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Raleigh’s planning commission has officially given the green light for the partial rezoning of Shaw University.

As reported by ABC11, the commission voted 7-1 in favor of the “Shaw U. District,” which will allow the local HBCU permission to lease land to outside developers in an attempt to reimagine the campus.

To get approval, Shaw agreed to reduce the maximum building height to 30 stories on some blocks. Bars and nightclubs will also be prohibited from the campus.

Shaw’s President Dr. Paulette Dillard spoke with the panel this morning (Feb. 28), saying that the campus cannot survive on tuition alone. “We have favorably and with all transparency made this application and would desire for you to approve it,” she said.

However, there are critics who disagreed with the rezoning, including the great-great grandson of Shaw’s founder, who spoke this morning.

“There appears to be a lack of transparency. I just learned about this initiative in the last week. So not that we play such a role in the future of the university but I do represent the family that founded the school and we have not been engaged one bit,” said Pete Chamberlain.

Despite the objection, the committee approved the rezoning plans. It now goes to the full Raleigh City Council for final approval.

Raleigh Approves Shaw University Rezoning Project  was originally published on