RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane says she wants another term. She delivered her “State of the City” address Friday.
McFarlane says the city has seen an incredible amount of economic success this past year, but she says with growth comes new challenges like traffic and affordable housing. She said at a time where much of the country and the state is divided, she believes Raleigh can be the exception.
“Together we can make sure Raleigh continues to be the city that we love,” said McFarlane.
McFarlane says the City of Oaks has a lot to be proud of.
“Clearly were doing something right; our population continues to grow by 2.3 percent annually,” said McFarlane.
She says in 2016 Raleigh saw more than a four percent increase in employment and she says companies like Citrix and Walk Me have announced hundreds of new job openings.
“The recent addition high speed gigabyte fiber offers our residents more options in high speed internet service than New York City or San Francisco,” she said.
But as the city continues to grow, it also faces new hurdles like traffic. In November the Wake County Transit Referendum passed and McFarlane says the plan will be available for public comment beginning next week.
“We expect to start seeing those improved transit services in 2018,” she said.
Another issue is the lack of affordable housing. McFarlane says the council has developed a plan to partner with local nonprofits to build more affordable housing across the city.
“Growing cities all face the same dilemma the more popular we become the faster we see our housing prices rise,” said McFarlane.
She also says she’s excited about the revitalization of Dorthea Dix Park.
“This park has to come from us it has to feel like Raleigh,” said McFarlane. “This space is so personal to so many of us.”
She says she’s confident the consultant chosen to craft the park’s master plan will engage the entire community throughout the two year process.
“The economic development and financial impact that comes with a park like this can be a huge economic driver for the city,” McFarlane said.
McFarlane has also said she will be running for a fourth term this fall. She says she has a great team and she’s excited to start the master planning process for Dorthea Dix Park and would really like to see the project through.