Washington Park Neighborhood Association 

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  • 02 May 2017 4:55 PM | Anonymous

    On Tuesday, April 11, nearly 25 Washington Park neighbors gathered in the Multipurpose Room at the Central Y to hear from state and city officials about the upcoming plans for construction on Business-40 in a meeting organized by WPNA.


    Wright Archer, NCDOT District Engineer and Pat Ivey, NCDOT Division Engineer were present, as well as Karen Simon, President of Simon Resources, and Amy Hubbard, Senior Planner, Simon Resources (simonresourcesinc.com), consultants to NC Department of Transportation. They presented the latest information about the project and fielded questions regarding construction plans and traffic diversions planned during the project. City of Winston-Salem Deputy Director Connie James also attended the meeting.


    How will construction affect traffic?

    Ten years in the making, the project includes rebuilding the 1.2-mile segment of Bus-40 through downtown Winston-Salem from U.S. 52 to Fourth Street. The upfit includes nine vehicular bridges, two pedestrian bridges, and portions of a multi-use path from Lockland Ave. to Liberty St. Karen Simon led off with an overview of the presentation that included information about the design-build team hired to construct Business-40; its construction schedule and timeline; adjacent improvements and bridge designs; and traffic management and changes during the construction. Pat Ivey followed with detailed descriptions of construction and anticipated dates. 


    During the project, Bus-40 will be closed in the downtown area. A significant challenge to this project was allowing for traffic access into and out of downtown during construction. Although there will be road closures, the project has been divided into four different segments with staggered schedules to allow local traffic to flow as smoothly as possible around construction. NCDOT and city planners want to make sure that through-traffic uses I-40 (on the south side of town) rather than clog up local and visitor traffic flowing into – and out of – downtown. Construction on the first segment – which includes intersection and overpass at Peter’s Creek Parkway – will begin this Fall. The last segment of the project is anticipated to wrap up in Fall 2019.


    How can you prepare?

    In order to prevent frustration and surprises, officials recommend that local residents who currently use Bus-40 to shuttle themselves around town take time now to explore alternate routes to get around. If you currently use Bus-40 to get around town, examine the project map and start planning alternate travel routes before construction begins. 


    Find out more

    You can find current info, timelines, project descriptions, suggestions for traveling in the area, and illustrations of the new bridges, roadways and walkways at the official project website, www.business40nc.com. Follow news on Twitter @NCDOT_Triad  #Biz40NC. Email questions to business40@business40nc.com. Or write to Business 40 Project, NCDOT-Division 9, 375 Silas Creek Pkwy., Winston-Salem, NC 27127.

  • 05 Jan 2017 4:15 PM | Anonymous

    If you have not taken a drive through Washington Park the lights are still shining brightly. What a terrific turn out this year for Shine a Light on Hunger. Thank you to everyone who participated by hanging lights, donating food, volunteering and otherwise bringing energy to the event. We raised over 1400 pounds of food and an extra $900 all for Sunnyside Ministry. That is enough food to feed about 300 people!

       The carriage rides were fun and it helped having the Winston Salem Police manage the Broad Street crossing. It felt much safer and allowed us to keep the rides going smoothly. In spite of the bitter cold about 90 people huddled under blankets and enjoyed the experience. A lot of neighbors just dropped off food and did not linger.  But everyone loved the lights! 

       I talked to one Washington Park neighbor who has volunteered at Sunnyside for years and asked about her experiences there. Sunnyside is located adjacent to UNCSA campus and serves a diverse population which includes families with children and lots of elderly. Many ride the bus there or walk in. Each one has a story of hardship and usually has been referred to Sunnyside from a church. Medical bills, families taking in relatives and job challenges are all part of the story. Each client is just struggling to get by. Sunnyside provides a positive atmosphere where they can get food once a month or financial aid twice a year. The volunteer said she is most impressed by how appreciative the clients are to have a little help. Sunnyside also added a successful new course “Gaining Control” to help clients improve financial responsibility and reduce the need to return. Clothing and blankets are always available.    

       Thank you Washington Park neighborhood. We make the world a better place when we care about each other. Lights, canned goods, action...each one of you made it happen! 

       Best wishes for 2017! Keep your light shining.  

       – Kathy Cooper

  • 08 Nov 2016 8:53 PM | Anonymous

    On Tuesday, October 18, more than 20 Washington Park neighbors gathered at the Central Y to hear a presentation on zoning and development by Kirk Ericson, Principal Planner for the City of Winston-Salem addressing the questions: What is zoning? What is the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO)? What is a National Historic District? How do zoning designations, historic designations, and the UDO affect what home owners can do with their homes and properties in Washington Park? How is the UDO enforced? 

