Slope development ordinance: Key changes

Haywood County Commissioners made several changes to the slope development ordinance before passing it. The ordinance kicks in when a cut-and-fill slope exceeds a certain threshold. That threshold is what commissioners altered. Here’s the net effect of the changes:

• Proposed: A slope stabilization plan is required for any cut-and-fill slope taller than 10 feet.

• Change: This measure was eliminated.

• Proposed: A slope stabilization plan is required for any earth moving activity on natural slope cuts that exceeds 40 percent.

• Change: This measure was eliminated.

• Proposed: A slope stabilization plan is required for a cut slope that exceeds a 1 to 1 ratio of run to rise.

• Change: Applies only to slope cuts that exceed 15 feet in height.

• Proposed: A slope stabilization plan is required for a fill slope that exceeds a 1.5 to 1 ratio of run to rise.

• Change: Applies only to slopes that exceed 15 feet in height.

Group gathers to discuss growth in Jackson

By Sarah Kucharski • Staff Writer

About 80 area residents gathered at the Jackson County Recreation Center Thursday night to learn more about the county’s new land development plan and discuss the future of growth.

Slippery timing: Developers may try to rush plans to beat ordinance

Haywood County commissioners are poised to pass a slope development ordinance at their meeting next week, but a big question remains: when will the new ordinance go into effect?

Using development to save mountain farms

Not too long ago there occurred an unlikely meeting of the minds. Sylva developer John Beckman and Whittier farmer William Shelton sat down in the back of Sylva’s Spring Street Café with maps and blueprints to talk about the issue of disappearing farmland in the mountains of Western North Carolina.

Slope proposal supported at hearing: Concerns raised, but most agree it’s time for steep slope laws

Slope ordinance

Haywood County commissioners are considering a slope development ordinance with the following restrictions:

New neighbors: Change is moving into Jackson County’s Tuckasegee community

By Sarah Kucharski • Staff Writer

About half way between Sylva and Cashiers on N.C. 107, between Jackson County’s Caney Fork and Glenville communities, is the small but busy Tuckasegee.

Keeping downtown alive: Revitalization organizations debate how to best improve downtown communities, as Sylva refocuses following a major spending cut

By Sarah Kucharski • Staff Writer

With a quick trip on Main Street in downtown Sylva, it’s easy enough to see the small town as a quaint collection of professional offices, locally owned restaurants, galleries, clothing and specialty shops.

Each business is located in a historically significant building, many of the old brick storefronts still bearing the name of their original owner somewhere up high in the masonry. Dotted with trees and park benches and old style lampposts, Main Street lures tourists for some lunch and an afternoon of shopping. Gaggles of families come from Georgia, South Carolina, and Florida, indicated by the license plates lined up along the street’s two-hour parking.

Statement from the Concerned Citizens for Responsible Development made at the Swain County commissioners meetings on Tuesday, July 11

The concern of our group is that Swain County appears to have no control of development to inside and outside interests.

Bethel survey

The Bethel survey polled a random sample of 273 residents in Bethel via telephone. The Bethel Rural Community Organization sanctioned the study to identify community sentiment toward development, farmland and what makes their community special. Here are some of the more striking results:

Macon survey

The survey in Macon County set out to quantify the value the public places on the landscape. Surveys sought to measure the public’s willingness to contribute toward conservation, and if so, how much.

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