Thursday, February 28, 2013

What happened at the public hearing?

For those of us in the neighborhood around the proposed CVS development, it was so wonderful to see so many dfferent people at the public hearing and engaged in the process.  And it made a huge difference that the Aldermen recieved so much input through emails and letters.

Thank-you all for showing up, writing letters and spreading the word.  This is what an engaged community looks like.

Folks need to stay engaged.  CVS is planning to come back with a new plan and no one really knows what that will look like.

So what happened Tuesday night?

You can watch the tape here:
Pay particular attention to 14:30-31:10  and 38:30

Also see here:

We'll try to write this short blog to sorta explain things how we see it and update as we get more info.
The short answer is:
The town avoided a long, drawn-out public hearing on zoning by indicating to CVS that Aldermen were not inclined to change the zoning of that area.  CVS said they would come back with a plan that does comply with the current zoning.

The Mayor made it a point to explain at the public hearing the difference between the rezoning request and the conditional use permit.  Here is what we got out of it (don't know if we got it right):
The zoning decision is legistlatve and the town has broad authority on those matters.. The Aldermen can into take account public input on rezoning before and during a public hearing.  The Conditional Use Permit is a quasi-judicial decision.  Which means, like a court case, the Aldermen can only consider evidence during the public hearing and not before.  The relevant evidence would be about whether the planned development complies with the zoning and town ordinances (? ) (this is where our understanding is a bit fuzzy)..   

If CVS is serious about not changing ANY of the zoning, then none of their development could be on Center St.  This includes the parking lot on the corner of Weaver & Center St.  We're not sure if that is what CVS has in mind.  It appears the Developers could only use 3 properties along N. Greensboro St instead of 6 around the whole block. We aren't sure what this plan will be, but they said they would bring it to the town in April.

The shaded area on the map below appears to be 3 lots that CVS could use to build a 24-hour store and parking under current zoning designations.  Again, this is just our interpretation.. town planning staff would be the official source for this information.  

(click image to enlarge)
News coverage:

Check out Patrick's thoughtful blog post on this development and important corner in Carrboro

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Public hearing still set for Tues 2/26 (CVS still asking for last minute delays)

1.) Chapel Hill News Front page article

2.) CVS has requested a 3rd delay in the public hearing.  These delays can confuse the public

3.) The Public hearing is still set for 2/26.  Please come to the hearing.  Email the Aldermen and request that they open the public hearing.
Todays Chapel Hill News has a front page article about the 2/26 CVS public hearing:

The public has been notified about the hearing through official Carrboro signs, radio, emails, newspapers and blogs.

On Friday 2/22 at about 4:20PM, CVS emailed the town to ask for another delay:
See the end of this email chain from Town of Carrboro's media list-serv:!topic/official-correspondence/8DzrrxWu4wY

This is the 3rd time CVS has requested a delay:
The original public hearing was scheduled for last year, March 27, 2012.  CVS requested to delay the hearing until April 17, 2012.  In late March, 2012 CVS requested the hearing to be delayed indefinitely.  Now the public hearing is set for February 26, 2013 at 7:30PM. 

The Board of Aldermen will vote on whether to grant another delay on Tues.  It is really too late to delay this again and this is confusing to the public.

Please come to the hearing on Tues 2/26 and ask to speak about the CVS rezoning.

The Board of Aldermen have denied these requests for delays in the past.  For example, on Sept. 25th 2012, the Aldermen voted to hold a public hearing to rezone the property that Family Dollar was trying to build a store on.  There was a request by the property owners to delay the hearing.  The Aldermen opted not to delay that hearing.

Email the Aldermen and ask them not to delay the public hearing.
-this has been going on for over 2 years, it is now time to have a hearing
-this is the third delay requested
-this is confusing to the public

Aldermen contacts are here:

Friday, February 22, 2013

CVS Hearing, Letters & Center St. party on Sunday!

