2023 My Cary Community Candidate Speech
Updated: Aug 23
"Hello, I am councilmember Ryan Eades and I am running for my seat on the Cary Town Council in District D. I’m a husband, father of 4, a deacon serving my church, and I work in the information technology space as a digital product manager at the North Carolina State Employee Credit Union. As a longtime resident of western Cary, I have witnessed the remarkable transformation of our region. I became interested in the transformation that was happening around me and decided to become more involved in town development and do my part to serve and support our town. I applied for a volunteer position on the Town of Cary Planning and Zoning board where I served for 6 years, chairing the board my final year. As a volunteer for the town, I learned what it meant to be committed and give back to the community, something I have taken with me to my current role serving on the Council. I believe overall Cary is on the right path and feel we owe a lot of our success to the citizens of Cary that have come together to develop a truly unique community with a high quality of life. We are doing great financially, and I am committed to keeping our taxes as low as possible while being strategic and intentional in any future spending decisions. Cary is consistently recognized as one of the best places to live and to do business along with one of the best places to raise a family, which are all reasons my family and I decided to establish roots here in Cary 13 years ago. Given our successes there is still work to be done and I look to focus on a few areas that I believe will make Cary even greater. First, I want to focus on connectivity, specifically within the western portions of Cary. It is great to continue to grow the number of greenways and sidewalks, and I’m a big proponent of walkable communities, but if there is no connectivity what value do these add? If you have sidewalks that don’t link, greenways that go nowhere, or roads that constantly transition between 2 and 4 lanes, that infrastructure is not being fully utilized. We need to prioritize these types of connections.I also plan to address the need for transit in the district, and I pushed for funding in our FY24 budget for a transit study. Currently there is a single GoCary stop in all district D, and I would love to see a fixed rout that connects with the rest of Cary sometime in the near future. But connectivity is not just about connecting infrastructure, it is also about connecting people. It is important for the town to partner with communities and I am committed to be open and responsive to concerns and needs. This past spring we held the first ever town-sponsored HOA networking event that including invitations to the over 30 HOAs in the district, which I hope to turn into an annual event. I want Cary to be a welcoming and inclusive community, where we listen to all voices and come together to find a balance. Another of my priorities is balanced growth. There is only around 10-15% of developable land left in Cary, with the vast majority of that in western Cary. It is critical for us to implement strategies to develop this remaining land in a balanced manner and given my experience on the planning and zoning board I feel I’m well equipped to do that. I believe my district has plenty of residential development but is currently lacking in commercial and office. I’m looking to continue to push for more mixed-use to make up for this. We do not want our community to degrade based on rapid growth, but we need to continue balancing that growth with things like housing affordability. I look to implement solutions that will increase the supply of housing ensuring our town is accessible to all. We need to continue to balance historical preservation in order to maintain Cary’s character and an understanding and respect of our past. I also want to continue focusing on public safety, and while we have one of the best police departments around and an ISO-1 certified fire department, the best rating a fire department can receive, we are lacking in rescue services and have work to do there in order to improve. Lastly, I look to prioritize environmental conservation and be mindful of the impacts all of our decisions have on our environment. With my undergraduate degree in environmental science, I understand the importance of preservation and the continued need for investments in parks and open space. It is critical to look at expanding programs like My Tree, Our Tree and provide more trees to residents to help grow our tree canopy. But we also need to look at promoting education and outreach efforts to help increase involvement and show respect for our natural resources. I’m excited for projects like the White Oak Creek Conservation Area that will serve as focal points to promote environmental conservation. Given my background and experience I’m well qualified to continue representing the residents of district D on the Cary Town Council. Please visit my website at ryanforcary.com and I respectfully ask for your vote this October, to continue to make Cary the great place we call home."