Trees replaced in Concord

The city is cutting down seven dying trees in the planting strips along Union Street North and is working with the Residents of Historic Concord neighborhood group to replace them.

David Ratchford, Concord buildings and grounds director, said the trees must be removed because they pose a threat to cars, homes and pedestrians.

The neighborhood group is working to secure permission to plant replacement North American elm trees in homeowners' yards, because the trees probably won't do well in the planting strip, Ratchford said. The city's arborist will select the locations.

The city will supply the trees, and the neighborhood group will hire a nursery to plant and maintain the trees for one year, Ratchford said.

Concord will also plant white dogwood trees in the planting strip and remove a few crape myrtles that were planted after Hurricane Hugo and aren't doing well, he said.

Cutting started Tuesday and will finish by Wednesday, weather permitting.

Crews are grinding the stumps, removing the debris and filling the holes with dirt.

The new North American elms and dogwoods will be planted in October.

Originally, all the trees on Union Street North were elms, Ratchford said in a blog on the city's website. Those trees were lost in a Dutch elm disease outbreak sometime around the turn of the last century, he said.

The new trees are resistant to Dutch elm disease and to elm blight, Ratchford said.

"We will plant Cabarrus County native stock white dogwood trees in the planting strip, as close to the removed tree locations as practical," he said.

City staffers have met individually with each homeowner and with the neighborhood group to discuss the plans.

The city also submitted the project to the city's Historic District Commission and received the required certificate of appropriateness, Ratchford said.

Details: 704-920-5380;

Learn bus changes at open houses

The RIDER Transportation System will have two public meetings July 22 to receive public ideas and comments on bus route changes proposed to take effect when the new transit center opens at 3600 Ridge Ave.

The meetings will be 3 to 5 p.m. in the Kannapolis Train Station and 6 to 8 p.m. in the rotunda of the Cabarrus County Governmental Center in Concord.

RIDER staff will be available to answer questions and provide information.

Details: 704-920-7433;

Hearing on Statesville development code

The Statesville City Council will have a public hearing at 7 p.m. July 19 on the city's proposed Unified Development Code.

The code puts all regulations and ordinances governing development in Statesville into one document. It includes changes to the city's sign regulations, shopping center development, tree canopies, landscaping restrictions and setback guidelines.

The city has spent several years developing the code, which will be used to guide future growth.

The hearing will be in the city council chambers of City Hall, 227 S. Center St.

View the proposed changes at by clicking on "UDC."

Details: Sherry Ashley, 704-878-3539.

Offer input on Iredell greenways

At two public workshops this week, you can offer your thoughts on a master plan for trails, greenways and conservation corridors in Iredell County.

The county and Love Valley, Union Grove, Harmony, Mooresville, Troutman and Statesville are developing the master plan for the Carolina Thread Trail, a network of trails, greenways, blueways and conservation corridors linking 15 Carolinas counties.

The network will support biking, hiking, fishing and paddling. Segments will be designed, built and owned by the counties and towns they go through.

Iredell residents can participate through the workshops and through surveys. A public online and hard-copy survey will be available soon, plus an interactive web page via a link on

The workshops will be 7-8:30 p.m. Wednesday at Union Grove Community Center, 1869 W. Memorial Highway, Harmony, and Thursday at Lowe's YMCA, 170 Joe V. Knox Ave., Mooresville. The first was June 29 in Statesville.

A steering committee of staff and volunteers leads the Iredell effort. Assisting are Alta Planning + Design, a firm specializing in park and trail development, and The Lawrence Group's town planning and landscape architecture studio.

Details:; Ron Smith, 704-832-2322 or