Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Vow That Enlisted An Outburst

Usually the Durham City Manager is pretty stoic, but he was visibly cheered a few days ago when applause erupted during one of several  confirmation vows to the community taken by participants at the second annual “Marry Durham” street festival in the NoCO District.

That particular applause was in appreciation for the repaving of Durham streets, maintenance of which had been neglected and is now being rapidly returned to standard thanks to voter-approved bonds.

Residents will be even more expressive when the visual impression created by maintenance of roadsides, medians and right-of-ways is similarly restored to best-practice standards.

Detailed under “Roadway Image,” this element is part of “Community Character,” Chapter 4 of the plan that overarches both the City and County of Durham and their respective strategic and agency tactical plans.

Standing just at the periphery of that crowd that was cheering on the City Manager a few days ago was a booth for Keep Durham Beautiful, a non-profit whose management is embedded in Durham City General Services, the agency that will need much better funding if roadsides are to receive similar cheers in the future.

Every year Durham residents’ perceptions of roadside maintenance are benchmarked in two ways.  One is a scientific, anonymous opinion survey of residents of both the city and county.  Another way is an eyes-on Index of litter and other forms of neglect conducted by resident volunteers and coordinated by Keep Durham Beautiful.

As can be seen by clicking on each of the links in this sentence, both the Index and the opinion survey illustrate that this is an area both the City and County must improve if they are to meet the extremely high expectations of residents in this regard.

Click here to receive details about or to volunteer to participate in the 2012 Index which will be conducted on April 19th.

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