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Discuss how growth in the city limits of Triangle cities relates to the other large state cities

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dpk created this chart in another topic which led that topic to change and bring up a great new topic of how growth trends of city limit population can relate and compare to the amount of land North Carolina's largest cities annex into their limits.

Are the Triangle's cities growing on their own are are they expanding only due to land being annexed into the city limits.

Let's see how the Triangle's cities related to Charlotte, Greensboro and Winston-Salem. Also, is it right to say cities like Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Milwaukee, Detroit, St. Louis, Birmingham, Cleveland are shrinking or cities like Atlanta and Miami are growing when all of these cities have maintained their city limit sizes at the same size for over 30 plus years?

dpk's chart

148de39.jpg

Source: US Census

Winston-Salem

1920: 48,395

1930: 75,274

1940: 79,815

1950: 87,811

1960: 111,135

1970: 133,683

1980: 131,885

1990: 143,485

2000: 185,776

2007: 215,348

Charlotte

1900: 19,000

1910: 34,000

1920: 70,983

1930: 85,864

1940: 100,899

1950: 134,042

1960: 201,564

1970: 241,178

1980: 315,474

1990: 395,934

2000: 540,828

2007: 671,588

Raleigh

1900: 13,643

1910: 19,218

1920: 24,418

1930: 37,379

1940: 46,879

1950: 65,679

1960: 93,931

1970: 122,830

1980: 150,255

1990: 207,951

2000: 276,093

2009: 385,507 (January 1, 2009)

http://www.raleighnc.gov/publications/Plan...anuary_2009.pdf

Greensboro

1900: 10,035

1910: 15,895

1920: 19,861

1930: 53,569

1940: 59,319

1950: 74,389

1960: 119,574

1970: 144,076

1980: 155,642

1990: 183,521

2000: 223,891

2008: 258,671 (April 1, 2008)

http://www.greensboro-nc.gov/departments/P...tyfactsheet.htm

Durham

1900: 6,679

1910: 18,241

1920: 21,719

1930: 52,037

1940: 60,195

1950: 73,368

1960: 84,642

1970: 95,438

1980: 100,831

1990: 136,611

2000: 187,035

2007: 217,847

_________________________

This is from a report from year 2000

https://www.brookings.edu/es/urban/ncappendix.pdf

The city of Charlotte grew by 206,004 - capturing 51 percent of the regions growth over that time period. 56 percent of the city'spopulation growth -114,590 -occurred through annexation.

Greensboro has annexed 42.61 square miles since 1980, growing to a size of 102.98 square miles-a land area growth of 70.6 percent. The city added slightly more land in the 90

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I have another version of that chart with a secondary axis on the right with annexed land in acreage, but I'm waiting to see if Charlotte's City Planning Dept replies to an email.

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NC is just now becoming a metro dominated state. Looking at various maps you can really see the difference between the "city" dominated states and the "metro" dominated states. I do wonder would half of the citizens that were annexed by Charlotte wanted to become their own city. Or were just happy living unincorporated. Then maybe your questions would be answered and the NC map might look like a metro Chicago/Atlanta map with literally hundreds of smaller municipalities all surrounding the core city .Not on that scale just yet of course but in shape and form. I think the ideaology of the city holding the power and not the county plays a huge role also. Just by reading post here on UP it seems easier to annex than to incorporate.

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NC is just now becoming a metro dominated state. Looking at various maps you can really see the difference between the "city" dominated states and the "metro" dominated states. I do wonder would half of the citizens that were annexed by Charlotte wanted to become their own city. Or were just happy living unincorporated. Then maybe your questions would be answered and the NC map might look like a metro Chicago/Atlanta map with literally hundreds of smaller municipalities all surrounding the core city .Not on that scale just yet of course but in shape and form. I think the ideaology of the city holding the power and not the county plays a huge role also. Just by reading post here on UP it seems easier to annex than to incorporate.

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NC is just now becoming a metro dominated state. Looking at various maps you can really see the difference between the "city" dominated states and the "metro" dominated states. I do wonder would half of the citizens that were annexed by Charlotte wanted to become their own city. Or were just happy living unincorporated. Then maybe your questions would be answered and the NC map might look like a metro Chicago/Atlanta map with literally hundreds of smaller municipalities all surrounding the core city .Not on that scale just yet of course but in shape and form. I think the ideaology of the city holding the power and not the county plays a huge role also. Just by reading post here on UP it seems easier to annex than to incorporate.

