NMCA Newsletter (4/08)

One of the goals of the NMCA this year has been the revival of the online newsletter. We hope this will be the first of many. We will continue to publish and mail the hard copy newsletter but there is a need to update and distribute news and information to our residents in a more timely manner. We hope you will find all our info relevant and informative. This newsletter is open to all our members and we hope you will give us information you feel may be appreciated by all in the area. News items and comments may be sent to Jean Martin.

NMCA COMMUNITY FAIR
APRIL 24 @ 7:00 PM
BOBBY PEARSE CENTER

This will be our first event of the year and we invite everyone to come and meet your neighbors and find out about all the opportunities to become a part of our wonderful neighborhood. Information on all our committees and activities will be presented. Refreshments will be served and it will be a great time to view and enjoy all the improvements made to the Rotary Park over the past year. Find out what’s happening and become a part of our future!

CITY DECLINES FUNDING FOR FINISHING PARK

The following letter was sent to Steve Mills concerning the Rotary Park’s request for the funding to complete the Park restoration. The Association is currently considering alternative resources. Suggestions and comments can be sent to Steve or any board member.

Our CIP 2nd workshop was last evening. Unfortunately, as Diane indicated the budget is so tight this year and there is no additional money for Rotary Park.

I wish we could say differently as your work and your plans are completely wonderful. There are still several neighborhoods in the city without as much as a pocket park and we are trying to accommodate these needs. The completed major renovation of new trees and landscaping was all the budget could allow. If there are any additional maintenance issues regarding what was completed, please
email Paul Ellis and CC me.

I do have a meeting with Bob Taylor coming up. I know he has nostalgia for Rotary Park as his son played baseball there. I am happy to ask him for one
more year of continued support from his discretionary funds.

Regards, Amy (Doyle-Ryberg)

The North Main Community Association and the City of Greenville and Duke Power Plan to Initiate Underground Power Lines
Robert W. Bainbridge

On March 14 Nell Stewart and I attended a meeting of Neighborhood Association Presidents called by James M. Bourey, Greenville City Manager, to hear a presentation on the proposed process of undergrounding power lines, which they call the Reliability Improvement Program or R.I.P.

A task force studied the issue and proposes to fund the improvements by Duke contributing ½ of 1% of their gross revenues from sale of electric power in Greenville to the project, and by the City increasing the franchise fee from four to five percent. (The Duke contribution is low, but the problem is not Duke but the South Carolina Public Utilities Commission.) These two sources will generate about $1.1 million per year. Because undergrounding of single-phase residential lines costs about $400,000 a mile, and three-phase lines cost $2 million per mile or more, the funding will not go far. Jim Campbell, the project manager for the City refers to it as his “100 year project.”

The City anticipates initiating the funding in April or May and will probably begin soliciting project proposals late in the year after sufficient funding has accumulated. The program at present calls for the City to pick up ALL costs, including new lines to serve houses, new meters if necessary, and repairs to sidewalks or landscaping. The process also involves relocating cable lines and telephone lines. The underground lines will require new green transformer boxes that sit on the ground fairly near the street. Richland Creek, our new subdivision off of Summit Drive and Rutherford Road was named as an example where people could go to see what this looks like.

The City and Duke will depend heavily on Community Associations to help identify projects and to help get property owner participation. (Near 100% participation is required.) NMCA is in a good position to be competitive for projects. We rank fairly high on priority issues such as frequent service interruptions and length of time needed to restore power. We also have a reasonable pool of talent and a good membership base. One rule is that the early projects cannot be near City Council member residences, so we will have to watch out for Amy and Susan’s houses! Another rule is that projects must include at least 20 residences. Projects in future years will be encouraged to build on to improvements already in place rather than just being scattered around.

I brought up at the meeting that North Main has some special issues, in particular lines that run across the back of lots on alleys that are now blocked. I think these lines need to be a priority, because they are difficult to access and can only be reached by going across our properties. (Both Nell and I have this problem, but it exists other places as well.) I also said that I would recommend that we submit about five projects a year. We may not get them all, but if we don’t push the process, WE will be dead and buried long before the power lines are.

