Monday, January 28, 2008

Creekside Elementary - Redistricting Information

Received in an email to the board:

It is my unfortunate duty to inform you, the rumors are now reality and redistricting is openly being discussed and possibly even expected. There are two very important meetings coming up in the next two weeks. The first will take place at the Fuller Administration building on Thursday, January 31st at 6:30PM and this is an open meeting. The only agenda item is the growth and redistricting of Creekside and I urge you to attend this meeting if at all possible. On this night we will hear what Dr. Harris and his staff propose for the future of Creekside. We believe that there will be multiple options proposed and discussion by the Board will be held.

A week following, on Thursday, February 7th, there will be a Public Comment Session at 6:30PM at Creekside. Again, please make plans to attend as this will be an opportunity for parents and staff to talk about their feelings and thoughts on at least one of the proposals. It is extremelyimportant for all parents to support Creekside, this includes rising Kindergarteners. Creekside is a great school, in part, due to the active participation of many dedicated families. Removing any part of the Creekside family dilutes what we have been able to accomplish through the many challenges we have already faced. Removing any part of Creekside only sends those children into other already overcrowded schools.

I have attached my public comments for your review. There will be articles in the Durham Herald Sun and the N&O in the morning. The blog from tonight's meeting by the N&O is already up at I hope to have a blog up shortly at and then President's Blog. Please stay tuned, get active and help save ourschool because our children need you. You can start by passing this on to others who may be interested but not on the email list.

From a separate email to the board:

This article may be of interest to the community:

It reports on a proposal to redraw the Creekside Elementary school district. It would be nice to post this kind of information either on the blog or on the CR website.

"School officials will present the school board with proposals to solve the overcrowding at a meeting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday. A public hearing will be held at Creekside at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 7."

Friday, January 11, 2008

Some Notes Regarding Proposed Development

These notes were provided by George Brine who is on the planning commission:


Please feel free to share these notes with anyone you think would be interested. I know that some of you have a much bigger contact list than I do.

I looked at my copy of the Comprehensive Plan when I got home last night. Looking at map 4.2 (Tiers), it appears that the Urban Growth Boundary (which is at the Durham/Chatham county line east of NC 751 where Jordan at Southpoint is proposed) takes a turn north at NC 751. It appears that it then turns west at Stagecoach Road (although the smallness of the map makes it hard to see), crosses New Hope Creek and the ACE lands, then jogs south almost to the Chatham County line before turning north when it encounters another piece of the Jordan watershed. The area south of the Urban Growth Boundary is in the Rural Tier. If I have the Stagecoach Road boundary right, then any part of the site that is south of Stagecoach Road and west of NC 751 is out of the Urban Growth Boundary and in the Rural Tier. Thus, Mr. Byker may have partially misspoken last night when he said that the site was in the Urban Growth area.

A further bit of information is found in the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO), paragraph 4.4.5 (that describes the mixed use [MU] zoning district). The last sentence reads as follows: "The MU District is used to implement the Comprehensive Plan within those areas shown as the Suburban, Urban, Compact Neighborhood or Downtown Tiers". Note that the Rural Tier is not included.

On my next trip to the Planning Department, I will double check where the Urban Growth Boundary is for sure, because it could have a huge bearing on this proposal.

A note about Traffic Impact Analysis (TIA). One is required for the proposed rezoning. TIAs are reviewed by the City of Durham transportation staff and by NC DOT. The latter review takes time. I talked to a representative of the John R. McAdams Co on January 8, and he told me that they are estimating 12 month delays for NC DOT review of TIAs. Since these reviews can also lead to more required improvements than the applicant is expecting, they could cause even further delays while the applicant decides what to do. Both the City and NC DOT have some leverage (City - utilities; NC DOT - driveway permits) in getting improvements. Thus, the estimate that the rezoning case probably will not go forward for at least 8 months is reasonable and maybe optimistic.

Rezoning requests that are not in compliance with the Comprehensive Plan cannot be approved. Basically, this means that the proposed rezoning must be consistent with the Future Land Use Map (FLUM) shown in the Comprehensive Plan. The proposed rezoning in this case is not consistent. Thus, the applicant must file a Plan Amendment Case to change the FLUM. That is why there are two cases (plan amendment and rezoning) associated with this request.

