You may think its Chapel Hill, or Raleigh or Apex. But when you’re flying into RDU at night and look out the window, what you see out that window is a metropolitan area. But we don’t manage it like one. We don’t operate like a metro area. We pay a high price because we don’t plan like one, and we don’t negotiate like one. We don’t buy equipment and services and land like one. We don’t throw our weight around like one, we don’t make our voice heard like one, and we don’t talk to prospective companies with the sophistication and wherewithal of one.
I’ve said this before, but a metropolitan agency to plan for infrastructure, water, sewer, and public services would provide immediate benefits of efficiency and economies of scale. More importantly, it would get us on the same page in matters that concern all of us.
Our economic development officials, that work tirelessly for us, would be an even stronger force and could help us win corporate expansions or relocations All of the time.
Cary will be still Cary and Zebulon will still be Zebulon. This isn’t about making the Triangle one big city.
But watersheds and deep aquifers don’t care about city limits and if we’re going to secure an ample water supply for the entire Triangle, we shouldn’t either. Such oversight would also allow us to build roads that don’t have to make a broken-field zig-zag to accommodate the differing plans of a dozen municipalities over 20 miles. The same goes for sewer and many public services.
The short of it is that private companies of a like-mind have for years merged to gain efficiencies and economies of scale to become competitive. But first we need to educate the residents of this region on the benefits of thinking and acting like a region in matters that concern us all.