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  • dwntwnboy Dec 4, 2012

    "you'll have to run the low-income people surrounding the area out"- check out the home values around Dix, they have gone up and up and up. There is very little "low income" anything around there now. Heck, even the rents are getting scary high.

  • dwntwnboy Dec 4, 2012

    "Treat it like any other surplus property. Auction. If Raleigh has the most money fine"- then we should put up EVERY State park for auction then. Why should one part of the state get a park and others not?

  • dwntwnboy Dec 4, 2012

    "so the mentally ill have somewhere other than the streets to go"- they have a brand new hospital in Butner to go to. The old buildings would have cost more to refurbish than to build new.

  • dwntwnboy Dec 4, 2012

    "although the list of supporters is a who's who of Raleigh's rich and elite"- just like the ones who supported and got Central Park done in the mid 1850s. It wasn't the politicians, it was the people of means who wanted to make sure there was something for everyone to enjoy.

  • th009 Dec 4, 2012

    Just to correct some earlier comments - the property was not donated to the state, nor did Dorothea Dix found the hospital. During the 1840s, Ms. Dix lobbied a number of states to improve care for the mentally ill. In 1851, the NC legislature approved funds to purchase land and build the hospital. The property, formerly part of the Hunter Plantation, was renamed "Dix Hill" in honor of her grandfather (she would not let her own name be used). In 1959, 72 years after her death, the State Hospital at Raleigh was renamed Dorothea Dix Hospital.

    (Google "Dorothea Dix Hospital History")

  • delta29alpha Dec 4, 2012

    Maintain it as a mental health complex. That is the proper thing to do. Making it into a park will only benefit people living in Raleigh. Whatever is done, it should be of benefit to all of the citizens of the State of North Carolina.

  • nc creature Dec 4, 2012

    What about care for the cemetery on the Dix property?

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    No scubagirl, it's not necessarily a totally foregone conclusion, although the list of supporters is a who's who of Raleigh's rich and elite. Though, according to the news today, it's just a rubber stamp away.

    There's not a thing preventing it's return to it's donated purpose except the rich and powerful of local ilk who started the process of moving the mental health facilities off the land years ago.

    They have their eyes on the surrounding land for development. Much of which they already own. Follow the money. It'll lead you to the core of the matter.

    I don't hold out much hope that justice will be done, the influential have always gotten their way on this earth. And they're looking at a big payoff again with the taxpayers footing the bill as always.

    Once again.. the real money's not in the park land itself, it's the land around it. Much of it filled with low-income people that will be moved out of the way the same as the patients were.

  • Scubagirl Dec 3, 2012

    I agree, the absolute BEST thing to do with this is allow the patients who have been relocated to return and fix the place up so the mentally ill have somewhere other than the streets to go. However, I thought it was a foregone conclusion that the patients were/have leaving/left.

  • retiredindependentpopo Dec 3, 2012

    By the way geosol, I believe it' your girl ol' Bev who is pushing for this to go through. Forget the mentally ill who need this facility.

  • retiredindependentpopo Dec 3, 2012

    "The only people opposing this are greedy, out of state land developers . . . . "

    Do you have the facts to support such a "rant"? I didn't think so.

  • Danny22 Dec 3, 2012

    Oh, great, something else for the state to have to maintain off our tax dollar.

  • oleguy Dec 3, 2012

    it will become a acid park for hangouts ,, and a drug dealers flea Market

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    Bottom line Jim, the only people who deserve this land are the people it was given to as a place for them. And for anyone to claim otherwise is a less than flattering statement descriptive of their character. This world is currently overrun with highly disappointing people, and Raleigh is no exception. A hat-tip to the moment when money won't buy influence. A moment in all of our paths.

  • radium Dec 3, 2012

    The only people opposing this are greedy, out of state land developers that are hiding behind a so called conservative group that wants to block this. They are salivating at the prospect of destroying this land for profit.

  • ThomasL Dec 3, 2012

    As a native of this state and lived on dix property it blows my mind that this place of mental health founded by Dorothea Dix would be considered for anything else with all the people needing help and as some of the comments made here we need it reestablished as a mental health facility real soon!

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    geosol - It was your left wing buddies that stole the land from the hospital and the patients it was meant for. The only thing I'm for is returning it to it's rightful occupants.