      Mr. Ericson delivered a clear and informative talk about zoning in the city in general and in Washington Park in particular. He described zoning as the set of guidelines and regulations that implement the long-range planning recommendations of the area plans developed and revised to translate the Legacy 2030 plans for each neighborhood. The South Central Area Plan is the set of recommendations that includes Washington Park and it sets ideals for  future land use, transportation and community facilities and environmental and economic development. Since the recommendations are not binding, staying in touch with council members to make sure voices in our neighborhood are heard is of prime interest to WPNA. 

       Mr. Ericson talked about the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) – the set of regulations that manage zoning regulations, land subdivision regulations, environmental regulations and historic preservation regulations. He discussed different historic neighborhood designations and the interaction of zoning regulations and historic designations. He also talked in detail about the zoning process, i.e., the process by which zoning is applied to areas of the city. 

       You can see a pdf of Kirk Ericson's presentation here.


  • 14 Dec 2015 6:00 PM | Anonymous

    Thank you to everyone who came out and participated in Shine A Light. We had a wildly successful first-time event. At least 110 rode the carriage ride and another 100 or more just stopped by for the fun. We collected 1733 items of food and another $671 in checks or cash all for Sunnyside Ministry. A significant food contribution came from a birthday party that requested canned goods instead of gifts — what a great idea for anyone having a holiday gathering! (If you need someone to pick up additional donations just let us know.) The night was perfect weather, the lights were amazing and everyone had a good time. It was a great way to kick off the holidays and make a difference. This note from David Holston, Sunnyside Ministry, says it all.


    To Washington Park: 

     

    On behalf of Sunnyside Ministry a big THANK YOU!!! This was an amazing event and we are honored that so many people participated and donated from the heart at this time of year. As I am writing this I can hear our three college interns unloading all of the food from the truck. 

         When I arrived this morning and showed the staff how well the Shine A Light on Hunger event went they were overwhelmed. The amount of food that you and your neighbors collected is like what we see with well-established food drives.

         One of the things that I believe and I have told others is that when we start to care for our neighbors in very direct ways we will see the issues of poverty begin to disappear. I think that the name you gave this event — Shine a Light on Hunger — did that and the food will travel really no more than a mile or two from the neighborhood in which it was given. 

          I enjoyed meeting many of you and would invite you to come by and visit with us anytime. We would enjoy giving you a tour of our ministry. I hope Shine a Light will become an annual event and that you will continue to include Sunnyside in this effort.

          Again, THANK YOU and may the light that shines on hunger in our community also light your way and warm your heart both in this season of light and throughout the year.

     

    Blessings,

    David Holston, Sunnyside Ministry



  • 12 Dec 2015 1:05 PM | Anonymous

    The Family Dollar building construction at Acadia Ave. and Broad St. has begun in full force, and neighbors have been asking about the new building and its appearance. The building will be finished in brick, not the structural corrugated steel that is visible. You can check out a pdf of the final plans that have been approved by the City of Winston-Salem here. It lists the different finish materials that will be used and provides additional notes about signage, lighting fixtures and other details of the building. While WPNA’s design recommendations to Family Dollar last April — e.g., the use of brick on the exterior, changes to the exterior signage and lighting — resulted in changes to the initial plans, only the City has the authority to approve the final plans (based on zoning and building regulations).


    WPNA continues to maintain contact with Family Dollar management and the City-County Planning Department as the building takes shape. The store is expected to open in February, 2016.

  • 21 Apr 2015 4:40 PM | Anonymous

    On Friday, April 10, a delegation of WPNA board members and neighbors met with representatives from Family Dollar and RED Partners to discuss building plans for the Family Dollar store at the corner of Broad St. and Acadia Ave. We discussed the proposed building, stated our objections to its design and site details, made recommendations on important issues, and made plans to review another round of alterations.

    Getting Ready for the Meeting

    In preparation for the meeting, WPNA contacted three architects (David Gall, Keith Wilson and Sterling Bollinger) to look at the first round of plans and elevations that were submitted to the City. All three made astute observations about conforming to regulations; screening of utility areas; facade design and materials; building and business signage and lighting; landscaping and buffer zones with adjoining properties; and site design to create pedestrian-friendly and community-friendly areas in and around the building.

    We also dug into the archives to retrieve WPNA design guidelines that had been created and documented in 1988. The study, Washington Park Development Guide, was very thorough in its examination of existing conditions (land use, housing, public areas and facilities, and transportation and transit issues); identifying issues of development that affected the neighborhood; and listing future goals, plans, and recommendations for the neighborhood.

