Thursday, September 30, 2010

Two Days...

...until the 2010 Third Ward Tailgate.  See the post below for more details!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

CMS Proposal re: Irwin Avenue Elementary School (updated ~2:00p)

[Updated portion in bold italics.]
The Charlotte Observer reports that Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools has included Irwin Avenue Elementary School on its list for closure with school restructuring.  The school would be repurposed for administrative offices.
While the outcome is not yet known, acceptance of the proposal will certainly have an effect on educational options for children in Uptown neighborhoods including Third Ward.  Secondary factors such as land use and property values are also expected to be impacted.
I have contacted Charlotte Center City Partners to determine if the organization has released a statement on the CMS announcements regarding Center City schools.  Please utilize this contact address to submit your own feedback.
Irwin Avenue Elementary School is adjacent to a multiacre parcel, also owned by CMS, that was recently rezoned for the proposed Sycamore @Gateway project.  CMS had ventured to trade the land to private developers in exchange for the developers' promise to build 25,000 square feet of administrative space for CMS use.  The rezoning was successful despite its failure to meet Planning guidelines and vigorous opposition from the Third Ward Neighborhood Association, Friends of Fourth Ward, and several other community organizations.  A CMS representative stated today that the organization does not intend to move forward with the land trade.
Please stay tuned for more updates.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Third Ward Tailgate Countdown

There are just five days until the Third Ward Tailgate!  Bring your family and friends down to 600 South Cedar Street beginning at 11:00a this Saturday, October 2nd to snap photos with Sir Purr and the Top Cats, enjoy tours of Bank of America Stadium, participate in events at the practice field, and maybe even win some prizes.  Most importantly, you can spend time with your neighbors in Third Ward.
Hartigan’s Irish Pub will open its doors for the event with a full menu and slate of college football games.  Key Saturday matchups include:
  • Ohio State vs. Illinois,
  • Clemson vs. Miami,
  • Florida State vs. Virginia,
  • North Carolina vs. East Carolina,
  • Tennessee vs. LSU, and
  • Texas vs. Oklahoma in the Red River Shootout
Don’t forget that the Tailgate directly follows the Komen Race for the Cure, and runs concurrently with the Grand Opening of the new Mint Museum.  Join us at the Tailgate and in welcoming thousands of visitors to Third Ward!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Judicial Candidates Forum

"Justice Initiatives, Inc. is proud to sponsor a judicial candidates’ forum for all the individuals vying for seats on the District Court Bench and Superior Court Bench in Mecklenburg County. The forum will be held on Thursday, October 21, 2010 at the Charlotte School of Law from 6:00 pm to 7:30pm. The moderator for the event is Taylor Batten with the Charlotte Observer. Members of the audience will also be presented with an opportunity to pose questions to the twelve candidates.  Candidates will NOT be able to respond to any questions regarding how they might rule in either pending or future cases. Seating is limited."
For more information, see this flyer.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Fighter Jet Photos

A slideshow of photos from yesterday's fighter flyover can be found here.

Friday, September 17, 2010

F-16 Flyover

The Panthers' home opener will once again feature a flyover by F-16 fighter jets in an east-to-west route.  The flyover will occur at approximately 1:00p this Sunday, i.e. at gametime.  Please do not be alarmed.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

2010 Quality of Life Report

The City of Charlotte's 2010 Quality of Life Report was released yesterday.  Third Ward's metrics - which consider the area shown in the below map - have once again reflected a "Stable, Trending Up" quality of life:
"[Stable NSAs] exhibit few neighborhood level problems. These are neighborhoods that score high on the social, physical, crime, and economic dimensions. Compared to other NSAs, the Stable grouping has a significant higher quality of life than the city average conditions."
Since the 2008 report, Third Ward's population has increased to 2,856, with a decrease in the youth population and increase in persons over 64.  Housing units have increased to 1,343, and average house value has increased to $313,704 (versus a city average of $228,128).
Fully 100% of Third Ward residents have access to public transportation.  Though slight increases were recorded in the Crime measurements, Third Ward had the lowest rates of crime compared to other Uptown neighborhoods - in every category.
Read the full report, including definitions, here.  Thanks to Keith Hall for sharing the link!

"Water-Sewer Rate Study Seeks Citizen Input"

"Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities customers are urged to attend upcoming information and public input sessions related to the first comprehensive review of water/sewer rates and fees since 1977.

'We’re taking a fresh look at rates and fees charged for the essential water and sewer services we deliver, to see if there are better alternatives,' said Barry Gullet, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities Director. 'We need to hear from customers.'

As a public service, Gullet emphasized the utility’s goal is 'to recommend a rate structure that is considered fair and equitable, while generating the revenues required to operate the water and sewer system.'

Two sets of five public meetings are scheduled across Mecklenburg County. The first series, which starts next week, will include presenting information and gathering input related to the existing water and sewer rate structure. The second series begins in late October/early November and will introduce potential rate & fee alternatives for public feedback.