    Like I said: "The only truly non-selfish course to take is to return the property to the purpose it was originally donated for. A healing and care location for the mentally ill."

    See if you can get your left winger buddies to go along with that one. Guess what, they won't. Because they stole it in the first place Mr. self-righteous geosob.

  • TomIn Ral Dec 3, 2012

    Boondoggle,let's hope that this can be stopped or overturned...

  • yorkcarolina Dec 3, 2012

    "Her and other Republican legislative leaders have called on Perdue to delay action on the plan until Republican Gov.-elect Pat McCrory has a chance to review the deal."

    News and Observer, you should be ashamed for printing this horrendous grammar error! It should read, "SHE and other Republican . . . ." English Grammar 101. No wonder children today are functionally illiterate: even the media -- presumably comprised of educated professionals -- cannot use English correctly.

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    Scubagirl - "I think keeping it as a park is a great idea!"

    What do you mean "keep it" as a park? It's NEVER been a park.

    If you read the article you'll see: "Dorothea Dix...came to Raleigh in the 1840s to scout out a site for a mental health facility".

    She bought the land and donated it to the State specifically to be used exclusively for the care of mental health patients. Not for a State park.

    What happened was these "park visionaries" decided they wanted a park and worked with the state to get rid of the hospital that the land was intended for.

    Raleigh doesn't don't deserve a park on this land. Again, the land has never been a park and wasn't donated to be a park.

    They've done nothing but run-roughshod over the good and Blessed nature of Dorothea Dix's original gift to the most needy among us.

    Now those needy are "out-of-sight out-of-mind" thanks to the efforts of a few greedy individuals who now claim to "deserve" a park.

    The greedy have no shame. And no justification.

  • geosol Dec 3, 2012

    some right winger wrote: "The only truly non-selfish course to take is to return the property to the purpose it was originally donated for. A healing and care location for the mentally ill."
    Except that's not what your right wing REPUBLICAN buddies (and maybe you) want to do with it. They want to sell it to developers. It will no longer belong to ALL of the citizens of North Carolina, it will belong to fat cat REPUBLICAN developers and their buddies in the legislature. Sorry about that!

  • mmtlash Dec 3, 2012

    IMO they should either keep it as a mental health campus or preserve it as a park, just don't sell it to private developers who will probably crowd the property with condos/apartments and retail/office buildings which will benefit only a few. If the property isn't going to continue to be used for it's original purpose at least allow the land to be preserved and put to public use

  • Barfly Dec 3, 2012

    Evidently we need another park so the homeless and/or mentally ill folks will have a place to congregate. Moore Square is getting crowded and Dix is a closer walk from the Wilmington Street Shelter.

  • retiredindependentpopo Dec 3, 2012

    Blah, blah, blah. Another biased geosol rant.

  • retiredindependentpopo Dec 3, 2012

    Wait a miute! I thought we needed mental health facilities. Or, is it parks we need more of? I'm confused. So, since I'm confused, should I go a mental health facility for help or to a park??

  • Scubagirl Dec 3, 2012

    I think keeping it as a park is a great idea! They have said the 'destination' park is like Central Park, not a theme park and I think it would be really nice to have. Yes it's prime real estate, but so is Central Park and we have enough concrete/asphalt and condos here as it is-many sitting empty.

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    geosol - "Let's see, you have short sighted and selfish"

    Really? What's more selfish? Running patients off of land that was promised to them for their healing, like Democrats did?

    Or fiscally responsible actions in the interests of ALL North Carolina taxpayers?

    Nothing can compare to the selfish actions of these Democratic neighborhood park proponents. They stuck it to the most helpless of us all to selfishly seek something for their essentially exclusive benefit.

    The only truly non-selfish course to take is to return the property to the purpose it was originally donated for. A healing and care location for the mentally ill.

    Anything less than that is honorably unacceptable.

  • tayled Dec 3, 2012

    It wpould also be a great opportunity to teach people about the role that Raleigh played at the end of the Civil War. Sherman's troops camped on this site. As a part of the trail, you could have educational stations that taught about life in Raleigh at the time, what happened there near the end of the war, and its impact on Raleigh's history in general, something that is still with us today. I urge the planners to take this into consideration.