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NC is just now becoming a metro dominated state. Looking at various maps you can really see the difference between the "city" dominated states and the "metro" dominated states. I do wonder would half of the citizens that were annexed by Charlotte wanted to become their own city. Or were just happy living unincorporated. Then maybe your questions would be answered and the NC map might look like a metro Chicago/Atlanta map with literally hundreds of smaller municipalities all surrounding the core city .Not on that scale just yet of course but in shape and form. I think the ideaology of the city holding the power and not the county plays a huge role also. Just by reading post here on UP it seems easier to annex than to incorporate.

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To answer your question...Pittsburgh, Cincy and Cleveland Metro areas have been declining as well. I am a Triangle native who currently resides in Cleveland. I am so glad that the Triangle is not an area of 100 little cities. Can you imagine Briar Creek, Wakefield, Treyburn, etc. being separate cities? Well that's what exists in Cleveland and is part of the region's problem. Some cities have merged school systems and police forces but more needs to be done.

I continue to hear the Triangle described as polycentric area but aren't most cities polycentric. New York, LA, Atlanta Metro, etc. Atlanta does not have one business district. There's Downtown, Midtown, Buckhead, Perimeter Center and Alpharetta with smaller office parks spread around. These are also entertainment and shopping districts of various scales.

The Triangle is afraid to develop RTP as a community core. It is possible for our business, entertainment and shopping districts to have different personalities. In general, people don't want to go to the same place every weekend for entertainment or eating. Sometimes people don't want the standard shopping experience of a Southpointe or Crabtree. Technology companies have different requirements from Law, Accounting and Financial firms so why not have areas that cater to and provide amenities to these different groups. I'm listing these examples but I hope you all get the idea.

It is time for Raleigh and Durham to think more collectively in order to be truly nationally and globally competitive. I currently live in a city that was great up until 30 years ago. I will simplify but a lack of forward thinking is what halted the progress of Cleveland.

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I do wonder would half of the citizens that were annexed by Charlotte wanted to become their own city. Or were just happy living unincorporated. Then maybe your questions would be answered and the NC map might look like a metro Chicago/Atlanta map with literally hundreds of smaller municipalities all surrounding the core city .Not on that scale just yet of course but in shape and form. I think the ideaology of the city holding the power and not the county plays a huge role also. Just by reading post here on UP it seems easier to annex than to incorporate.

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With Charlotte, Raleigh, and probably most other NC cities, the vast majority of people living in "annexed" areas moved there *post*-annexation or bought in to subdivisions on the fringe fully expecting to be annexed by the larger adjacent city.

As other posters have already stated, as "bad" as annexation seems, the benefits of a unified water, sewer, police, fire, schools and other services is a lot better than a bunch of smaller muncipalities a) providing a lot of that on their own and b) competing with neighboring towns.

I lived in north-central NJ for a few years and it is that duplication of services every few miles that makes the taxes and cost of living so high, in addition to being an exurb of NYC.

Charlotte's banking/former US Mint and the Triangle's universities/state government enabled them to become focus points. Sprawl has pushed things too far out instead of up to be sustainable, but that is slowly fixing itself though increased investment in mass transit and even somewhat denser suburbs with townhouses replacing the now non-existent new 2 bedroom single family detached house since the mid/late 80s, if not earlier.

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Raleigh has nearly run out of land to annex. It's already bumping against the boundaries of Durham, Morrisville, Cary, Garner, Knightdale, Wake Forest, etc. It's conceivable that Raleigh could annex north of I-540 all the way into Glanville County, but that seems unlikely.

To keep growing in population -- and all the powers-at-be in Raleigh want to continue growing -- the only answer is upward, not outward. That's why everything we hear out of the City planning department is for higher density.

Problem is, it's a free market. All those higher-density homes in Raleigh will be competing with low-density suburban developments in the towns outside Raleigh -- and especially in the non-municipal areas of eastern Wake County. Raleigh's percentage share of the population of Wake County has been slowly but steadily falling for a long time. I suspect this will continue, the push for a higher-density Raleigh notwithstanding.

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Raleigh has nearly run out of land to annex. It's already bumping against the boundaries of Durham, Morrisville, Cary, Garner, Knightdale, Wake Forest, etc. It's conceivable that Raleigh could annex north of I-540 all the way into Glanville County, but that seems unlikely.

