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Laurels: Keep making progress on Salisbury Greenway

Laurel to continued progress on making the Salisbury Greenway a complete loop and connecting parts of the city.

The Salisbury City Council last week gave Manager Lane Bailey the OK on contracts for the greenway in the Grants Creek area. There, two projects will connect Catawba College to the section in the Meadowbrook neighborhood as well as build a new section along the side of the Salisbury VA National Cemetery annex.

The first part, which will build a bridge over Grants Creek at Catawba College, is expected to be complete by August. The second, which will connect the Meadowbrook neighborhood to Kelsey Scott Park by building the new section, may not start until 2023.

Both projects can’t happen soon enough. As many of us have learned or rediscovered in the previous year, you can solve a lot of problems by taking a long walk.

A map on the city’s website shows the Salisbury Greenway including parts of Statesville Boulevard, which is not a particularly enjoyable place to take a leisurely walk, and Brenner Avenue, which is devoid of sidewalks until West Horah Street. After the second of the two phases is complete, meanwhile, Livingstone and Catawba colleges would be connected by a walkable path and the West End would be connected to Country Club Hills.

Laurel to the town of Landis for an impressive public notice that will serve its citizens well.

Often, public notices are fairly bland — black and white text. In preparation for a public hearing about a new land development ordinance and zoning map, the town on Thursday published a full-age advertisement on page 10A of the Post with large font text and a full, color map of the zoning districts. At the bottom of the page, there’s a legend to show what different colors mean.

The map will be beneficial for Landis residents as well as current and future business owners and a handy tool to refer back to during debate about the zoning changes.

For people hoping to attend the hearing, it’s scheduled May 10 at 6 p.m. in Landis Town Hall.

Laurel to Rowan-Salisbury Superintendent Tony Watlington for diving into student demographic data and publicizing it after his first 100 days in office.

During the Rowan-Salisbury Schools Board of Education meeting April 12, Watlington presented data showing student enrollment has declined from about 20,000 in the 2010-2011 school year to 18,311 in the current year. The school system also is seeing a drop in its percentage of white students even as the number has remained steady in the county at large.

People might quickly chalk it up to charter schools or the relatively large population of home school students in the county, but Watlington said he wants to figure out why white families are leaving the public school system and how to respond.

“We need to pay attention to it. More importantly, we need to do something about it. I would say the same thing if we were losing high numbers of Black children or Hispanic children,” he said.

The best model for public education, Watlington said, is “the same model that Dr. Martin Luther King wanted and that President Lyndon Johnson wanted: an integrated public education system.”

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