Jul 9, 2009

Rhino Times Has An Epiphany on Protest Petitions in Greensboro

The Rhino Times has a new article out this week by John Hammer called "City Staff Wants To Control Your Home", click on the link above. John Hammer writes this,"The City of Greensboro now has a program called the neighborhood conservation overlay (NCO) district, designed to force an eclectic, older neighborhood – like what they are calling "Greater Kirkwood" – into the mold of a new, cookie-cutter housing development with a homeowners' association".

Let's do a little history lesson on Rhino Times and Protest Petition for Greensboro, here is a post back on May 3, 2008 when the state legislator of this state were getting ready to go back into short session here is that post CLICKHERE and here is a quote from the first paragraph,"The reason I post this e mail is because I have e mailed the Rhino Times 3 times with no correspondence , while I also went to their web site and did a letter to the editor about Protest Petitions to no avail. Maybe this might help with a correspondence."

Then finally on July 17, 2008 after the short session of the state legislature was over and plenty of anonymous letters to the editors in between this time at the Rhino they finally printed the letter to the editor about restoring Protest Petitions to Greensboro. It was amazing to have to fight so hard to get a letter to the editor printed in the Rhino but when your whole middle section of the Rhino is real estate industry or TREBIC CARTEL as they have been nicknamed as a parody to their fight to deny the citizens of Greensboro the right to Protest Petitions.Then we see in this new article that John Hammer had a epiphany for the use of Protest Petitions in Greensboro because in the past John Hammer never wanted to talk about this issue that was resonating all over the City of Greensboro.

The Rhino Times article talks about the Kirkwood area of Greensboro which is off of lawndale and cornwallis drive near battleground avenue.John Hammer talks in length about the neighborhood conservation overlay but at the end of the article he had this to say.

"One final note, the push for an NCO in Greater Kirkwood seems to be a result of a failed plan to build a Walgreens at the intersection of Cornwallis and Lawndale drives. Since that attempt was made, the city has passed a protest petition amendment that gives neighborhoods much more power in controlling development.

The protest petition was passed by the North Carolina General Assembly, and went into effect in Greensboro, this year. It gives nearby property owners a tremendous amount of power to have a voice in rezoning requests. If a protest petition is signed by 20 percent of the property owners affected by a rezoning, or 5 percent of the property owners within 100 feet of the boundaries of the property in question, the rezoning comes to the City Council. Then the rezoning has to pass by a 7-to-2 majority. Passing a contested rezoning by a 7-to-2 majority on the City Council is extremely rare, which means the developer is going to make every attempt to get the support of the neighborhood before moving forward.

The way to keep unwanted development from Lawndale and Cornwallis is with protest petitions, not by putting another layer of regulations on the neighborhood."

It is nice to see John Hammer come around on this issue because it was very hard at the beginning to convince the good professor in David Wharton from a blog called A Little Urbanity CLICKHERE on this issue but he was a great advocate at the end and now John Hammer can see the light as well in Protest Petitions for Greensboro

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diane davis said...

Protest Petitions, Historic Districts, Conservation Districts, Zoning, etc., are all about who controls a city - the people who own small pieces of property and want to protect their investment and control what happens in their neighborhood vs. the rapers of the city who only care about making money and what they choose to call economic development.
The lies and half-truths that are told and repeated during these "discussions" are amazing.

triadwatch said...

that is why i have seen way too many zoning cases where just having the ability to use the protest petition would have been a great tool in the zoning process in greensboro and to know that greensboro was the only city exempted was a total injustice to the citizens of greensboro. Protest petitions will help and make for a better community and neighborhood.

It was a blessing to have all the opposition from the TREBIC CARTEL because it made for more people hearing about this issue and understanding the zoning process and how protest petition works.

Enjoy your blog as well.

diane davis said...

I forgot to mention Design Overlays in the list of questionable city actions.

triadwatch said...

some neighborhoods welcomed the nco like the neighborhood of westridge road where they went through a long process to have one.

It should be a decision for the whole neighborhood.

I know the design overlay of downtown was a huge issue this past month and in future but when a major developer wants to fly the mayor and county chairman up to D.C. and have unfettered access to them with this issue still out there, that doesn't sit well with me on the ethical aspects of this issue.

Anonymous said...

:) I noticed that too. BB

triadwatch said...

if i see john hammer out and will let him know about this epiphany. Haven't had much to talk about on the petition front and this was a good one to talk about in the rhino times

Anonymous said...

nice post and thanks for sharing...
Entertainment at one stop

triadwatch said...


Anonymous said...

"One final note, the push for an NCO in Greater Kirkwood seems to be a result of a failed plan to build a Walgreens at the intersection of Cornwallis and Lawndale drives. Since that attempt was made, the city has passed a protest petition amendment that gives neighborhoods much more power in controlling development"

At first, I was going, "Dude, that's my area." Then: "Dude, that's my house!"
The story is that some company or other kept offering our family a substantial amount of money in order to buy the house three generations spent their lives in, and build a pretty shopping center on it. Because everyone knows Greensboro has not got enough shopping centers in it. I didn't realize we'd gotten in the papers :D