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My point, and I believe it's a valid observation, is that how quickly Raleigh's new strategy of vertical growth -- instead of annexation -- will bear fruit is a matter of conjecture. As a former resident of Atlanta proper (not the suburbs), I've seen how long it can take for vertical growth to bear fruit. In Atlanta, it was about 30 years from a commitment by government until the population inside the fixed city limits actually began to increase.

Charlotte's numbers look much better, but Charlotte has had the luxury of being able to grow vertically and horizontally at the same time. That's not Raleigh's opportunity going forward.

Can Raleigh wait 30 years, or even 15, for vertical growth to put significant numbers on the scoreboard? I wonder. Vertical growth requires unwavering political will and great political stability to sustain the necessary investments in infrastructure over a long period of time. Atlanta had both the will and the stability. Mayor Meeker has the former, but I'm not sure he has the latter. He would be wise to quit annexing more Republican territory in north Raleigh; he may already have annexed too much of it.

What worries me is that Raleigh doesn't appear to have a Plan B. Mayor Meeker has put all his eggs in one basket, vertical growth. Other cities like Nashville and Jacksonville haven't precluded vertical growth, but they hedged their bets with city-county consolidation. Unfortunately, the current hostility over the WCPSS board -- where the battle lines basically correspond to the Raleigh city boundaries -- have poisoned that well.

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Raleigh has a good amount of area to annex still, though not as much as Durham from the maps I'm looking at.

Raleigh's key is just not north (afterall...Falls Watershed needs to keep low density). But Raleigh has a good amount of space to the southeast (between Knightdale and Garner) as well as southwest (between Cary and Garner). Much of the land down towards Lake Wheeler also has to have a low density for watershed reasons, but there tons of upper-class subdivisions down there that could bring in quite a lot of tax dollars to the city. And since those folks are getting the benefits of just being outside of the city with easy commutes to their jobs in downtown, I don't have much sympathy if they are annexed.

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Raleigh has a good amount of area to annex still, though not as much as Durham from the maps I'm looking at.

Raleigh's key is just not north (afterall...Falls Watershed needs to keep low density). But Raleigh has a good amount of space to the southeast (between Knightdale and Garner) as well as southwest (between Cary and Garner). Much of the land down towards Lake Wheeler also has to have a low density for watershed reasons, but there tons of upper-class subdivisions down there that could bring in quite a lot of tax dollars to the city. And since those folks are getting the benefits of just being outside of the city with easy commutes to their jobs in downtown, I don't have much sympathy if they are annexed.

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Look at Wakefield, which Raleigh annexed. It's 15 miles from Wakefield to downtown Raleigh. Basically, this was all about capturing property taxes -- which are lucrative. Every Wakefield home on the west side of Falls of Neuse Road sells for $2 million plus, some as high as $5 million. There are a handful of $200K homes on the east side of Falls, but most of them are in the $400K to $1M range. The only comparable concentrations of wealth in Wake County are White Oak in Raleigh (ITB) and a few subdivisions in Cary like Prestonwood.

How many of these Wakefield folks work in downtown Raleigh? Not many, I'd wager. Thus, they want a 5-lane New Falls of Neuse Road from Wake Forest to I-540, so they can zip to their jobs in Research Triangle Park. And that's exactly what they're going to get, as a quid pro quo. The contractor's price tag is $21 million alone.

How many of these Wakefield folks will vote for progressive candidates for Mayor and the City Council? Not many.

Was it smart for Raleigh to annex Wakefield? In the short run, heck yeah. All those tax revenues came in immediately. Over the long run, I've got to believe that the majority of Wakefield residents will be a thorn in the side of Mayor Meeker and his supporters forever. Raleigh should have allowed Wake Forest to swallow Wakefield, which is only 5 miles away. Instead, Raleigh got a neighborhood of people who generally don't care about downtown, are likely to vote that way, and who have the wealth to persuade others to vote likewise.

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There are a handful of $200K homes on the east side of Falls, but most of them are in the $400K to $1M range. The only comparable concentrations of wealth in Wake County are White Oak in Raleigh (ITB) and a few subdivisions in Cary like Prestonwood.