    Guidelines Set

    We incorporated the architects’ comments and recommendations with the historical guidelines in a new document, the WP Development Guidelines (9MB pdf). These guidelines detail our priorities to further improve the commercial area and maintain pedestrian/community areas and define and describe examples of building design styles that fit our historic commercial buildings. C. L. Helt (Charlotte, NC), the architect company that RED and Family Dollar have hired to work on the WP building, has created Family Dollar stores that are in keeping with historic areas, and we included examples of their work in the document.

    Meeting Details

    Family Dollar and RED Partner reps were impressed with the features and suggestions that we outlined in the WP Development Guidelines document and were very appreciative to have them. We spent our meeting reviewing the recommendations and guidelines in detail. Our WP delegation made the point that Family Dollar has the opportunity with this store to create a functional space that could not only enhance the business district of WP, but also set a new corporate standard for working with an historic neighborhood association to improve the image of FD in Winston-Salem and beyond.

    Family Dollar and RED Partners let us know that they would take our development guidelines back and reconnoiter with the corporate office to see what changes would be feasible. WPNA made sure that Family Dollar will be in touch with updated plans before final decisions are made on the new construction. Since our meeting, they have indicated that they will contact us at the end of April or beginning of May with changes to the building plan

    Construction/demolition is expected to begin in June after the necessary permits are approved and in place.

  • 20 Jan 2015 7:43 PM | Anonymous

    A delegation of WPNA members and Washington Park residents met last Thursday, January 15, with representatives from Family Dollar and RED Partners, the development group managing the design and construction of a Family Dollar store in Washington Park. The new building is planned to go on the site of the old George K. Walker Florist shop at the corner of Broad St. and Acadia Ave. You can read a complete summary of the meeting and its findings here.

  • 18 Jan 2015 5:36 PM | Anonymous

    About 50 residents of Washington Park — including current board members and six past presidents — gathered at the Central Y on Tuesday, January 6, to voice opinions and concerns about the Family Dollar store that has been proposed to open later this year at the old George K. Walker Florist site on the corner of Broad and Acadia. Leslie Wakeford, current WPNA president, led the meeting to discuss actions that WPNA has taken so far, field questions, discuss ideas and past experiences, and discuss future actions and options.
       Discussions covered many topics, including whether WPNA represents all areas and residents of the neighborhood; the pros and cons of having a Family Dollar store in the business district; zoning regulations, special site regulations, area planning recommendations and alternate zoning considerations that might affect the proposed store; issues and concerns about parking, traffic and crime; and whether Family Dollar had released any details about their plans.
       With many of the attendees in opposition to the opening of the store, there was discussion of creating yard signs voicing that opposition; the pros and cons of polling the whole neighborhood; and seeking additional support from the adjacent neighborhoods of Sunnyside and West Salem.

       You can read a more detailed account of the meeting here.
       WPNA arranged a meeting with representatives from Family Dollar and RED Partners (the group hired by Family Dollar to develop the site) to find out more information about their efforts and to present neighborhood objections and concerns. Details of that meeting will help direct future actions by WPNA.

  • 22 Dec 2014 10:29 AM | Anonymous

    WPNA and Washington Park residents are gathering forces to fight Family Dollar as it seeks to open a store at the corner of Acadia Ave. and Broad St. (the old George K. Walker Florist site). Please sign and share this petition on Change.org to keep Family Dollar out of Washington Park!

  • 19 Dec 2014 1:05 PM | Anonymous

    A couple of weeks ago, WPNA learned that Family Dollar is considering opening a store at the corner of Acadia Avenue and Broad Street. Board members and many residents of the neighborhood have objections to a national chain store moving into our neighborhood business district. The board drafted a letter stating our objections and has sent this letter to Family Dollar and to our city representatives to make our views known. 


    In the letter, WPNA states three objections:


    1) Business Model and Stewardship Are Incompatible with Neighborhood Business Corridor
    The proposed location for Family Dollar is in a neighborhood business corridor that serves its residents with neighborhood-owned and -operated businesses, including a grocery store, a diner, a pub, a barbershop, cleaners, and auto mechanics. Family Dollar is a national chain. We do not want a business that is not born of — nor invested in — our neighborhood and community. 
         The developing business area at the corner of Broad and Acadia Streets is growing in accordance with the historic character of the neighborhood. The site for the proposed Family Dollar falls within the boundaries of the Historic District. We do not want the big box / strip mall style of Family Dollar stores in our historic residential neighborhood. 

    2) Additional Vehicular Traffic
    Washington Park is a walking residential neighborhood with many young families. We have recently installed crosswalks at the intersections at Acadia, Broad, and Main Streets. We have installed new bike lanes. We are pursuing traffic calming measures throughout the neighborhood. We do not want the additional vehicular traffic created by a Family Dollar store.

    3) Safety and Security
    We believe that Family Dollar will bring an increase in crime; and a decrease in safety and security to our neighborhood.

    We will keep you updated on further developments.




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