News and Notes: 19 May 2022

The newly elected Board of Directors met for the first time on Wednesday 18 May 2022 at the Haw Creek Commons.

Since the April election, four committees have met to initiate a range of projects throughout the community. Work has begun on the Masters Park parking area; Clean and Green are hosting their first official litter pick-up on Sunday 5 June (details below); and the Community Outreach Committee is planning a community yard sale for Saturday 4 June (details also below).

At the meeting, a proposed single-use plastics ban was discussed. If you’re interested in learning more, check out the Letter to the Editor in from Anna Alsobrook in the Mountain Xpress, as well as this article about plastics in our local environment.

Community Yard Sale
Saturday 4 June 2022 from 8am – 1pm at the Groce United Methodist Church. Spaces are $15. All proceeds support the Haw Creek Community Association. Please contact Leslie Morris at Lesliermorris@gmail.com for more information.

Litter Clean-Up
Don gloves and boots to meet Marti and the team on Sunday 5 June at 10am in front of Creekside for a litter clean-up. Grabbers and bags will be supplied.

Latest News and Public Meeting Follow-Up

Thanks to the 50+ residents who attended the April 19th annual meeting of the Haw Creek Community Association!

At the meeting, we elected a new Board of Directors and heard from the Mayor about a number of issues affecting the community. Since then, the new Board has hit the ground running: all four program committees have already met (or will meet tonight!); and we have some modest, but significant successes, to report.

Committee reports:

Haw Creek Park Committee: Had its first meeting 4:30pm Monday 5/2 at the picnic shelter in the park. Thanks to Jim Brunner for making this happen. We will update you on their progress in the coming weeks.

Clean & Green Committee: Met for the first time Tuesday, May 2nd at 7pm at Creekside. Owners Anthony & Kim have kindly allowed us to gather there. Christina and Renate co-chaired this first meeting. The committee’s first litter pick-up is scheduled for Sunday 5 June at 10am – meet in the Creekside parking lot and bring your gloves! The event can be found on Facebook.

Community Outreach Committee: Will meet for the first time 6:30pm Thursday, May 5th at the library study room. Thanks to Christina and Pam for organizing this first meeting.

Upcoming Haw Creek events include the Haw Creek Elementary School PTA’s annual plant sale this Saturday from 8am to 3pm at Stillpoint Wellness at the corner of Tunnel Rd. and Beverly Rd. See the PTA’s Facebook page or our post here.

The Association also sponsored the watercolor activity at the Haw Creek Common’s Spring Welcome.

Sidewalks, Greenways & Pedestrian Safety Committee: Had its first meeting at 8am Friday 27 April at Creekside. Full disclosure, this was a previously scheduled meeting with CoA Transportation Director Ken Putnam, and CoA Traffic Engineer (and Haw Creek resident) Chris Cairns. We had ten residents present including board members, Sarah, Meghan, Renate, and myself. Andrew Ross, the owner of The Whale, also joined us and had a most positive attitude.

The purpose of the meeting was to hear the results of a traffic study of Beverly Rd. The City recognizes Haw Creek’s downtown is getting busier with ever increasing interactions between pedestrians and vehicles. The proposal tabled was modest: reduction of speed limit from 30 to 25mph in the area below Avon Rd., and increased signage about pedestrians in the same area. Signage change can happen quickly. Speed reduction takes City Council approval–about two months.

All parties agreed this was only an initial action. We agreed to review again in six months as the area is expected to undergo more changes in the coming year with new sidewalks on New Haw Creek, the new pedestrian bridge, new businesses and a new greenway connecting Beverly and Arco Roads.

The next item for the Sidewalks, Greenways & Pedestrian Safety Committee is to prepare a report outlining options for expanding sidewalks on New Haw Creek and Old Haw Creek Rds., per the results of the community survey indicating strong support for this option.

Finally: since the 4/19 annual meeting, the concern expressed to the mayor about lack of action on the Arco Rd. greenway has resulted in action. The property owners who offered an easement over two years ago report receiving from the City paperwork related to formalizing the greenway easement: a small, but vital, step forward.

Other News

We have been forced to move Facebook page’s due to changes to Facebook policy. Please “like” and “follow” our new page at https://www.facebook.com/HCCABoard, and bear with us as we learn to navigate it!

In related news, the Board would like to establish a Communications Committee to manage this website, our Facebook page, the addition of new members to the contact list, and possibly create a communications strategy. If you’d like to get involved, contact Meghan – MeghanLQ@gmail.com or Chris – Chris@chrispelly.com.

Haw Creek Commons Welcomes Spring

Welcome Spring!

on Saturday 30 April from 11am – 2pm

at Haw Creek Commons, 315 Old Haw Creek Rd.

There will be craft activities and stories for the kids, environmental groups, and plenty of local vendors and food trucks. You can learn about what the Commons and the Community Garden have to offer: they are open to ALL members of our community!

Park at Haw Creek Elementary School and follow the signs to the festival. Limited on-site disabled parking will be available.

Board Elections TOMORROW!

