'Take a more aggressive approach:' Raleigh moves to crack down on Glenwood South rowdiness

Joel Brown Image
Thursday, September 16, 2021
Raleigh moves to crack down on Glenwood South rowdiness
City staff said more than 1,600 cars were cited for parking violations over the summer, many for being in neighborhoods permitted for residents only.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Glenwood South is bouncing back from the pandemic.

The city's entertainment district has seen $1.3 billion in investment since 2015. But, there are some drawbacks to that success -- just ask neighbors to the north and east.

Thursday through Sunday night on Glenwood South is a party: Bars, clubs and restaurants are packed; Sidewalks are jammed with young revelers. Lots of money is spent. Business owners are happy. Nearby neighbors say that's a good thing.

But they've got big problem with what happens when the bars close at 2 a.m. And they're filling up the voice mail of their Raleigh City Council representatives about it.

"They don't want folks walking into their neighborhoods and passing out on their lawns, peeing in their yards, parking and blocking their streets and creating ruckus til 2,3, 4 sometimes 5, 6:00 in the morning," said Raleigh city councilor Stormie Forte, whose district includes Glenwood South.

Gordon Brown is one of the hundreds of nearby neighbors in support of Raleigh's new efforts to curb the rowdiness.

"Yeah, sure. I'm an old grumpy guy," Brown said with a smile.

In an update at Tuesday's city council work session, city staff said from June 1 to the end of August that over 1,600 cars were cited for parking violations -- many revelers leaving their cars in neighborhoods permitted for residents only. There were 94 complaints for noise. Raleigh police seized 22 guns.

"There have been isolated incidents of gunfire," Brown said. "A neighbor actually found a pistol in her front walk. That was about three years ago."

RPD showed city council the police blotter from Glenwood South from June to August. It showed 227 criminal charges. Police said of the 56 simple assaults -- almost all of them involved an intoxicated suspect.

City Council now working to find the balance of preserving quality of life for the people who live here without killing off an economic driver fueled by the people who party here.

"We've got to take a more aggressive approach for our residents," Forte said.

At large council member Jonathan Melton added, "I want to make sure that we're being very careful to address these very real concerns about safety and nuisances while also making sure that we don't quell the attractiveness aspects of Glenwood South."

Some of the ideas council bounced around in its meeting included allowing businesses to hire more off-duty police officers; expanding some of the sidewalks along Glenwood to ease congestion; Councilman David Cox suggested boosting parking fines from $30 to $100.

City staff will come back to council with policy proposals in a few weeks.

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