a diverse community that spans over 700 square miles, Chatham
County residents seemed connected, communicative and ready to brainstorm
solutions at the “One Chatham” community forum held Wednesday in Pittsboro. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss issues of economic development, housing and disparity across the county. The Chatham News + Record partnered with Our Chatham to host the event, and a panel of five community leaders helped facilitate the conversation: Alyssa Byrd, Tami Schwerin, Stephanie Watkins-Cruz, Paul Cuadros and Susan Levy. Bill Horner III, publisher of the Chatham News + Record, served as the panel’s moderator. The panelists at One Chatham from left to right: Alyssa Byrd, Paul Cuadros, Susan Levy, Tami Schwerin, and Stephanie Watkins-Cruz.
For something that hasn’t uttered a word – ever – the Confederate monument outside Pittsboro’s historic courthouse has caused quite a stir lately. The
debate over the Confederate monument has tested loyalties and revealed deep
divides in the community over the past few months. Some say it should be
removed, citing issues of racial equality. Others say the statue’s removal
would be akin to erasing history. Monday
night’s Chatham County Board of Commissioners meeting served as another
manifestation of that unrest.
Finally, it’s here. The story you’ve all been waiting for. In March, we asked you all to vote for the question you wanted us to answer the most. It was a tight race, but one question asked by Mary Ann Woehrel came out on top with 37 votes out of 117 total: “What is the county doing to stop the silt pollution coming from the construction on 15-501 next to Fearrington Village?” You know how it goes.
As the Chatham Park development publicly shared plans with the Town of Pittsboro leadership, the development company is trying to even the debate with environmental groups looking to protect the tree population, which they say could be reduced to a minimum under the current plan. Environmental issues are a hot point of debate in the community, with parts of the discussion centering around the issue of tree protection in the Chatham Park development area. Another area of concern is protection of the Haw River. Continuing the back-and-forth of the debate, the Pittsboro Board of Commissioners scheduled a public workshop on March 18 to discuss the Chatham Park Tree Element. Chuck Smith is a representative for Preston Development Company, the development firm behind Chatham Park.