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Citizens Group Unveils Plans For North Wake Landfill

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Stretching out over 250 acres, the North Wake Landfill is surrounded by homes. Despite the dump, the area has been popular because of its location and convenience to Interstate 540.

On rare occasions, resident George Ziperski says the odor from the dump is so bad, it makes his eyes hurt.

"They actually burn," he says. "At least mine do."

Ziperski can see the landfill through the trees from his Falls River yard in the summer. When the leaves are off the trees in the winter, he has a clear view of the landfill.

Still, he loves his neighborhood and hopes that the stigma some people have about the Durant Road area will be erased when the landfill closes in 2007.

With new plans presented Tuesday evening by the North Wake Landfill Citizen's Committee, many people think the area will become even more popular.

For more than a year, the citizen's committee has studied what to do with the site when the dump closes in 2007. The suggestions include a dog park, biking trails, wildlife sanctuary, skating park and athletic fields.

"We wanted to be connected to the neighborhoods and provide resources for the neighborhoods, as well as the community as a whole," said Beau Mills, who heads the committee.

Right now, many people consider the dump an eyesore.

"I have seen some resistance," said Raleigh realtor Phyllis Wolborsky. Despite the hesitancy, she has had a lot of success selling in the areas around the landfill.

Wolborsky says people moved into the area anyway because of the amenities and affordable price. She says they may now find themselves in a place that will become even more desirable.

"For those people who did take the chance and got over it, I do see great appreciation for them," Wolborsky said.

The county will now work up how much the proposed plan may cost. The committee is exploring options such as using part of the landfill-tipping fee to fund the improvements.

County commissioners are expected to make a decision by the end of the year. Some other ideas they may consider include using some of the land for a school, as well as an indoor pool.


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