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Local developer runs for Pittsboro Mayor

By Randolph Voller
Posted Sunday, August 7, 2005

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Pittsboro, NC - Randy Voller, a local developer interested in open government, downtown revitalization and prevention of suburban sprawl, has filed to run for Mayor of Pittsboro. He has a vision for the economic development of Pittsboro that includes promotion of the arts, recreation, diverse downtown businesses and small high-tech businesses and industries.

“Pittsboro has the potential to be a unique economic magnet, while maintaining its small-town, friendly atmosphere,” Voller said. “That is not just my vision of Pittsboro’s potential but what I keep hearing citizens tell me on a regular basis.”

“I want to see Pittsboro grow from the center out, rather than the other way around,” he said. “This will save on infrastructure costs, as well as promote walkable and bikeable streets where families have easy access to shopping, eating, enjoying music, recreation and social interaction.”

A native of Indiana, Voller moved to the Triangle area in 1991. He has worked as a developer, builder, and development consultant in Durham, Wake and Orange counties and throughout the state over the last fifteen years.

He started his first development project in northern Chatham in 1995, when he built Daniel Ridge, a large-lot residential subdivision. He began his current innovative residential development, Chatham Forest in Pittsboro, in 1997. He and his wife, graphic designer Lesley Landis, live in the neighborhood. It will eventually contain over 200 homes.

“This is a unique residential development in a number of ways,” Voller said. “I believe I am setting a model for a type of reasonably affordable, family-oriented residential development that will become a true sustainable community.”

Innovations include: building custom-made homes at a reasonable price [$130,000 to $350,000]; blending a mixed range of houses throughout the development; sidewalks; using only small, local builders; maintaining the natural hardwood forests surrounding the homes; natural trails and greenways; interconnected streets and basketball courts that are open to children from nearby, more moderately priced, residential neighborhoods.

Voller has a bachelor’s degree in history, specializing in East Asian studies, from Indiana University in 1991. He is proud of the diverse range of families live in his development.

“This is the type of diversity that attracts well educated and qualified people to want work and live in Pittsboro, “Voller said.

Voller’s father, retired steel executive Lothar Voller, is his partner in Voller Realty and Construction. His father lives in Chatham Forest part of the year, but most of the time lives with Voller’s mother, Viktoria Voller, who is an assistant professor of innovation and entrepreneurial studies at Ivey Tech Community College in Indiana.

Voller has a strong record of supporting recreation. He coached little league baseball for a number of years throughout the Triangle. Baseball is in his blood. His grandfather was a catcher in the Major Leagues. Voller’s company provided significant funds to Northwood High School to pay for a new athletic scoreboard.

He is also a proponent of blending moderate income housing with higher end housing. He has worked with the Chatham County Housing Authority to place low and moderate income families into “good quality” affordable homes.

Another civic cause that both he and his wife support both financially and as volunteers is the Triangle Bereavement Center, which provides free counseling and therapeutic services to persons and families who have suffered the loss of loved ones.

“You do not really know how valuable such a service can be until you experience this type of tragic and sudden loss,” said Voller. He and Leslie lost their 3-month-old daughter in 2001.

Voller is active in the Chatham County Homebuilders Association and a member of the Chapel Hill and Raleigh Board of Realtors.

This article was submitted by the candidate, Randy Voller

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