Stanly County Articles & Publications

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Robots delivering coffee, drones with pills, self-driving shuttles: Is the future here yet?
   April 28, 2022
Ely Portillo

The future of transportation has arrived in Charlotte — but the future comes with a few asterisks. 

This year has already seen a slew of announcements about futuristic transportation options in the Charlotte region (to say nothing of a new robot security guard uptown and...

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When it comes to transit, everyone wants ‘regionalism.’ But no one’s quite sure how to get there.
   February 2, 2022
Ely Portillo

There’s consensus in the new crop of local transportation plans: Whether we’re talking about trains, buses or roads, we’ll have to cross county borders and state lines to fund and operate an effective transit system. 

But in the traditionally siloed Charlotte region, how do we actually create some kind of regional entity — and who will get to control the purse strings and make...

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What does the 'Great Resignation' mean for Charlotte?
   January 25, 2022
Sydney Idzikowski

More people than ever are voluntarily leaving their jobs. This phenomenon, known as the Great Resignation, is happening in nearly every employment sector and across a broad range of income levels. Fueled by the pandemic, changes in how we work, increasing work demands, other opportunities and more, workers of all types are looking for a change. 

Records started shattering in the heat...

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Data that show why Charlotte houses are so expensive - and scarce
   July 28, 2021
Ely Portillo

Buying a house in the Charlotte region has, in many ways, never been more challenging. Buyers face a dizzying array of obstacles: A historic supply crunch, skyrocketing prices and homes that sell faster and faster each month. 

The reasons are numerous. Housing supply never fully recovered after the 2008 economic crash and Great Recession drove homebuilders out of business; pandemic-...

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Charlotte region's Hispanic population grows at a rapid pace
   July 7, 2020
Chuck McShane
It’s been nearly a generation since the 2000 Brookings Institution Report that classified Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham as “Emerging Immigrant Gateways,” based largely on the rapid growth of Hispanic/Latino immigrant population. Hispanics now make up more than 10% of the population of the 14-county Charlotte region, according to recently released U.S. Census Bureau population estimates. Read more


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How to help fireflies — and save a bit of summer magic
   June 22, 2020
Ruth Ann Grissom
A bobwhite quail calling from the edge of a stubbled hayfield. Honeybees buzzing in every patch of clover.  Fireflies hovering just beyond reach as dusk gives way to night. These are the images that come to mind when I think back to summers outdoors in the Uwharries when I was young. Little did I know that over the course of my lifetime, each of those species would experience precipitous... Read more


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The pandemic is an opportunity for investing in our community
   June 16, 2020

Stephen Grotz
As the world sinks towards an unprecedented depression, now is the time to invest.   The demand for the most valuable commodity in the world — human ingenuity — has not been this low since the Great Depression in 1933. The nation’s unemployment rate spiked to 16.1% in April 2020 (before dipping to 13.3% in May), and world populations are confined to their homes, threatening the global economy.... Read more


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Post-coronavirus, everything will change in cities — or not
   June 4, 2020
Mary Newsom
We who write about cities are quick to make predictions. Some will prove prescient. Some won’t. But nobody really knows. Cities aren’t all alike. New York’s texture, way of life and pandemic experience are not Charlotte’s, or Houston’s, or Seattle’s. And this: We humans have a long history of behaving both predictably and unpredictably. Read more


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Identifying the frog calls of spring
   May 27, 2020

Lily Cooper
June is upon us, and the rush of activity in the ponds, streams, and vernal pools of our state is already well underway. For many native frogs, it’s breeding season. Right now is a great time to experience the variety of nighttime songs that signal the return of summer in our waterways. The best part is, you don’t need to collect ticks or put on a pair of waders to do so. Frog songs can be... Read more


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Growing peas and finding peace in the Piedmont
   May 26, 2020
Ruth Ann Grissom
The English peas are finished. Given the long spell of mild weather we’ve enjoyed this year, I’d hoped this cool-weather crop might last a bit longer. Alas, they still flamed out in a matter of weeks. English peas (Pisum sativum) are the very essence of a Piedmont spring – sweet and tender and all too fleeting. Read more