City of Raleigh

Workers at a Piedmont Improvement Project site.
NCDOT / NCDOT

The state is expanding track capacity on the rail line connecting Raleigh and Charlotte. It's part of the Piedmont Improvement Project, which received $520 million dollars in federal funding.

An image of the Raleigh pop duo Season & Snare
Thomas at Photography Pop

For Autumn Brand and Casey Allen, every song starts with a story. As soon as the couple began dating, they also began crafting songs based on their personal experiences and upbringing. They are featured as the pop-rock duo Season & Snare in the new arts project from the City of Raleigh called "Oak City Sessions."

A picture of a mercury vapor street lamp.
Famartin / Wikipedia

Duke Energy will begin replacing Raleigh's 30,000 conventional high pressure sodium and mercury vapor street lamps with more energy-efficient light-emitting diode—LED—streetlights this week.

Duke Energy spokeswoman Meredith Archie says several North Carolina cities are making the switch, including Wilmington, Henderson and Cary.

"LED lights are more energy efficient, so they reduce the carbon footprint. And as a result of that, they expend less energy so saving money and cost on energy bills," Archie says.

Binodkpn / Wikipedia Creative Commons

Health care organizations in the Triangle have difficulty providing hospice care for terminally ill children.  End-of-life care models for children are limited in the Raleigh-Durham area.

But a new program starting in September at Transitions LifeCare will provide hospice care for 10 terminally ill children at a time.

A teenager locking down a summer job as a lifeguard used to be a big deal.

But this summer, several parks and recreation departments and YMCA's across the country are reporting a shortage of lifeguards. And an improving economy may be playing a big role.

The Ridge Road swimming pool in Raleigh, N.C. is packed. There are easily 200 people here competing in a swim meet, some of them as young as 5 years old.

Shotgun houses in Raleigh's historic Oakwood neighborhood.
Universal Pops / flickr.com/photos/universalpops/6911412279

The Raleigh City Council has scheduled another hearing for people who want to talk about proposed zoning requirements. An overflow crowd turned out at this this week's Council meeting.

At issue is a proposal to update zoning requirements for about one-third of the city to complete Raleigh's Unified Development Ordinance.

An image of the Duke Vespers Ensemble Choir
Duke Chapel

When Duke Vespers Ensemble Director Brian Schmidt told his choir they would be singing with the Rolling Stones during the band's concert Wednesday at Raleigh’s Carter-Finley Stadium, he was prompted with one question:

 

“Are you serious?”

An image of runners in flip flops
The nOg Run Club

 

For three years, the nOg Run Club has been trying to break a record. It may have achieved that thanks to hundreds of plastic sandals.

More than 600 runners gathered at Raleigh’s Oakwood Cemetery for a fun and floppy run Saturday. Their goal was to try and break the record for the most people running with flip-flops at one time.

A picture of the interior of the Oakwood Inn
Leland Little Auctions / https://www.lelandlittle.com/auctions/

Traditional bed-and-breakfasts are flipping their ‘Open’ sign to ‘Closed’ in a growing era where more people are going online to swap lodging through services like Airbnb. Historic homes are turning their lights off while years of cozy weekend getaways are becoming only a memory.

An image of somebody spraypainted a wall
Wikimedia / Creative Commons

A bill is moving through the state legislature that would make graffiti a felony offense for a third-time offender. Under House Bill 552, anyone who has two or more prior convictions for graffiti vandalism could face up to 39 months in jail.

An image of Franklin Street in Chapel Hill
Wikipedia / Creative Commons

Update: Read a summary detailing some of your feedback about places not mentioned in the New York Times article.  

Oakwood Lives!

May 27, 2015
Image of actors George Jack and Greg Paul performing in a production of Oakwood Lives!
Burning Coal Theatre

Oakwood Cemetery is the final resting place for more than 20,000 citizens, including notable community members and prominent state and national leaders. A collaboration between Burning Coal Theatre and Oakwood Cemetery honors the stories of some of the deceased each year through staged production.

Predictify Me
www.predictify.me

The United Nations says suicide bombings in Pakistan are shockingly common, especially near schools.  A Raleigh start-up company is working to change that.

The security software company is called “Predictify Me.”

Rob Burns is the CEO of "Predictify Me."  He and co-founder Zeeshan Usmani of Pakistan have developed an algorithm they say can warn schools when an attack is imminent. 

A picture of the Duke Energy Performing Arts Center
raleighconvention.com

The Duke Energy Performing Arts Center is seeking bids for a $10 million renovation project this summer.

General Manager Jim Lavery says the center needs to upgrade the women's restrooms, lighting throughout the building, paint, wallpaper, and the concession stand area. The money comes from Raleigh's General Debt Service fund.