1. Make your plans to be at the Public Hearing this Tues. 2/26 at 7:30PM
2. Keep the emailing your letters to the Aldermen & Mayor.  Do it ASAP so your elected officials have time to read them. Get them in by Monday at the latest.

Here are the contact emails for the Aldermen:
Click this link for ideas for letters:
3. Last night the Planning board voted against recommending the rezoning to accommodate the CVS. This is only advice to Board of Aldermen.  The Board of Aldermen will make the final decision.
4. Come to the Center Street neighborhood party this Sunday at 12-4PM  Details below
12:00pm until 4:00pm

  • Center Street, Carrboro NC
  • Come meet your neighbors and members of the Carrboro community this Sunday! We'll be gathering on historic Center Street in the Old Mill Village downtown, near Fitch Lumber.

    Come enjoy games, grilling, and good times. Center Street residents are opening up their lawns, porches, and driveways to host this community party. Live music Billy Sugarfix 2PM & possible porch jam later.

    Learn about the proposed development (CVS) that will affect this residential block and what you can do to get involved.
    More info here:

    Walk, bike, or drive and park in the municipal lot on Weaver Street; there is no street parking on Center Street.

    12 noon - 4 pm. All are welcome!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Write Letters Before the 2/26 Hearing

1. Come to the  Public Hearing:  Tues February 26th, 7:30PM, Carrboro Town Hall

2.  Look at this slide show to if you want to get an idea of what CVS is proposing to do:
Click here to see the presentation. 
Some of the newest CVS plans are slightly different, but not that much.

3.  Write letters to the Aldermen ASAP.  Specifically address the rezoning.  We suggest you put "201 N. Greensboro St. Rezoning" in the subject line.  This is because of a quirky way local government works.  The Aldermen will vote on 2 issues; The Rezoning and the Conditional Use Permit.  The Alderman can only take comments on the Rezoning before the meeting, but not the permit.

Actually when the town calls this the "Rezoning of 201 N. Greensboro St.", that is a bit misleading.  Its actually a rezoning of 100 Center St, 104 Center St, 103 Short St, 101 Short St,  203 N Greensboro and 201 N Greensboro St.  This is 6 out of the 7 properties on this block.  The rezoning is pretty radical since properties will be changed from residential and small commercial uses to heavy commercial uses that would allow 24 hour big box stores.  This rezoning takes place right next to the established historic residential neighborhood on Center St.  Plus this rezoning would remove the Downtown Neighborhood Protection overlay that was put in place to protect the adjacent residential neighborhoods.

Here are some ideas for letters to the Aldermen:

-This rezoning would reverse 40 years of town policy and zoning that has protected the historic downtown neighborhoods from heavy commercial development.

-Carrboro's 2020 vision document lays out several policies for downtown development.  This massive rezoning for CVS does not adhere to these policies:

  • Policy 2.11: “Infill development should take place in a manner that...enhances neighboring areas.”
  • Policy 2.42: “Development throughout Carrboro should be consistent with its distinctive town character. The town should adhere to policies that limit the widening of roads, encourage plantings alongside roads, preserve historic areas, buildings and older neighborhoods, and retain unspoiled green spaces and other natural areas.”
  • Policy 3.1: “In the interest of environmental preservation, new commercial development must minimize negative environmental impact, it must emphasize appropriate buffers, and it must not compromise the integrity of established neighborhoods.

- It is more appropriate and consistent with town policies is to keep the Fringe Commercial and residential zonings on Center Street and allow small businesses to thrive there.  An obvious example is the "Curl-up And Dye" salon on Center St.

-The current zoning already allows for heavy commercial development along Greensboro St (201 & 203 N. Greensboro St).  That is the appropriate place to have this heavy commercial development.  The Downtown Neighborhood Protection (DNP) should be kept on this block.

-CVS is already located in an area that is appropriately zoned for a 24-hour Pharmacy and Grocery Store.  There is no compelling  reason for CVS to move.  The current CVS store can expand in its current location.  CVS and Harris Teeter can work with the Carr Mill Mall to redevelop their current location if they wish to expand their stores.

