Rural threat? Officials hear concerns about development
Article from High Point Enterprise regarding Guilford County Commissioners Meeting on 4.17.14
The ongoing concerns from people who live in the incrementally receding areas of rural Guilford County were back in the earshot of elected officials Thursday night.
Residents of rural portions of the county showed up at the Guilford County Board of Commissioners meeting on an array of topics.
Farmer and longtime rural advocate Jimmy Morgan of Colfax, a community north of High Point across Interstate 40, told commissioners he’s concerned about plans for a major development project called Project Haystack. Commissioners and business leaders have been considering developing an industrial park on county land in eastern Guilford County near Gibsonville, a project that’s sparked intense opposition from many neighbors.
Though he lives on the other end of the county, Morgan said he wanted to tell the commissioners he supports those opposing the project, which he termed “corporate welfare.” Morgan said commissioners are using public money, from taxpayers in rural parts of the county, to threaten their agrarian way of life. In addition, the county is inserting itself in a developer’s role that should be left to private business, Morgan said.
Another project that would convert rural land to business use involves High Point. The City Council since last year has undertaken annexing hundreds of acres in southeastern Forsyth County into High Point for a business park development that may include an expansion for Ralph Lauren Corp. The property is in an area known as the Heart of the Triad, which itself was a battleground last decade between developers and advocates for farms and open space.
Also at Thursday’s meeting, dozens of residents of Brown Summit packed the commissioners’ chambers in Greensboro to oppose a planned Dollar General store development in the northern Guilford County town. The residents say the development would aggravate already hazardous traffic conditions at a key intersection in the town along N.C. 150. The residents showed up to ask commissioners to reject a rezoning of 2.2 acres from agricultural to commercial use-general business.
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