"If you do 6-700 events a year, there's something going on every day. Our weekends are really, really full," Lavery says. "We're just trying to bring everything back to where it needs to be just because of the usage."

A picture of a shadow of scaffolding.
Trapac / Flickr

There was a deadly construction accident Monday in Raleigh.  A number of men were working on an 11-story building in a busy section of downtown when the accident occurred.  

Witnesses say three men fell to their deaths and a fourth man was hospitalized when scaffolding buckled and collapsed.

John Boyette is a spokesman for the City of Raleigh.

“This involved a scaffold, a collapse of a scaffold.  So that seems to be what the investigation is centering on," said Boyette.

Photo: Lot in Northeast Raleigh
Courtesy Michi Njeri

Members of the North Carolina House of Representatives are scheduled to vote Monday night on a contentious bill that would curtail home owners’ ability to block certain type of construction in their neighborhood.

Under the proposal, lawmakers would eliminate from state law “protest petitions,” a nearly century-old procedure that property owners can use to force a three-fourths vote from their city council to change the zoning classification of an adjoining property.

A picture of running tap water.
malla_mi / Flickr

Raleigh's Public Utilities Department wants the City Council to consider raising water rates to cover infrastructure upgrades.

But even though the area's population is growing, the city is not getting more revenue through water use. Carman says conservation minded citizens using more efficient appliances have cut household water use almost in half.

Google Fiber
Leoneda Inge

The next cities to benefit from ultra-high-speed internet service will be in the southern United States.  Google Fiber announced yesterday it is bringing its super-fast access to Atlanta, Nashville, Charlotte and to the Raleigh-Durham area in the Triangle.

There have been rumors for weeks Google was about to make a big announcement. Michael Slinger, Director of Business Operations for Google Fiber made it official.

The Oakwood Inn Bed and Breakfast in downtown Raleigh
Jorge Valencia

Raleigh council members are continuing to debate how to manage the growing number of homes whose owners are listing on sites such as airbnb.com for short term rentals.
 

In a report he presented at a council meeting Tuesday, Raleigh Planning Director Travis Crane said the rental listings could represent additional income for property owners and the city, but can generate additional traffic and a parking crunch in residential areas.

Dorothea Dix campus
Ted Buckner / Flickr/Creative Commons

Governor Pat McCrory’s administration and Raleigh leaders have reached an agreement for the city to buy the old Dorothea Dix campus in order to create a park. Advocates have lobbied for years to create a grand city park on the 307-acre property, but those efforts were frustrated until now.

Governor McCrory and Raleigh’s mayor, Nancy McFarlane, held a joint news conference Monday at the executive mansion. They spoke before an audience of park advocates, state lawmakers and members of the business community who’ve long supported the idea to re-purpose the Dorothea Dix campus.  

Lulu Publishing

    

Raleigh native Smedes York has witnessed and facilitated decades of growth in his hometown.

His father developed the iconic Cameron Village in the late 1940s, and he tackled the redevelopment of downtown during his time as mayor from 1979 to 1983.

His memoir, Growing up with Raleigh (Lulu Publishing/2014), documents a life of business, politics and urban planning in North Carolina's capital city.

Host Frank Stasio talks with Smedes York and historian John Sharpe about Growing Up With Raleigh.

A manhole cover at night
Evan Blaser / Flickr/Creative Commons

Scott Huler explores city infrastructure for his new book, On the Grid. Listen to the stories of what's been found in Raleigh's sewers:

Here's an excerpt from the book:

A man out on a mission to hand his Walk [Your City] signage in Charleston.
flickr.com/photos/125627375@N04

Lots of cities cater to populations that prefer to drive.

Man sitting on a park bench
Grant MacDonald / Flickr/Creative Commons

Raleigh voters have approved a $92-million bond referendum to improve parks and recreational facilities in the capital city.  The measure was solidly supported, 68 percent to 32 percent.

Voters' approval will mean a rise in property tax of 1.72 cents that will go into effect next July.

Funds from that tax increase will also pay for acquisition of new park land and new construction.  The plans for improvement are detailed in a new System Plan adopted by the Raleigh City Council.

Photo of Republican John Alexander and Democrat Tom Bradshaw
Alexander for NC Senate, Tom Bradshaw for NC Senate

The friendship between Tom Bradshaw and John Alexander has lasted more than 40 years, and has revolved around YMCA gymnasiums.

Bradshaw has been dedicated to the Y since he went to youth camps growing up. And Alexander, whose father got involved decades ago, has spent much of his life at the YMCA.  

They’re both on the executive board of the YMCA of the Triangle and on other community boards.

This year they both want to be the state senator for the northern part of Wake County.

Pages