-When CVS bought properties on Center St, they were aware that the current zoning would not allow heavy commercial on those properties for their 24-hour Parking lot.  There is no compelling reason that the Town of Carrboro should change their zoning  and policies to accommodate CVS corporation in moving their store.

Here is the contact emails for the Aldermen:

Also copy the town Clerk:

Sunday, February 10, 2013

CVS Public Hearing 2/26

Public Hearing:  Tues February 26th, 7:30PM, Carrboro Town Hall

Please tell the town that the citizens of Carrboro do not want a suburban style big box CVS in the Center of Carrboro. 

After a long delay, CVS has requested a public hearing on the rezoning of the properties of on the corner of Greensboro and Weaver St. in order build a 24 hour high volume CVS store and a parking lot.

The developers have submitted slightly revised plans to the town. 
You can see those site plans here and renderings here

Since these plans have changed very little, most-all of our previous concerns (and posts on this blog) have not been addressed..

We'll update the blog soon with further thoughts and information.

In order to make this zoning change to tear down Historic houses & large trees on this block, CVS must demonstrate that this zoning change advances public health, safety and welfare.
Please attend the hearing if you can.  Citizens can speak at the meeting and it would be best to comment on how this development will impact public health, safety and welfare.

And most importantly, please write your Aldermen to let them know how you feel about potential rezoning for this development and its effect on the center of Carrboro and the historic mill district.  Make sure that you specifically address the Zoning Change in your letters.  The Aldermen can only consider public opinion about the zoning change before the hearing.

Board of Alderman Contacts are here:
Include the town clerk in your emails so they are assured become part of the of the public record.

This is Not a Done Deal

The adjacent neighbors have filed a "Protest Petition" that legally triggers a 3/4 majority vote of the Alderman to change the zoning. see here.
This means 2 no votes would defeat this zoning.  We would like as many Alderman to vote no as possible.

Stay tuned for updates and if you have questions our contact is CenterOfCarrboro [at]

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Modified plans: CVS meeting on June 27th

The CVS developers will hold another public meeting on Wednesday, June 27, 2012 at the Carrboro Town Hall.  Please come if you 're interested in this project that could change the face of downtown Carrboro.  The developers will present 3 versions of a revised site plan and a some new drawings of the buildings.

All 3 versions of the updated plan still calls for a ~12,300 square foot, high volume, 24-hour CVS store on the 1st floor and a 2nd story with storage for CVS and office space.  Large delivery trucks will still have to come down Short Street to turn into the parking lot (signage currently indicates large delivery trucks are not permitted on Short St).  There is still the problem of increased traffic, noise and light pollution for the residents on Center street.  These plans will all still require a rezoning of some properties and possibly the elimination of the Downtown Neighborhood Protection overlay.

All the plans are linked below with some general descriptions of our first glance at the plans:

This would require rezoning a residential lot and a small business lot and tearing down of houses on Center St. (in addition to other zoning changes)  There are less parking spaces than the original plan.  Many trees will still be cut down.  24-hour parking lot still very close to Center St residences.

Similar to OPTION 1, but it appears that residential and small business lot would not need to be rezoned.  Slightly more space between Center St residents and the 24 hour parking lot.  It is unclear if houses will be torn down on Center St.

Almost the same as OPTION2a, but the dumpster is moved and parking lot has a slightly different configuration.

New Elevations
New elevation drawings as viewed from Greensboro and Weaver Streets.

Below is the letter sent by the developer:

"As part of our commitment to creating a quality project, we invite you to join us on
Wednesday, June 27, 2012 at the Carrboro Town Hall Board Room, Room 110 for an
open discussion of the proposed project.

