On March 6, the Greensboro City Council held a regular, biweekly meeting, where various topics concerning the city were discussed such as transportation and safety issues. Starting the meeting was the celebration of the success of the International Civil Rights Museum.
Since its founding in 2010, the International Civil Rights Museum, ICRM for short, has been a must-see attraction in Greensboro. Over 300,000 people have visited the museum since its inception, and the results are evident not only in the museum, but all of downtown Greensboro. The museum has attracted outside investors, $36 million in total, to downtown Greensboro in an effort to renovate businesses and restore the downtown’s beauty. This has led to the startup of several businesses and thousands of customers, allowing the area to bring in millions each year.
Regarding the ICRM, the museum recently finished repaying a $1.5 million loan given to them by the city in 2013. The purpose of the loan was to restore F.W. Woolworth’s and allow the museum access to more and better resources. After only a few years, the museum has payed the city back and consistently maintains an optimal financial status.
John Swaine, CEO of the ICRM, spoke briefly on the museum and gave thanks to the council. “FW Woolworth’s and the ICRM are in the top 3 of 14 sites in the newly inaugurated Civil Rights trail…and TripAdvisor has rated the institution as the best attraction to visit in the Piedmont Triad for the last five years. I give much thanks to the Greensboro City Council for allowing us to accomplish our goals and appreciate all of their help and cooperation.”
Following the ICRM discussion was the public agenda, giving all citizens the chance to voice their concerns over problems they have encountered. First among the concerns was SCAT, or the Specialized Community Area Transportation. This organization provides transportation to those who are physically and/or mentally disabled. Three speakers voiced their problems with SCAT, including inconsiderate staff, expensive prices and inconvenient pickup times.
Next on the public agenda was the traffic situation at Page High School. There are over 400 students using a car everyday, to and from school, which has created traffic and numerous dangerous encounters for those inside and outside the vehicles. Several students and parents spoke on the issue, including a Page student who accidentally hit another student with her car and gave the victim a concussion and other minor injuries. To address the issue, the speakers all advocated for more crosswalks around the school and better car-rider lines.
The last item on the public agenda was given by a Grimsley High School student in response to the recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Since the shooting, several Grimsley students have spread rumors that there are guns on campus and there is a serious threat. Fortunately, these were lies, but this still caused many students to be upset and afraid to come to school. To combat the fear, a Grimsley student is selling wristbands to make a stand against gun violence. The wristband event will run until next week, and all proceeds will be given to the victims of the Parkland shooting.
Concluding the meeting were updates given by each council member. Among them were the announcements of a few local events and the recent success of UNCG’s men’s basketball team winning the Southern Conference championship.