This evening our special guest speaker was Mayor Jacques Gilbert. He has presented at our club in the past and returned this evening to give us an update on many things going on in the town of Apex.
He began by thanking the Apex Lions for our many years of community service to the Town of Apex and also for supporting him way back in 2011 when he was pursuing the skate park initially. We were the first group to formally support him in that cause and he thanked us for that support again this evening.
He also honored our own Lion Larry Jordan who was the Mayor of Apex back in the 1980s. It often takes years for the benefits of decisions to be manifest. So many of the great things happening in Apex today would not have been possible had it not been for his leadership back then.
Then he proceeded to give us a quite lengthy and informative presentation and provided us with quite a bit of detail about a great many topics. So I will just summarize here by listing some of the topics discussed:
- Taxes have gone up – people are still moving to Apex (even though the rate of growth has slowed recently we are still growing year over year. We currently have 73,000 citizens! Wit more citizens come more demands for services.
- We still have a “bedroom community” economy. That is to say we have approximately 80% tax revenue from residential and only 20% from commercial. This is something that he is focused on.
- Pickleball is a phenomenon in Apex! And in many other places in the region.
- Housing prices are up dramatically. Affordable housing is a big concern and much work is happening in this area.
- Transportation and parking are also huge concerns. There was a lengthy discussion about parking for downtown and the plans that were in place and how things are changing. There was also some discussion about the NC DOT delays and the new bus routes as well as future plans for a rail system for the region.
- The long awaited Downtown plan was discussed including the streets and sidewalks bond for connectivity, reliability and walkability
At the end our members were able to ask several questions and Jacques was very transparent with his answers. There is an awful lot going on in and around our town these days. I guess that should come as no surprise given how much we have grown recently.
Thank you Mayor Jacques for visiting with us this evening and for sharing this information and answering our questions!