New Year, New Mayors: Chapel Hill Mayor Jess Anderson shares goals, vision for 2024

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Tuesday, January 2, 2024
Chapel Hill Mayor shares goals, vision for 2024
Several Triangle towns and cities are starting off 2024 with new mayors at the helm.

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) -- Several Triangle towns and cities are starting off 2024 with new mayors at the helm, including Chapel Hill, where Mayor Jess Anderson takes the seat after winning with nearly 59% of the vote.

In a one-on-one interview with ABC11, she shared her goals and vision for 2024.

"Growth is always a key issue for us," Anderson said. "We also have some big capital projects that we know that we need to plan and kind of get financing in place for rewriting all of our land use rules so our land use management ordinance, so that's a really big kind of large project that it can be hard to know when to engage and how."

The town continues to transform as one of the fastest growing places in the Triangle. Anderson said one of the projects she's excited about involves the Greenway, where she envisions more communities.

"Often we talk about doing housing or parks or greenways or nature, and I'm saying we have to do both and we have to do them in really excellent ways so that people who live here, I think will be happy with the outcome," Anderson said.

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Chapel Hill is one of five municipalities welcoming a new mayor.

In Durham, Leonardo Williams succeeds Elaine O'Neal, who did not seek another term, while Mark Bell and Kyle Shipp became the next mayors of Hillsborough and Pittsboro.

Barbara Foushee is Carrboro's first black woman mayor and with the new role, she shared some of her goals for 2024 that include completing the hiring process for Town Manager and Town Clerk and better infrastructure.

"Working through a racial equity lens which will open up a new set of possibilities and will help us reimagine how we approach issues and find equitable solutions that work for housing affordability, community safety, supporting our local businesses, climate action/environmental justice, transportation, storm water management and more," Foushee said in a statement.

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Chapel Hill is balancing growth while trying to prevent becoming a sprawling community, much like many of its not-so-distant neighbors.