By 2004, Wake County's growth had exceeded 23,000 people per year. To meet the demands of growth and benefit the community, voters were asked and approved on November 2, 2004, for the County to issue general obligation bonds for:
$40 million for Wake Technical Community College expansion plans
Over the last decade, Wake Tech has grown to meet the needs of its expanding and increasingly diverse student population, adding facilities for engineering technology, health sciences and student services. Now, the college is planning a new campus in northern Wake County. This will allow Wake Tech to serve many more students, and also will make classes more convenient – some students drive nearly an hour each way to attend classes.
Here's a look at how the proposed $40 million bond would be used, and funding Wake Tech has received since 1993.
Proposed Wake County bond referendum, 2004, $40 million:
401 North Campus - Phase II
Public safety center to expand training for law enforcement officers, emergency medical technicians and firefighters
Repairs and renovations on existing campuses
State of North Carolina bond referendum, 2000, $33 million:
401 North Campus - Phase I
Roofing and renovation projects on existing campuses
State of North Carolina bond referendum, 1994, $11 million:
Student Services Building
Purchase of land for the 401 North Campus
Wake County bond referendum, 1993, $30 million:
Engineering Technology Building
Health Sciences Building
Transport Technologies Building
LeMay Hall/Pucher Hall additions
Americans with Disabilities Act accessibility renovations
401 North Campus
In July 2004, Wake Tech broke ground for its new 401 North Campus, on 125 acres between Louisburg Road and the Neuse River.
Highlights of Phase I, targeted to open by fall 2007, include:
- Site development and infrastructure
- Two classroom buildings with science labs, computer labs, library, tutorial center, offices
- Physical plant building
If the bond is approved, Phase II development would start in 2005. Highlights include two additional buildings (about 115,000 square feet) with classrooms, labs, offices and multipurpose areas to serve the training needs of new and expanding industry in Wake County.
$26 million for open space acquisition
Wake County has crafted a strong Environmental Stewardship Agenda to protect our drinking water and ensure that citizens tomorrow enjoy the same quality life we enjoy today. The Agenda focuses on water and air quality, open space preservation, solid waste disposal and recycling, and environmental health and education.
Major plans that are being implemented include:
- Comprehensive Open Space Plan: For the first time, citizens have worked together on a countywide open space plan. This "greenprint for the future" knits together the County's open space plan with those of all 12 Wake County municipalities. This unique plan provides for open space protection in ways that are close to home, such as greenway linkages and neighborhood parks.
- Watershed and Growth Management Plans: These plans address growth issues, including the critical matter of watershed protection and setting priorities for purchases under the County's open space plan.
No tax increase was needed to repay these bonds.