This project has been reviewed by the Town Planning Board. Several changes to the
plans will be presented based on comments received from the Planning Board. This will
be an opportunity to ask questions and make comments on the updated plans. If you
have a question that you would like addressed at the meeting, please email the question to
Chris Bostic at"

Saturday, March 10, 2012

CVS Public Hearing Tues. April 17th 7:30PM

1. CVS has requested & was granted a delay in the public hearing to Tues. April 17th 7:30PM at Carrboro Town Hall

2. Neighbors have filed a "Protest Petition" that legally triggers a 3/4 majority vote of the Alderman to change the zoning. see here

3. Please contact the mayor & the members of the Board of Aldermen if you are concerned about the proposed large CVS development. see here

1. Public hearing on the CVS rezoning request is Tues. April 17th 7:30PM at Carrboro Town Hall
CVS has requested & was granted a delay in the public hearing.  

The planning board (& other town boards) met on March 1st on the CVS request.  The planning board will finalize their meeting minutes & their recommendations to the  Aldermen at their meeting next week.  Copies of the planning board comments should be available by request from the Town.

The neighbors and residents of Carrboro have outlined many reasons why this development will not work for this location in a previous blog post.
These concerns include but are not limited to: 
  • Increased light, noise & air pollution for residential neighbors in the Old Mill House District from this 24hr business that will be within 50 feet from some homes
  • increased traffic & congestion in downtown Carrboro and through the residential neighborhoods.  This will result in increased safety hazards for pedestrians, bicyclists & motorists.
  • this is simply the wrong place for this high volume 24hr CVS. 

The neighbors and residents of Carrboro are not against developing the corner of W Weaver St and N Greensboro St.  The current zoning in place in this area of town, allows for a more creative mixed use development along Weaver & Greensboro and appropriately protects the safety, health and welfare of the residential neighbors.

It is important to note that CVS already has a downtown location in an appropriate place and has a long-term lease with Carr Mill Mall and there nothing compelling them to leave that location.  It is possible for CVS to expand in that location.  Further, currently owns less than half of the land that they are proposing to build on.

2. Neighbors have filed a "Protest Petition" 

see the Carrboro Citizen Article on the subject.

This petition legally triggers a 3/4 majority vote of the Alderman to change the zoning.  In short, this means only 2 aldermen need to vote against the rezoning request in order to deny this request.

3. Please contact the Mayor & the members of the Board of Aldermen

It is important to note:
"If the Board concludes in the exercise of its legislative discretion that the proposed rezoning would not be consistent with the public health, safety, or welfare, it may deny the application in accordance with the same procedures applicable to any ordinance amendment request."
The the Mayor and Aldermen will listen to your concerns about this very significant proposed 24hr high-volume CVS.  
see here for the Alderman and Mayor's contact info:

A Chapel Hill lawyer representing CVS is already using an opportunity to meet with the Mayor..
See the publicly available email here:

Carrboro residents can also exercise their right to access to their elected officials.

Your Neighbors in the Center of Carrboro 

Monday, November 28, 2011

CVS meeting: Wed. Dec. 7th, 7PM at Carrboro Town Hall

The CVS Developer is holding a neighborhood meeting on Wednesday December 7th at 7-9PM at Town Hall. Please come if you can.
And please submit questions ahead of time to
See the earlier posts on the blog ( for a refresher on this project proposed for the corner of Greensboro & W. Weaver St.
The town offered comments to CVS and then CVS revised it's plan. The changes were presented to the Planning Board a few weeks ago and changes appear to be minimal. 
Here is the Planning Board's Reaction to the changes.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Update On CVS Project

As reported in our local newspapers (see here & here), in May, CVS submitted plans to the town of Carrboro to build a large CVS and parking lot on the corner of N. Greensboro St. &  Weaver St.  This development would demolish at least 2 historic buildings, cut down many trees, create more traffic problems and the parking lot would be placed on a residential street.

The plan from CVS has been turned into the town and town staff are reviewing it and will be going back and forth on revisions. I believe any citizen in Carrboro can request to take a look at the plan submitted.  I don't expect that the Carrboro Board of Aldermen will vote on the plan and specifically the zoning changes until the fall.  The Board of Alderman do not hold meetings in July & August.

