David Simonton | Indy Week

David Simonton 
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Re: “The INDY Endorses Kay Crowder for Raleigh City Council District D

My observation as a long-time District D resident is that if you're a constituant that Kay Crowder agrees with, you're golden. But if she doesn't agree with you, you're screwed. Just ask the 78% of the residents who live on the 1200-block of Lorimer Road who don't want a sidewalk how they feel about having one foisted on them anyway! (You can find two INDY articles on the subject using the Search bar above.)

So much for Crowder's dedication to preserving the character of Raleigh's older neighborhoods...

Posted by David Simonton on 10/04/2017 at 10:24 AM
Posted by David Simonton on 08/28/2017 at 4:28 PM

Re: “A divisive street-improvement plan raises questions about Raleigh’s citizen-petition process

For anyone wishing to keep up with the latest news about the Lorimer Road project, there's a new-ish public Facebook Group dedicated to the subject, here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/7487513052…

Please have a look - and consider joining! Thanks.

Posted by David Simonton on 06/14/2017 at 8:11 PM

Re: “A divisive street-improvement plan raises questions about Raleigh’s citizen-petition process

A revised project-cost estimate has just been released.

I have to wonder how Raleigh residents feel about $2,000,000.00 being spent to install a sidewalk on this minor road in West Raleigh, where the speed limit is 25mph, where there is little traffic and even less pedestrian traffic, and where a fair number of residents don't even want it!

Is the fact that Kay Crowder wants this justification enough? Is this really the best use of our money? Has a Cost/Benefit Analysis been conducted?


Posted by David Simonton on 06/07/2017 at 8:21 PM

Re: “A divisive street-improvement plan raises questions about Raleigh’s citizen-petition process

It should be noted that Donna Burford, the petitioner, works for Council Member Kay Crowder, District D Representative (Lorimer Road is located in District D). The fact that Crowder did not recuse herself when the vote was taken on Burford's petition, but instead whispered in the other Concil member's ears just before the (unanimous) vote, strikes me as being worthy of further investigation, especially considering what's been learned about the (blatently rigged) process since. There is now a website dedicated to the details of those circumstances: https://lorimerroadraleigh.com/ It was created in part as a "heads up" for other older Raleigh neighborhoods: don't let what happened here happen to you! Finally, it should also be noted that neither Burford nor Crowder actually live on Lorimer Road, and that neither of them live on streets with sidewalk themselves.

Posted by David Simonton on 05/16/2016 at 1:26 PM
Posted by David Simonton on 04/22/2016 at 2:58 PM

Re: “Raleigh City Council Live Blog: Evening Edition

In an email addressed to District Representative Kay Crowder back in August, Petitioner Donna Burford pleaded for a "4’ or even 3’ setback" on the west side of Lorimer Road. This modest concession would have been in keeping with the City's guiding principle:
. . . .

WHEREAS, the City Council is committed to the preservation of existing neighborhoods by maintaining their character and aesthetic qualities....
. . . .
We were promised a project with minimal impact here; what we got instead was one-foot less than the maximum.

At an October Neighborhood Meeting, with Council Member Crowder present, a resident reminded her, "We were told we had way more flexibility in terms of the size of setbacks and sidewalks." To which Mrs. Crowder replied, "The new UDO says no."

It took bait&switch tactics and coercion, but never-the-less the City finally found a way (after numerous failed petitions here) to infiltrate this old, West Raleigh neighborhood. As Jimmy Upchurch with the Public Works Department reported on September 1, "...If we completed Lorimer, that would just set up more of the network to get a continuous sidewalk throughout the neighborhood."

There's nothing wrong with sidewalks. But there is something very wrong about duping Raleigh's citizens to get them; and something very wrongheaded about imposing 2016 standards in existing neighborhoods, effectively destroying rather than "maintaining their character and aesthetic qualities." That could easily be accomplished in these old neighborhoods by reducing the width of sidewalks and setbacks — but the new UDO says "no."

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Posted by David Simonton on 03/02/2016 at 9:52 AM

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