  • mmtlash Dec 3, 2012

    "what's is a destination park? a theme park? or a just a natural park with fields and trails?" -dk12

    although it would be interesting to have a theme park or water park there I believe they are trying to make it more nature/trail oriented

  • dk12 Dec 3, 2012

    what's is a destination park?
    a theme park? or a just a natural park with fields and trails?
    a theme I would against this

    a park..with fields and trail a natural area..YES a good idea.

  • geosol Dec 3, 2012

    Let's see, you have short sighted and selfish right wing REPUBLICANS who want to kill the park because, 1) They want their fat cat developer donors to make more MONEY (to give back to them), and 2) It is supported by many Democrats, therefore they're automatically against it. Then we have the other side who sees a long term vision for ALL of the citizens and something that will help attract future investment and improve the quality of life for the average working person. No wonder the REPUBLICANS are against it!

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    mmtlash - "It's not like this is a last minute thing"

    What makes it a rush job now is an unplanned-for loss of a Democratically controlled legislature and Governorship that previously had been used to push their agenda through.

    Note that these "park supporters" initiated their groups while there was till a hospital there. Then the Democratically-controlled State Government started the procedures to get rid of the hospital. And so then the agenda was well under way.


    Republicans won control and their "friends" were no longer in power to push through their long-term plans. Now they have to hurry while Democratic Bev's still in office, or what they've been planning for several years will be derailed. At least temporarily.

    That's why their pushing to run it through at the last minute.

  • skeeter II Dec 3, 2012

    What will be the annual cost of the five or six building that DHHS will moved into? Will this cost be paid from the annual rent received from the City of Raleigh OR DID THE ANNUAL BUDGET INCREASE BY THE ANNUAL RENT/LEASE AMOUNT?

    Sounds like a GOOd DEAL for Raleigh and Wake County realtors!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I think Gov Perdue stated that this consolidating of DHHS would save big bucks -- how much would be saved by moving the rest of DHHS onto the Dix campus. Yes some more buildings would have to be build. AS A TAXPAYER AND CITIZEN OF RALEIGH, I THINK THIS LEASING WOULD BE A BAD, BAD, BAD DEAL!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • more cowbell Dec 3, 2012

    $3M won't even cover the cost of the building permit.

  • cuffusion Dec 3, 2012

    I am unsure what the States options are.. As you know the property was donated to the State.. there may well have been conditions associated with that donation which might limit the options considerably.. A park would certainly be nice...maybe with some agricultural flare which would play into the history of the state and leverage the farmers market...

  • pdbullard Dec 3, 2012

    Treat it like any other surplus property. Auction. If Raleigh has the most money fine .

  • mmtlash Dec 3, 2012

    It's not like this is a last minute thing, anyone who drives around ITB Raleigh will note there have been yard signs in folks yards supporting the proposed park idea for several years. Personally I think as Raleigh continues to grow it would be wise to preserve this space in the center of town for generations to come.

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    Pepe Silvia -"Raleigh is a rapidly growing city and green space MUST be preserved while we still can!"

    It was a green space that could be used by citizens -before- these "groups" banded together to run the mentally-ill patients out of their neighborhood.

    The cloak of "green space nobility" of these "groups" is invisible to those that have known their true agenda from it's inception.

    Their long-term agenda is nothing short of completely eliminating the type of people they consider "undesirable" from their rapidly expanding "neighborhood".

    They got rid of the mental health hospital residents, and next up are the low-income residents.

  • JoCo50 at MXR Dec 3, 2012

    There's plenty of wonderful things that could be done with property belonging to North Carolina's mental health patients.

    Maybe Randy Parton could produce some music shows there.

    Or maybe someone could come up with something like the Global Transpark to go there.

    ......or a NHL arena?

    A convention center would really put Raleigh on the map...

    The possibilities are limitless.

    Governor Perdue should be applauded for trying to ram this through in the last 3 weeks of her term. All the real good decisions in history were made hastily and without much forethought. Forward Council of State. Do it for the children.

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    3 million just for planning. Then about 3 million in taxpayer funding per year for rent and upkeep and security and the like. Then a couple million for a pedestrian bridge across Western Blvd from Boylan Heights.