The advisory boards of the town met and heard a presentation by the CVS developer.  It wasn't a public hearing but the advisory boards all had an opportunity to give feedback and here is a link to that feedback from them:

Please take a look at the feedback.  It is very important information.

Here are some more pieces of information that are relevant to the development:
  1. CVS has a lease in its current location (next to Harris Teeter) for several years.  The current CVS building is owned by Carr Mill Mall and CVS has the right pursue expansion at that location.  It seems there is no compelling reason that CVS has to move from its current location.
  2. In its plans submitted to the town, CVS is asking the town to remove the Downtown Neighborhood Protection(DNP) designation for all the properties it would build on.  CVS is also requesting to rezone 3 properties on Center St.  Without this rezoning CVS will not be able to build much of their parking lot. The alderman have the right to not approve the rezoning of the properties on this residential street.  Please let the Carrboro aldermen know if you are opposed to the rezoning of these properties.
  3. The Traffic Study done by a CVS contractor has also been submitted to the town.  The traffic study was during construction on Weaver St.  I am not a traffic engineer, but this seems problematic for the study.  Also, many side streets that drivers use to avoid downtown construction traffic were not considered in the study.
  4. I have put together a presentation to show what our neighborhood looks like now and put some of the changes that will occurr in downtown Carrboro as a result of the proposed CVS development into context.  Click here to see the presentation. 

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Community Meeting Sunday April 3rd at 2PM

All Carrboro Citizens are invited to a community organizing meeting to discuss the potential CVS development in downtown Carrboro.

The meeting will take place on Sunday April 3rd from 2:00-3:30pm at Carrboro Town Hall.

The proposed development of the corner of Greensboro and Weaver Street is of great importance to everyone in the community. We are not anti-development and are very interested in the smart development of this corner, located in the heart of Carrboro. There are several concerns about the proposed CVS project including:
• Traffic volume and congestion
• Traffic increase into the surround neighborhoods
• Pedestrian safety
• 24-Hour parking, noise
• The demolition of historic buildings for a parking lot

Overall, this does not appear to be a good fit for a high volume, large CVS. If you are concerned about the future of this corner please join us on Sunday. We will present the status of the CVS proposal, discuss drawings of their plans, brainstorm creative ideas about what we would like to see on that
corner, and end with action items and next steps.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

What is CVS proposing to do?

What is happening?
CVS is proposing to build a 2 story 24,000 square foot building and parking lot in the Center of Carrboro on the corner of Weaver St and N. Greensboro St. (See Map).  In order to construct this building at least 2 Historic Mill-houses will be demolished and many mature trees will need to be cut-down.  See the developer's initial plans at this Link.

What are the consequences for Carrboro?
To name a few..
  • This major development will have a huge impact on the character of downtown Carrboro. (see aerial photos).  The effects will be clearly seen from the Weaver St Market Lawn.
  • Traffic volume and congestion will increase at an already dangerous intersection of downtown. This will increase danger for pedestrians and bicyclists.  Traffic will also increase into the surrounding neighborhoods.
  • A high volume 24-Hour CVS will dramatically increase noise and light pollution very near to the mill-house residential neighborhood.  There will be more truck deliveries and dumpster pick-ups.
We simply believe this is the wrong place to put the highest volume CVS in the state of NC.
However, we do believe this corner could be developed by others in a smart way that would be a much better fit for downtown.

What can you do?
  • Tell the Carrboro Alderman your opinion on this project.  The developer must ask the town to rezone residential and light-commercial properties on Center Street in order for them to build a parking lot.
  • Attend meeting the developer is holding on  March 14th at 7PM at Carrboro Town Hall.
  • Attend community organizing meeting April 3rd at 2PM at Carrboro Town Hall.
  • Join out Google Groups announcement list (in lower right corner of this blog OR click here).  This will be a low-traffic list with only essential announcements.
  • Discuss in comments section below and tell everyone who might be affected by this.
More Information & news articles:

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Test Post

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