Local News

Opposition Makes Durham County Rethink Rezoning

Posted January 25, 2007 6:39 p.m. EST

— A proposal to allow industrial development in eastern Durham County is under review after neighbors presented a research-filled, organized opposition.

Durham County commissioners were considering rezoning a neighborhood from low-density to industrial, but when nearby residents learned of the proposal, the used the Internet to fight back.

"There's something special here worth protecting. Our neighborhood enjoys a certain way of life here -- it's beautiful," resident LeDawnna Summers said.

Summers researched the land around her neighborhood and created a PowerPoint presentation that highlighted wetlands in the area and noted that the neighborhood is near the Falls Lake watershed.

She then mass mailed the information to other residents and county officials.

"We reached out to a lot of commissioners and to the City Council," Summers said.

"I've gotten e-mails and phone calls," said Ellen Reckhow, chairwoman of the county Board of Commissioners.

Reckhow asked the county manager to look into the issue. They might consider tabling the rezoning at their next work sesion, she said.

"I'd prefer to not prolong the period of anxiety for neighbors, and we'll see if we can pull the plug on this sooner rather than later," she said.

Regardless of the commissioners' decision, Summers said she and her neighbors will take all necessary steps to preserve their neighborhood.

"It does make us feel hopeful, but at the same time, if all they do is pull the plug on it, what will come next?" she said.