seeing that the Raleigh City Council (as well as other elected officials) are confused. They seem to think they were elected to rule over us instead of serve us, the public.