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Editor's Picks

White sand, Shell Island: The 20th century ‘Negro Atlantic City’ that never was

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NEW HANOVER COUNTY –– It was advertised as “a Negro Atlantic City.” Built by white developers in 1923 on a 70-acre strip of sand north of Wrightsville Beach, the Shell Island Resort was one of the first places where Blacks could go to enjoy the beach in the oppressive Jim Crow America. Thousands of visitors […]

Labor shortage spurs local production delays, hinders business expansion

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SOUTHEASTERN N.C. –– If company leaders were confident they could find the workers, Acme Smoked Fish would have already expanded by now.  But the manufacturing plant 10 miles outside of Wilmington can’t fully staff its operations as is.  CATCH UP ON PART ONE: Manufacturing partnership forms to enhance perception of blue-collar jobs, build up local labor […]

Manufacturing partnership forms to enhance perception of blue-collar jobs, build up local labor supply

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SOUTHEASTERN N.C. –– A group representing nearly 30 manufacturing companies, including a handful of the largest employers in the region, has banded together to form an official alliance.  The Cape Fear Manufacturing Sector Partnership is the first of its kind in the region and possibly the second in N.C.  Its novelty is in an industry-driven structure, […]
Residential construction in Brunswick Forest and the greater Leland area rapidly continues as a $1 billion bridge is planned in its path. (Port City Daily photo/Johanna Ferebee)

In less than a year, national builders have strengthened their grip on Wilmington’s development market

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SOUTHEASTERN N.C. — National, publicly traded companies are amassing large tracts of undeveloped land in the greater Wilmington market at a greater frequency and intensity than they were previously, according to multiple industry experts.  The companies have begun creeping further past the state line from the comfortable hub of Myrtle Beach, venturing deeper into Brunswick […]

Region’s water supplier exceeded 100% of its capacity in 2019. Post-pandemic, demand could climb again.

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SOUTHEASTERN, N.C. — Two summers ago, the public utility responsible for delivering raw water to hundreds of thousands of people in the Cape Fear region hit its absolute limits. The system broke its output record around Memorial Day 2019, pumping out more than it’s designed to deliver for three consecutive days May 28-30, peaking at […]

How one physician started a revolution in Scotts Hill, recruiting investors and NHRMC along the way

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SOUTHEASTERN N.C. — Action brews just south of the New Hanover-Pender County line, where blueprints for an expansive medical complex along the Highway 17 corridor have been cocooning for decades.  New Hanover Regional Medical Center holds an outpost in this northern corner of New Hanover County, called Scotts Hill, which currently serves as home base […]

Brunswick sewer systems so maxed out, a ‘pump and haul’ operation interrupted school pickups

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BRUNSWICK COUNTY — Two public wastewater treatment plants serving northeastern Brunswick County are so maxed out of treatment capacity, utilities turned to a pump-and-haul arrangement to divert excess flow to a southwestern plant with room to handle it. The operation created chaos for school pick-ups and drop-offs at Town Creek Middle and Elementary Schools. In […]

One town’s quest to de-densify led lawmaker to file de-annexation bill for builder

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SUNSET BEACH — Just a few miles east of the state border, the Town of Sunset Beach has spent the last few months poring over its land-use policies, trying to codify a means to curb and control growth.  The town finds itself entangled in a web of attorneys, developers, lobbyists, and a state legislator, all […]

Savior or sabotage? Village faces pressure from Brunswick, Southport in Bald Head ferry sale

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BRUNSWICK COUNTY — Last week, the Brunswick County Board of Commissioners and Southport Board of Aldermen each unanimously passed resolutions supporting a state-created entity, mandated by the legislature to purchase Bald Head Island’s private ferry system. The county and city’s sign of solidarity with Bald Head Island Transportation Authority (BHITA) is a direct response to […]

Restaurant workers became jobless at the start of the pandemic. Why haven’t they come back?

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SOUTHEASTERN N.C. –– After six years of working in the same kitchen, Charlie Blake traded in his apron and chef hat to be a stay-at-home dad. In August he walked away from his well-paying position as corporate executive chef for Cambridge Village of Wilmington to care for his 7-month-old baby and help his 7-year-old daughter […]