STEELE CREEK NEWS
Stephens was Featured Speaker at Association Meeting
20, 2006) Chief Darrel Stephens of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police
Department was the featured speaker at the 2006 meeting of the
Steele Creek Residents Association. (See
photographs below.) He said that one of the biggest
challenges of the Police Department was keeping up with growth.
Steele Creek Division is one of the largest patrol
districts in the system in both population and area. It comprises
nearly 100 square miles in Southwest Mecklenburg County, extending
north to I-85 and east to Billy Graham Parkway and South Boulevard.
The population has increased from 48,000 to 66,000 in the last five
Captain Diego Anselmo
is the Division Commander.
A key to
fighting crime is the development of partnerships between the police
and the community. Chief Stephens said the department wants to spend
more time on crime prevention to reduce criminals' opportunities.
The Steele Creek
Division is a pioneer in the
Citizens on Patrol program in which volunteers assist
officers by relieving some of their workload.
Gangs and gang
activity has increased within Charlotte and the Steele Creek
community. A major reason youths join gangs is that they do not have
a stable family life or good adult role models. Gangs provide the
structure they are looking for. A key to combating gangs is to
provide youth with positive, alternative activities.
you need assistance from a police officer in an emergency, call 911,
but if you would like to discuss an ongoing problem, such as
repeated vandalism in your community, or would like to organize
Neighborhood Watch in your community, call the Steele Creek Division
at 704-336-7800 and ask to speak to a community police officer. The
office is not staffed for 24 hours a day, so if no one is available,
leave a message on voicemail. (See CMPD's Steele Creek Division Services
Steele Creek (2/26/2004).)
Chief Stephens was
introduced by Mecklenburg County Sheriff Jim Pendergraph, who is a
lifelong resident of Steele Creek. Chief Stephens discussed how the
Police and Sheriff's Departments work closely on various issues,
such as studying how drug and alcohol usage influences criminal
activity and the need for increased resources in the criminal
Linda Blackwelder gave an update on activities of the
Steele Creek Library
Association. The association raised $93,000 in its fund
drive in 2004. This has enabled the association to provide our new
library and the library staff with many extras that were not
available in their regular budget and has made the Steele Creek
Library the envy of the system.
The next goal for the
association is to improve the garden area. They hope to organize a
Garden Committee to work in the garden and also are looking for more
donations to finance improvements. (If you are interested,
Come Help in the Library
Garden March 4.)
Chris Thomas of Childress-Klein discussed their new RiverGate
shopping center, which is under construction at the corner of
Highway 49 and 160. Home Depot opened last November and Super Target
is on schedule to open by this July. Other stores that have signed
on are Best Buy, Marshalls, Office Max, PetSmart, CVS Pharmacy,
Chick-fil-A, Starbucks, Fuel Pizza, and Carrabbas Italian Grill
restaurant. Most will open by next fall.
is talking to another apparel store, a book store, and two upscale
They are using a
traditional architectural style that emphasizes native stone and
other natural materials. RiverGate will feature a
pedestrian-friendly hub at its center. They also will be building a
greenway trail along Walkers Branch at the eastern edge of the
center. This will have connections to the center, where cyclists
will find ample bike racks.
President of The Steele Creek Residents Association, acknowledged
the Lower Lake Wylie Association, which made a major difference in
the way The Palisades is being developed. Developers reduced the
number of residences and has devoted more resources to water
management. The Lower Lake Wylie Association has disbanded and made
a contribution to the Steele Creek Community Trail Committee.
Karl also is Chairman
Steele Creek Community Trail Committee and gave an update
on its activities. The group has made major progress in the
acquisition of land for trails along Steele Creek and Walkers
Branch. Most property owners along the route are donating
right-of-way easements. The Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation
Department and Mecklenburg County Real Estate Services are working
with property owners to get the land surveyed and transferred to the
The Steele Creek Residents Association was pleased to provide an
opportunity for the approximately 125 attendees to learn more
about activities in the community and to interact with their
neighbors. The association wishes to express its thanks to Pastor
Bob Jack and members of Pleasant Hill Presbyterian Church for
providing space for the meeting.
Read an article about
the meeting in the
Lake Wylie Pilot for February 21.
Residents Association President Karl Froelich
and Mecklenburg County Sheriff Jim Pendergraph listen to
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Darrel Stephens.
Pastor Bob Jack of Pleasant Hill Presbyterian
Church welcomes Steele Creek residents.
Linda Blackwelder gives an update on the
Steele Creek Library.
The Steele Creek Community Trail Committee had
T-Shirts for sale.
Chief Stephens addresses the group.
Approximately 125 persons attended the