Over the long run, I've got to believe that the majority of Wakefield residents will be a thorn in the side of Mayor Meeker and his supporters forever. Raleigh should have allowed Wake Forest to swallow Wakefield, which is only 5 miles away. Instead, Raleigh got a neighborhood of people who generally don't care about downtown, are likely to vote that way, and who have the wealth to persuade others to vote likewise.

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I am not convinced that Raleigh has adopted a vertical growth strategy. Dan Douglas knew this and left for greener pastures and more willing ears it seems (Dan, feel free to chime in!). Mitch Silver has had to temper his dreams and David Diaz and the DRA are more cheerleader than proponent of any particular strategy regarding growth even in downtown. At this point Raleigh seems to be attempting to have its suburban cake and downtown cake at the same time. That's probably the best balance....keep using downtown to subsidize the 'burbs, and the burbs stay stay happy as long as their taxes and water bills are low.

As a well studied professional of water rates, I am guessing that Wakefield is not self supporting on the cost/benefit tax scale (they are nowhere close with water). Those high incomes are spread across large lots.....the value per acre out there is no where near downtown. Residential rarely is self supporting...that's why tax rates are higher in smaller towns....as are water and sewer etc....the commercial and industrial base are the engines....As far as I care, let the majority of people move to the small communities....I'll stay here and let BB&T, Bank of America, North Hills, Crabtree etc. keep my tax bill low. A growth boundary between Raleigh and it's little sisters might be a good move though I have thought all the ramifications through....

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The ratio of Republicans to Democrats in Wake County Precinct 19-15 is 3:2. Also in Wakefield, the ratio for Precinct 19-14 is even higher, 2:1. You can get the data for yourself at the Wake County Board of Elections website.

2000 online Census data at the level of census tracts is incomplete for Wakefield because the development was still being built out at the time. But you can find median home prices by zip code, and that's a pretty good proxy. Of zip codes in Raleigh, the two highest for median home prices are 27614 ($280K) and 27608 ($270K). The only other zip code with a median home price above $200K is 27615, and barely so ($203K). In other words, 27614 and 27608 are way out in front of the rest. Most of Wakefield is in 27614; 27608 includes the White Oak area from Five Points to Anderson.

If you're going to argue,do it with data instead of personal criticisms.

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The ratio of Republicans to Democrats in Wake County Precinct 19-15 is 3:2. Also in Wakefield, the ratio for Precinct 19-14 is even higher, 2:1. You can get the data for yourself at the Wake County Board of Elections website.

2000 online Census data at the level of census tracts is incomplete for Wakefield because the development was still being built out at the time. But you can find median home prices by zip code, and that's a pretty good proxy. Of zip codes in Raleigh, the two highest for median home prices are 27614 ($280K) and 27608 ($270K). The only other zip code with a median home price above $200K is 27615, and barely so ($203K). In other words, 27614 and 27608 are way out in front of the rest. Most of Wakefield is in 27614; 27608 includes the White Oak area from Five Points to Anderson.

If you're going to argue,do it with data instead of personal criticisms.

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The ratio of Republicans to Democrats in Wake County Precinct 19-15 is 3:2. Also in Wakefield, the ratio for Precinct 19-14 is even higher, 2:1. You can get the data for yourself at the Wake County Board of Elections website.

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The ratio of Republicans to Democrats in Wake County Precinct 19-15 is 3:2. Also in Wakefield, the ratio for Precinct 19-14 is even higher, 2:1. You can get the data for yourself at the Wake County Board of Elections website.

2000 online Census data at the level of census tracts is incomplete for Wakefield because the development was still being built out at the time. But you can find median home prices by zip code, and that's a pretty good proxy. Of zip codes in Raleigh, the two highest for median home prices are 27614 ($280K) and 27608 ($270K). The only other zip code with a median home price above $200K is 27615, and barely so ($203K). In other words, 27614 and 27608 are way out in front of the rest. Most of Wakefield is in 27614; 27608 includes the White Oak area from Five Points to Anderson.

If you're going to argue,do it with data instead of personal criticisms.

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The ratios are the same. And by the way, 27690 and 95 are special zip codes that don't really exist, so any home data associated with them is spurious. 27690 is the Netflix distribution center; 27695 is NCSU.

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Are you referring to that Republican/Democrat nonsense? Again, what does that have to do with the subject at hand?

Stop throwing up smoke screens, and focus on Raleigh's being the 45th largest city in the country.

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