Business & Economy

Traffic
7:43 am
Tue December 3, 2013

Raleigh City Council Suggests Tolls To Pay For I-540 Expansion

Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane worries growing traffic congestion on roadways in the Triangle will hurt the area's economic growth.
Credit epSos via Flickr, Creative Commons

Increasingly congested roadways are worrying officials in Raleigh.

The City Council has submitted a "wish list" of road improvement projects to the North Carolina Department of Transportation. It includes a proposal to add lanes to I-540 on the north side of the city.

The council doesn't expect the state to fund the project, so it suggested paying for the 108 million-dollar expansion by setting up tolls on the roadway.

Councilwoman Mary-Ann Baldwin says she knows tolls would not be popular, but she thinks breaking up traffic jams would be.

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Business & Economy
9:08 am
Fri November 29, 2013

Raleigh Is Phasing Out Its Toilet Rebate Program

Credit Salim Virji / Flickr Creative Commons

Raleigh residents have until January first to take advantage of the city's toilet upgrade reimbursement.

Raleigh has been giving out $100 rebates for efficient toilets since 2009. It was part of an effort to encourage water conservation following the severe drought in 2007 and 2008.

Ed Buchan is Raleigh's environmental coordinator. He says the city is ending the rebate program, because rate-payers have embraced the efficiency effort.

"So we have this business case analysis, we looked at the program, and we budgeted $500,000 a year for the rebates," Buchan says.

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Business & Economy
8:28 am
Fri November 29, 2013

North Carolina Holiday Shoppers Are Careful With Dollars

Several big box stores and department stores now open on Thanksgiving Day, before "Black Friday."
Credit Jonathan Alcom, Reuters

Many holiday shoppers are already at the malls on this busiest retail shopping day of the year.  But a new poll says most North Carolinians are keeping a tight purse this season.

Retailers have been working especially hard to get shoppers in stores on this Black Friday.

Kenneth Fernandez is director of the Elon University Poll.  He says there are several reasons why one-third of North Carolinians plan to spend less money on gifts this year.

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Business & Economy
5:00 am
Fri November 29, 2013

Great Harvest For NC Christmas Tree Farmers

A tree farm in Rutherwood, N.C.
Credit BlueRidgeKitties / Flickr

When Jessie Davis started tagging trees for sale in his 500-acre farm in western North Carolina this fall, he noticed his Frasier firs were taller and brighter than they were in previous years. He knew the reason was simple: this was a rainy year.

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Business & Economy
9:39 am
Wed November 27, 2013

Busy Holiday Travel Underway

Credit epSos via Flickr, Creative Commons

Cheaper gas prices and a recovering economy could mean more people hitting the road for the Thanksgiving holiday this week.

AAA Carolinas says gas is $.07 cheaper than last year, but almost $.30 less-expensive than it was Labor Day weekend. Spokeswoman Angela Daley says 36,000 more people plan to travel by car for the holiday this year.  She says the increase in traffic is most likely a sign of economic recovery.

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Business & Economy
3:16 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

Name This Underwear; Change A Life

The Phoebe Judge Floss of Digging for the Truth
Credit WUNC

Last year, Urban Ministries of Durham made national news with their online game, Spent. They teamed up with McKinney, an advertising agency, to help re-create the experience of living below the poverty line.

But, after playing Spent, "I think you get through...  and it feels pretty hopeless," said McKinney associate creative director, Jenny Nicholson. UMD and McKinney wanted to bring some of that hope back.

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The State of Things
11:34 am
Tue November 26, 2013

The Rebirth Of The North Carolina Textile Industry

An employee performs quality control on clothing made at the Mortex textile mill in Wendell, North Carolina
Credit USDAgov, via Flickr

  

For decades, the textile industry was an essential part of North Carolina’ economy. But the industry took a huge hit in the early 2000s due to outsourcing and high rates of automation.

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Business & Economy
8:10 am
Tue November 26, 2013

The State Of The Turkey Industry In North Carolina

Woman sports her turkey hat at the 2013 Turkey Festival in Raeford, NC.
Credit Leoneda Inge

A lot of Thanksgiving dinners across the country will feature a turkey grown and processed right here in North Carolina.  Butterball is headquartered here and produces about 20-percent of the nation’s turkeys. 

But Butterball reports it’s coming up a little short this year with fresh orders. And in another part of the state, one of the largest turkey slaughter houses is shut down.

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Business & Economy
6:38 pm
Fri November 22, 2013

NC’s Unemployment Rate Dips in September, October

Credit NC Commerce Department

The percentage of people that are unemployed in North Carolina continued to drop over the last two months, but that’s still more than the national average. The state’s rate was 8 percent in October, down from 8.3 percent in September and 8.7 percent in August, the state Commerce Department said today. Numbers for September were published today because some offices were closed when they were scheduled to be released during the federal government shut down.

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Transportation
8:17 am
Fri November 22, 2013

Light Rail Advisory Committee Holds First Meeting On Orange-Durham Corridor (Video)

An artist's rendering of a proposed light rail station in downtown Durham.
Credit Triangle Transit Authority

An advisory committee is set to meet for the first time to make recommendations for the next steps in building a light rail line in Orange and Durham counties. 

The group of government representatives, university officials, and business leaders convenes Friday morning in Chapel Hill.  Triangle Transit Authority plans to build a 17-mile line from UNC Hospitals to downtown Durham. 

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