WEST MEETINGS - September 14 and October 26. Both meetings begin at 6 p.m. and will be held at Clanton Pavilion in Clanton Park, 3132 Manchester Ave.
CENTRAL MEETINGS - September 15 at Noon, and October 27 at 6 p.m.  Both meetings will be held in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center (1st floor Meeting Chambers), 600 East 4th Street. These meetings will be shown on the GOVChannel (Time-Warner Cable channel 16) and streamed from www.charmeck.org &  www.cmutilities.com. An online rate study comment form is available.
NORTH MEETINGS - September 15 and October 28. Both meetings begin at 6 p.m. and will be held at Lee S. Dukes Water Treatment Plant, 7980 Babe Stillwell Road, in Huntersville.
SOUTH MEETINGS - September 16 and November 3. Both meetings begin at 6 p.m. and will be held in the South County Regional Library, 5801 Rea Road.
EAST MEETINGS - September 21 and November 4. Both meetings start at 6 p.m. and will be held at Hickory Grove United Methodist Church, 6401 Hickory Grove Road.

Fifteen community volunteers are serving on a Water/Sewer Rate Study Stakeholders Advisory Group that will act as a sounding board during this process. Red Oak Consulting, a division of Malcolm Pirnie, Inc., is the rate expert working with Utilities staff. A rate structure recommendation will be shared with the Utilities Advisory Group, the City Council Restructuring Government Committee and presented to City Council for consideration in February 2011. Visit www.cmutilities.com for rate study details and updates."                

Monday, September 13, 2010

Uptown Farmers Market

Tonight the City Council will discuss a consultant's study recommending a home for a permanent, full-time Uptown Farmer's Market.  The list of recommended sites includes a Third Ward location, adjacent to the proposed future Knights Stadium.  See this Charlotte Business Journal post for more information, and stay tuned for updates.

Friday, September 10, 2010

9/11 Memorial Services

The Our Children's Memorial will host its sixth annual 9/11 memorial service tomorrow, Saturday, September 11th, at 8:30a: "It will be a time of special remembrance of those who died at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and in the four airplanes brought down that day. An Honor Guard from the Charlotte Fire Dept will open the service, followed by a prayer, releasing of balloons with 9/11 tags, and the Pledge of Allegiance. The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department will provide a bugler for taps. There will be time for anyone who would like to say a few words to do it."
On Monday, Gateway Village will also host a brief service in the Promenade, at 9:30a.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

CMPD Update

This month's CMPD update can be found here (note that several repeat offenders of various property crimes have been taken into custody).  As previously noted there has been a recent spike in Larcenies from Auto in Charlotte; please take the appropriate precautions.  Stay tuned for further updates.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Avon Walk for Breast Cancer 2010

Once again Third Ward welcomes the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer!  The event is a marathon and a half (39.3 miles) walk on October 24th and October 25th throughout the Charlotte area.
"The funds raised will go to the Avon Foundation's Breast Cancer Crusade. The Crusade’s primary focus is assisting the medically underserved population, including minorities, the poor, the elderly, and the under- and uninsured, with a mission to fund access to care and finding a cure for breast cancer. For more information on the Avon Foundation and the Breast Cancer Crusade, please visit www.avonfoundation.org."
Frazier Park will host the opening and closing ceremonies on Saturday and Sunday, October 23rd-24th, 2010 (the soccer field will be closed to visitors).  Walkers will begin and end their journey at the park, concluding on the 24th between 1:00-3:30pm.  Please expect elevated noise and traffic throughout the weekend.  Contact info.charlotte@avonwalk.org with questions or concerns, and please look out for visitors in need of directions or help.  Thanks!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Upcoming Streetcar Meetings

See this flyer for upcoming meetings on the Streetcar project, including information on:

  • Technology findings
  • Defined alignment, shelter design and stop locations
  • Capital cost estimate
  • Next steps
  • Streetcar Starter Project (1.5 mile segment)

Friday, September 3, 2010

Knights Stadium Site Cleanup

Charlotte Knights' staff will be on site at the Virginia Paper Mill building on Wednesday, September 8th.  The building occupies the planned site for their future stadium, and is due for cleanup.  We thank the Knights for their efforts to improve the area; if you would like to volunteer to help, contact me.
Have a great Labor Day weekend!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Jazz at the Bechtler

"The summer is almost over but jazz music at the Bechtler is not. Requests for more jazz and strong attendance at each Cool Summer of Hot Jazz concert led to an extension of the museum’s jazz programming. The series will continue on the first Friday of the month from 6 to 8 p.m. in the museum lobby [beginning tomorrow, September 3rd]. The concerts are free with museum admission."

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Compact Fluorescent Lighting

Duke Energy has a new program to promote energy savings through the use of compact fluorescent lighting.  Call (800) 943-7585 to receive up to fifteen light bulbs - free - for your home.  You must provide your account number, and delivery takes 4-6 weeks.