The UDO requires that staff bring cases forward when they are ready. However, the UDO also gives applicants the option to have a plan amendment case held until the rezoning case is ready. (Plan amendment cases are typically ready to go long before rezoning cases when a TIA is involved.) Hearing a plan amendment case and a rezoning case concurrently has some advantages because most folks who come to the public hearing have concerns about traffic, buffers, density, environment, school impact, etc. which are fine to address at the rezoning level but are more difficult to assess at the plan amendment level. However, applicants often opt to go forward with a plan amendment case in advance of a rezoning case because it can give them a "read" on how the public feels about the proposal. If the plan amendment case is denied by the Governing Body (in this case, the BOCC), the rezoning case goes away.

I do not know what the applicant will decide to do in this case. However, it is important to be aware that the plan amendment case here could go forward months before the rezoning case. (I'll certainly let you know when it hits the planning commission agenda.)

If the applicant plans to file the cases next week, it means that he has a Development Plan pretty much in hand because he must file it with the rezoning request. (Given that, why did he not want to show it last night?) Once the cases are filed, they are a matter of public record and you can probably get a copy (which you'll have to pay for) from the Planning Department. Please be aware that Development Plans at this point in time have not been reviewed by staff and typically undergo some modification while going through the process.

Sorry to be long winded about this, but I felt that a few comments on procedural matters might be helpful. I'll be happy to try to answer questions that folks may have.


Monday, January 7, 2008

New Planned development on Hwy 751

There is a new planned development proposal for the land across from Chancellor's Ridge on Highway 751. The development will occupy space just south of the 751 entrance to Chancellor's Ridge and continue south across the existing entrance of Colvard Farms. This puts the development directly across from the Woodlands town homes.

A meeting will be held at the Chancellor's Ridge Clubhouse (909 Chancellor's Ridge Drive) this Thursday, Jan. 10 at 7:00PM. The meeting is being held by Boylan Development Company to discuss their project, it's impact on the area and the benefits of this new development.

The development will consists of approximately 1,200 residential homes (mostly town homes, condominiums and apartments with some single family residence units) and 500,000 square feet of office and retail space. The planned architecture includes live-above work spaces - the developer has described the plan as looking similar to Meadowmont in Chapel Hill - only a lot nicer. Retail plans include bringing an upscale grocer like Harris Teeter or Trader Joes.

The developer is also donating land to build an elementary school and a fire/EMS station. Additionally, they are in talks with the YMCA to have a 60,000 square foot YMCA facility. The development comprises 164 acres with approximately 60 acres devoted to open spaces including parks, amphitheatre and walking trails.

If you are interested to learn more please plan to attend. Space will be limited so please do not bring children.

P.S. If you received the letter from Kennedy Covington about this meeting they listed an incorrect address for the clubhouse - please note the correct address for the clubhouse above.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

New Management Company starts...

Welcome to 2008 - Happy New Year!

As the new year starts so do some additional changes at Chancellor's Ridge. The biggest change is that our new management company CAS starts service. Contact information for CAS is listed below in case you need them for anything.

With this change we do expect there will be some hiccups but we will be working closely with CAS to keep the hiccups to a minimum.

What this change does not mean:

There are no rule changes to the CC&Rs or the ACC Guidelines.

There is no change in the amount of assessments or when they are due from 2007.

You may still receive letters or notices of violations to the CC&Rs or ACC guidelines. These letters still have the requirement of containing language that tells what the legal ramifications are (this is what most residents find as making a nasty letter - it is not a nasty letter it is a legal requirement).

There will be no decrease in the level of service we receive from our management company. If you feel that there is a problem with CAS then please notify your board of directors at:

CAS contact info:

Property Manger: Allan Schwartz
Contact Phone: 919-403-1400 x 1205
Contact email:

Accounting questions: 877-420-9320 x 2

Pay assessments online via credit card at:

CAS, Inc.
5915 Farrington Road
Chapel Hill, NC 27515-9900

Again - Happy New Year!

Shane Kirk
President, CR HOA