Please plan to provide a warm Haw Creek welcome to Asheville Mayor Esther Manheimer as she addresses the annual meeting of the Haw Creek Community Association, 7pm Tuesday, April 19th in the East Asheville Library. 

Also on the agenda are updates of community improvements – including 4000’ of sidewalk coming to New Haw Creek Rd., plus pedestrian safety improvements for lower Beverly Rd., and a report of the findings from the recent growth and development community survey.

Elections of leaders for the community association is also on the agenda, followed by a dessert social to which all residents are invited.

You can renew or establish your membership association on the night: it’s only $20/ household per year.

We look forward to seeing you!

Public Input Sought RE: Municipal Golf Course

From the City of Asheville:

PRESS RELEASE: City of Asheville seeking public input on  the Municipal Golf Course

The City of Asheville Community & Regional Entertainment Facilities Department is soliciting qualified companies to manage the day to day operations of the municipal golf course.  In February, a Request For Qualifications was issued with a closing date of March 22, 2022.  After companies submit Letters of Interest and Statements of Qualifications, staff will begin negotiation of terms and conditions to ultimately select and contract with the company that submitted the most advantageous offer for the City in relation to the long term well being of the historic course, the neighborhoods in the vicinity and key stakeholders; area golfers.

We want your input.

A public meeting will be held on March 29th in the East Asheville Library meeting room at 6:00 pm.  We are looking for community and stakeholder input to help guide the negotiations and subsequent contract with a new operator or an extension with the current operator Pope Golf LLC.

Unable to attend?  Please complete this SURVEY to provide your input.

Background

The Asheville Municipal Golf Course is owned by the City of Asheville and affectionately known by its patrons as the “Muni.” It is one of the oldest golf courses in Western North Carolina, having opened in 1927. A Donald Ross layout, it measures 6,379 from the championship tees and plays to a par 72. The course is heavily played, with an average of 41,600 starts per calendar year, 20% of which are started by annual passholders. The front nine is flat and wide open, while the back nine is tree-lined, with tight fairways, very hilly, and requires accuracy on every shot. The front nine and back nine are completely different, giving the golfers a wide variety of shot opportunities during their 18 holes of play.  The course was the first integrated golf course in the southeast.

In 2020, a local filmmaker documented a brief history of the course including the history of its prized annual Skyview Tournament.  The documentary aired on PBS and on the Golf Channel and can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/JD6zySv1NM0

For more information about the Asheville Municipal Golf Course, visit https://www.ashevillegc.com/

HCCA News: 21 March 2022

Haw Creek Association
Haw Creek Association

HCCA Board Elections and Public Meeting

The community association is delighted to announce that it’s time for board elections!

From Chris:

After a long COVID-induced hiatus, the Haw Creek Community Association would like to welcome back our neighbors and friends. Our first event is the annual meeting of the association on Tuesday, April 19th at 7pm in the community room of the new East Asheville Library. 

On the agenda is election of the 12-member Board of Directors; updates on community improvements; report of findings from the recent growth and development survey; plus opportunities for public input. 

A dessert social will follow the meeting. Although not required, participants are encouraged to bring a bragging-rights dessert. 

All Haw Creek residents are welcome at the meeting; however, voting is limited to members of the community association. Any resident of Haw Creek may become a member of the community association. Sign-ups available at this meeting or online. Annual membership is $20 per household

Interested in serving on the Board of Directors? There will be an informational meeting Tuesday, April 5th at 7pm at Haw Creek Commons, 315 Old Haw Creek Rd. Questions? Call Chris Pelly, (828) 231-3704.

With growth being an on-going feature of living in Asheville and Haw Creek, the goal of the Haw Creek Community Association is to provide a forum for residents to shape our future and build community.

 

New Haw Creek Rd. Sidewalk Consultation

The City of Asheville will host an online, public meeting in relation to the planned sidewalk along New Haw Creek Rd. on Monday March 28 from 5:30 – 7:00pm.

This project was endorsed by the residents of our community many years ago, and is finally getting underway.

Proposal

from the City of Asheville

“The City proposes to construct nearly one mile of new sidewalk along New Haw Creek Road from Beverly Road to Bell Road following a “best fit” alignment.  At the south end, the proposed sidewalk follows along the west side of New Haw Creek Road. North of Dogwood Grove the alignment shifts to the east side, utilizing a mid-block signalized crosswalk with ADA compliant ramps and curb cuts for safe access across New Haw Creek Road.

Additional crosswalks and ramps are also proposed throughout the project. Connecting to the existing sidewalk west of Beverly Road, the project expands the City’s sidewalk network, and creates greater opportunities for the surrounding community to walk to local schools and to Charlie Bullman Park at the north end of the project.”

(Emphasis added.)

Haw Creek residents are encouraged to participate in the meeting.

 

Save the Date: Haw Creek Commons Spring Festival

The Haw Creek Commons exists to bring together people in our community and across Asheville. Each year they host spring and autumn festivals to facilitate that goal!

The spring festival is scheduled for Saturday April 30 from 11am – 2pm.

