Jun 19 2017

OPINION: Silence Does Not Indicate Acceptance

Listening is important.

In his column “Silence is Golden,” Mayor Jeff  Wieler took heart in that no speakers showed up to address the Grand Avenue zoning changes adopted by Council at a recent Council meeting.  I think he may be confusing neighborhood absence at the meeting with acceptance. 

Anyone familiar with the process knows how unresponsive the Mayor and some Council members were to neighborhood and community concerns about the initial zoning proposal.  Starting from a “community workshop” that amounted to a presentation by the developer that was followed by tailor-made zoning code, the neighborhood had to push hard to get City Hall to listen to their concerns and consider the General Plan.

With the help of some Council members, the city hired a planner and held workshops with the neighborhood leading to the final zoning code passed Monday night.  After attending many Planning Commission meetings and workshops, many neighbors probably didn’t see the point in appearing before a Council that had not listen to them in the first place.

And speaking of listening, I hope the Mayor will listen to his Planning Commission and reject the the Crown Castle cell tower proposal. 

Garrett Keating, Former Piedmont Council Member

Editors’ Note:  Opinions expressed are those of the author.

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