    Then the multi-multi-million dollars of buyout costs to run the low-income people away from the area like they did the mentally-ill. Then the millions per year to have mental-health services spread all over instead of one spot.

    Just so a few well-connected elitists can have an "open-space" to walk their dogs.

    An extremely costly tax-payer funded entitlement for the rich politically-connected Democrats that have moved into the neighborhood area the last several years in anticipation of having it, for the most part, all to themselves.

    These "park planning" groups have had a systematic cleansing agenda for years, with the expectation that the taxpayers of North Carolina would cover the costs.

    I could see it coming years ago when the groups formed to get rid of the hospital.

  • djofraleigh Dec 3, 2012

    there are two hundred acres available in Wake for parks, and a park does not need to be downtown. Most people in Wake do not live downtown.

    There is a case for the state to give the land to NCSU for growth and agriculture teaching (which the barns were once used for) and even to state government. This would be fair to the rest of the state. What should be done with the land? It should have remained a state mental hospital, but no. What do the bankers, builders and realtors want here in Raleigh?

  • djofraleigh Dec 3, 2012

    I think a park is a grand idea. We need as much green land ... COMMENT

    it's not 'park' but DESTINATION park....a quarter of it or more will be under pavement or buildings. How best to use the land is worth figuring.

    I'm from here, so I say it is OK to cheat the rest of the state out of all the money the land is really wroth. It's state property. I want it to be NO vehicle permitted land. Yes, use the current buildings and roads for mental health, but let's not have museums over there.

  • Pepe Silvia Dec 3, 2012

    Once the open land is gone, its gone. If its sold off for office space or residential homes, it will never be reclaimed for a park. Raleigh is a rapidly growing city and green space MUST be preserved while we still can!

  • gkgreene Dec 3, 2012

    Value of property $60 to $80 million. Typical rental rate is 10% of value so rate should be closer to $6 million per year than $500k per year. Also add the cost to lease office building(s) to house the displaced workers (say at least $1 million per year).

    So is it fair to citizens in Manteo and Murphy and all in between to subsidize a park for the "Downtown Citizens of Raleigh" (say this because most outside of the beltline will not visit) at a cost of $7 million, or more, per year for 99 years.

    Isn't interesting that the "Downtown City" will lease back office space to the State.

    No probem with a park (even though others at local and state level are nearby)but it should not be the citizens of North Carolina paying for it.

  • venitapeyton Dec 3, 2012

    The same Raleigh City Council that can't agree on building a police station has the capacity to enter a 99 year lease?

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    tran - "How about reopening it as a psychiatric hospital?"

    That is EXACTLY the right thing to do. That property was given to the State for a specific purpose, for the care of the mentally-ill.

    The ONLY proper thing to do is to use it to consolidate mental health services, including a hospital, and give those patients back the one-of-a-kind special healing space that was stolen from them by a few entrenched power elite.

  • TVs_Deceit Dec 3, 2012

    Don't forget, you'll have to run the low-income people surrounding the area out, like you did the mentally-ill, before it can be a proper taxpayer-funded high-end neighborhood park.

    I'm still waiting for one good reason why it should be a bottomless money-pit for Raleigh taxpayers instead of a tax and income generating green development with homes and businesses.

    These park-only people that live in the neighborhood fail to explain how Raleigh can afford to pay for their personal special place.

    For years.. it's been the same thing that they're proposing, except the State has paid for it's upkeep. Nothing has been revitalized in the area yet, why would that change with Raleigh paying for it?

    Right now, it's a wasted space except for a privileged few in the neighborhood, and they want you and I to pay for it.

    As a green-focused mixed-use development it'll become a cash cow.

    As a neighborhood empty park, it'll stay a taxpayer fed money pit.

  • mhazouri Dec 3, 2012

    Another Raleigh Central Parking lot.

  • baldchip Dec 3, 2012

    This is a big place that needs big ideas-NOT DONE IN A HURRY-to save some politician's legacy. She has no other positive legacy-so Bevvie will push this strong. Council-use good judgement. Put a panel of leaders and citizens together to decide and report what is best for this property.

    $500K per year may be a real bargin-for aleigh. Should that number double or triple???? I wonder???

    Do not jump to conclusions.

  • Jimm57 Dec 3, 2012

    Three words: NASCAR SHORT TRACK!

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