HCCA News: March 2022

A few neighborhood updates during this time of ongoing turmoil –

Sidewalk Update

With regard to the New Haw Creek sidewalk we’re all eager to see built, our contact at the City of Asheville states:

“Since the property owners along New Haw Creek Road have been contacted regarding any needed easements, we have been working on putting together a Community Engagement Meeting.  We have some draft materials prepared and under review.  We expect everything to be finalized and the meeting to occur remotely by the end of March 2022.”

In terms of sidewalks and greenways throughout Asheville, the city is entering their “final round of public engagement” with regard to strategic planning around sidewalks and greenways. They encourage all residents to participate in the Close the GAP public survey.

Haw Creek Green and Clean

An update from our amazing, doggedly determined, Renate:

Brush Collection

We’re all starting to tackle spring clean-ups in our yards, and brush piles will be part of our neighborhood landscape for weeks.  Our Asheville Sanitation folks collect 10,000 tons of brush, tree limbs and shrub trimmings, annually. I’m always stunned by this number.  And, as I look at some of the current brush piles around, I see that some don’t conform with our brush collection instructions, so here they are as a reminder:

  • Brush/limbs need to be cut into 4′ sections, no more than 6″ in diameter. Sanitation   will NOT collect otherwise
  • Any THORNY vegetation needs to be in 2′ sections.
  • Construction-type materials/lumber will NOT be collected by the City and will just sit at the roadside forever if you leave it there hoping for pickup.  You need to take it to the landfill.

Remember: Brush collection is only for brush, sticks, and other yard waste!

Litter

Five members of the “Litter Brigade” did a thorough clean-up along the chain link fence from our entrance to 240 in mid-February, and there was plenty to collect! DOT picked up the many bags we filled up.

We want to aim for a litter-free Haw Creek and appreciate so many of you who have offered to help!  We hope that we can organize regular litter sweeps this year without COVID limiting these plans!

 

Road Repairs

Chad Young, our current DOT Maintenance Supervisor, responded to Haw Creek Green and Clean’s request to repair/improve the pull-off at our main entrance to the neighborhood, which had become very eroded and washed out. It is now safe for utility vehicles pulling off there for repairs, for food pantry access, litter clean-ups etc. Thank you, Chad!

DOT also did a great job clearing and sweeping a long section of the storm drain gutter along the sidewalk on New Haw Creek Rd., which was clogged with years of accumulated dirt and weeds.

Drainage Ditch Maintenance

The Asheville Stormwater Department responded to our request to “rejuvenate” the storm drainage ditch along Bethesda Road at the Haw Creek Elementary School property.  It was totally clogged with leaves and debris: not useful as a drainage ditch.

Tony Chapman of our Stormwater Division sent a crew out to fix the problem – thank you, Tony!

Water run-off is now flowing in the ditch rather than the road!

Food Scraps Composting 

The Asheville Sanitation Department has started a pilot program to collect and compost food waste instead of sending it to the landfill where it presents plenty of problems.

Renate’s been taking all my food scraps to a little collection shed at Stephens-Lee Recreation Center.  She’s been in contact with the folks at Sanitation who are developing this new – and hopefully successful –  composting program for Asheville, to have Haw Creek be “in the running” for being another “drop-off” location, knowing that there are many committed people in our community to support this program.  Let’s hope for the best!

 

Greenworks Replaces Haw Creek Trash Trout

“On Friday, January 28, Asheville GreenWorks installed a new Trash Trout™ Jr. litter collection device on Haw Creek, replacing one that was vandalized last March and kicking off a statewide effort to keep trash out of Carolina waterways.

“The Haw Creek Trash Trout is one of ten that Asheville GreenWorks currently maintains on WNC waterways, but in March 2021, thieves cut away and stole the aluminium pontoons that keep the Trash Trout afloat.

“When we posted about the vandalism, we received a huge outcry from this community. We were amazed so many people stepped up with donations to make things right. Thank you to everyone who donated!”

Copies from the Greenworks newsletter

The City of Asheville Supports Migratory Birds

As part of the Audubon Society’s Lights Out campaign, the city pledges to turn off unnecessary lighting during spring and fall migration, and encourages all businesses, residents and building managers to do the same.

Bright city lights can disorient migrating birds, often leading to fatal building collisions. These deaths are one of the leading causes for the loss of nearly 3 billion birds in North America since 1970.

Blue Ridge Audubon and UNCA Audubon formed the Coalition for a Bird-Friendly Asheville and together have been working with other community organizations on this initiative. They are thrilled that this hard work and cooperation has paid off!

Please join the Audubon Society in congratulating the Mayor and City Council for taking this step; and remember to turn off your outside lights!

https://www.birdsafeavl.org/

Save the Date: Haw Creek Commons Spring Welcome

Join the Haw Creek Commons on Saturday 30 April from 11am – 2pm for their spring festival. The Commons is now looking for vendors, with an emphasis on local makers and creatives; as well as environmental groups that wish to provide information and resources to our community.

They also need volunteers! To get involved, please contact Morgan Welch, Community Storyteller, at mwelch@hawcreekcommons.com or 828 220-5527 Ext.103.