Chapel Hill’s elected officials are making efforts to give teenagers opportunities to learn about the community.
Pam Hemminger, Chapel Hill mayor, along with Jessica Anderson, Chapel Hill Town Council official, met with a group of Southern Village teens and parents on October 6 to discuss local topics.
“We need to talk to kids,” expressed Hemminger, and on behalf of the town has demonstrated an interest in developing a teen initiative center.
“Our teens expressed that there’s not a place to hang and they didn’t like [University Mall],” said Hemminger, approaching her fourth year in office. She believes that a teen initiative center could give Chapel Hill teenagers a sense of community and a place to gather.
Hemminger worked with local parents to organize this meeting with the objective of not only hearing from teens but also informing them of local initiatives. Among these are climate action plans, nearby housing development, and most notably, the town’s new “No Right Turn on Red” initiative.
These plans are linked to having direct impacts on the Carrboro High School community in Chapel Hill. Hemminger described the potential development of mixed-income housing just north of the Chatham border near Walmart, which could potentially district more students into Carrboro High School.
Hemminger concluded the meeting with questions from students and parents alike. She mentioned the recent development of tech industries here on Franklin Street as opposed to the 30-45 minute commute of Research Triangle Park.
“Tech is expanding in downtown Chapel Hill,” Hemminger stated. “$10 million has been put into start-up tech on UNC’s campus.”
If you would like to learn about the town’s initiatives or contact the town, visit sustainchapelhill.org for more information.