I think the RIP program will fall under the Community Development Committee, and I am willing to take the lead in the process. I have already begun surveying the lines in the North Main area, a task that will also fit with the preparation of the neighborhood plan. For example, a major three-phase line in good condition runs all the way up Bennett Street/Summit Drive, whereas there are no power lines on North Main Street above Hillcrest. The Avondale area is served from alleys and the streetlights on upper North Main already have underground lines. Richland Creek and Avondale West also have underground lines.

I look forward to working with you to make this program successful for our community.

PLAN-IT GREENVILLE

Citizen Advisory Committees are currently being established for these themes. These groups will meet approximately three times during the spring and summer to discuss goals and recommendations for these themes. This will be an exciting opportunity for individuals to participate in the Plan-it Greenville process and we encourage all interested persons to sign up for a theme committee of their choice. Meetings are tentatively scheduled during the lunch hour and dates will be selected by the committee. If you are interested in participating on one of these committees, please email planit@greatergreenville.com or call 467-4476 for more information.

Plan-it Greenville Themes:

Neighborhood/Corridor Identity and Stability: The theme committee will address the issues of providing a stable environment for businesses and residents to flourish, “branding” specific areas with identifying qualities such as a music district, food district, art district, etc., and balancing neighborhood commercial and the meaning o f mixed use.

Housing: The theme committee will address the issues of providing adequate affordable housing and workforce housing while maintaining housing quality and preventing gentrification of neighborhoods.

Transportation: The theme committee will address public transportation and providing adequate infrastructure so that individuals have sidewalks, bike lanes and roads for travel options. Also Transit Oriented Developments
(TODs) will be studied and transit corridors will be identified.

Healthy Living and a Pedestrian-friendly environment: The theme committee will address creating walkable spaces, green spaces for parks and community vegetable gardens, sidewalks, cross walks, bike lanes, smaller streets with slower speeds, and neighborhood commercial and mixed use areas.

Economic Development: This committee will be responsible for addressing employment opportunities for local residents, attracting high tech businesses, training local employees for jobs, education opportunities, redevelopment and infill development of commercial space and other commercial corridors.

Green/ Environment: This theme committee will look at ways to protect natural spaces such as the Reedy River, landscaping requirements, encouraging Green development, reducing greenhouse gases through reduction of vehicle miles traveled, and sustainability in future development and redevelopment.

STANDING TOGETHER AGAINST GANGS WORKSHOP

The Youth Development Advisory Council will host Standing Together Against Gangs, a gang prevention workshop for front-line youth-serving organizations, April 18 from 9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at the Carolina First Center.

The collaborative program was organized with other local youth serving agencies including the City of Greenville, the Carolina Center for Behavioral Health and Greenville Family Partnership. Workshop sessions will include presentations from nationally recognized gang/youth violence experts. The program will also encourage discussions between agencies related to the prevention of youth violence, gang encroachment and involvement and the use of drugs and alcohol.

The Youth Development Advisory Council reports to the Safe Communities Coalition to address juvenile crime, violence and drug use. The council strives to address community problems through local collaborative programs with a primary emphasis on juvenile delinquency, prevention and rehabilitation by addressing issues that affect families.

The workshop is open to individuals who work directly with local youth and the deadline for registration is April 4. For registration and event information, call the City of Greenville Community Programs Bureau at 864-467-4491.

The Elements Grand Opening Event and Butterfly Release

Saturday, May 17, 2008 1:00 – 3:00 pm
300 Mohawk Drive, Greenville, SC 29609

TRV Development invites you celebrate the opening of The Elements. Events will include a free class on Natural Wildlife Gardening at 1 p.m. Led by Amelia Hamilton, Permaculture Designer and Herbalist, the class will offer an introduction to permaculture, a natural, efficient, elegant approach to gardening that harnesses the power of natural ecosystems, allowing your plants to do the most work for you. A butterfly release and tours explaining the sustainable features of the neighborhood are also planned. For more information or to register, call 864.235.7003. Walk-ins are welcome.

Christine Morgan
Marketing Director
Coldwell Banker Caine
864.250.4177 Direct
864.255.9401 Fax

NMCA Newsletter (4/08)
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