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Featured Case Study

Relational, Not Transactional Building Cary's 311

311 is a non-emergency phone number people call in many cities across the country for information about government programs and services, as well as to report problems. As 311 trended nationally, Cary considered implementing it in the early 2000s to continue to improve its citizen experience. Such a change would mean combining the Town’s three non-emergency call centers into one space. But a 311 project didn’t move forward at the time. Continue reading

Case Studies

The Local Government that Doesn’t Exist is created, in part, through experimentation. By creating Case Studies to tell our stories, we learn and, in turn, teach others through our experiences. Please check back as we continue to share Cary, NC case studies.

“Form and function—style is substance.”

Featured Case Studies
Posted on October 10, 2021

Relational, Not Transactional

Building Cary's 311

311 is a non-emergency phone number people call in many cities across the country for information about government programs and services, as well as to report problems. As 311 trended nationally, Cary considered implementing it in the early 2000s to continue to improve its citizen experience. Such a change would mean combining the Town’s three non-emergency call centers into one space. But a 311 project didn’t move forward at the time. Continue reading

Posted on May 25, 2020

Pay Up!

Owning Our Piece of the Mess - Improving Bill Paying

It was the spring of 2018 when Water System Manager Alex Jones walked into the office of Terry Meyers, an administrative specialist in the Town of Cary’s Public Works Department, and noticed the piles of invoices strewn across the top of her desk. That was when Jones realized the Town had a problem. Continue reading

Posted on May 15, 2020

Urban Drive

Surviving the Changes of Moving from High Growth to “Maturing” Community

In response to the Planning and Zoning Board vote, a diverse team of staff began strategy meetings to move the case forward. Even the smallest details were considered, including context, timing and consulting the developer. Continue reading

Posted on December 5, 2019

The Ripple Effect

In early 2018, a cross-departmental group of employees embarked on a journey together to learn and discuss leadership concepts foundational to Cary’s new and evolving culture. The leadership principles that Sean Stegall brought with him to Cary stemmed from “Leadership on the Line” by Ronald A. Heifetz and Marty Linsky. This group was an attempt at a culture and leadership program with a goal to prepare participants to apply the principles of adaptive leadership to their everyday work. Continue reading

Posted on January 15, 2012

Election Night

Not always necessary to dread election results

I spent my most recent election night alone in a hotel room watching reruns of Law & Order: SVU. No Internet. No phone. No contact with the outside world. No idea about who would be running my world when I woke the next morning. It’s not that any of the candidates would have been bad for the community. They all wanted to contribute—that’s why they ran in the first place. Instead, it’s fear of the unknown. Fear of plans being derailed. Fear of losing control. Continue reading