Former green space in the 1900 block of Bivins Street
  • Lisa Sorg
  • Former green space in the 1900 block of Bivins Street

One of the small pleasures of living in Durham’s Lakewood neighborhood (full disclosure: I do) is strolling by a thicket of forest and bamboo in the 1900 block of Bivins Street. The stalks lean every which way or another and to peer through that jungle is to look through a kaleidoscope. And early in the morning, the woods rustles with birds and other critters.

(On this Google satellite map, it’s the green space between James and Chapel Hill streets on the north side of Bivins.)

Well, say goodbye to most of that urban oasis. Neighbors knew the 6.6 acres was slated for development—10 bungalows, starting from $170,000, the B. Wallace Design & Construction sign reads—but now it’s for real. Last week, the bulldozers, Bobcats and chainsaws started flattening, trampling and cutting to make way for a development similar to the one B. Wallace built on Nation Avenue. About two and a half acres will remain as green space.

Future residents of what Bamboo Park (that’s what I’ve chosen to call it) will find an all-way stop at the perilous corner of Bivins, Chapel Hill and Jersey streets. Indy intern Jason Y. Lee wrote about that intersection in the paper last week. The N.C. Department of Transportation has erected a flashing sign near the intersection alerting drivers to the new traffic pattern, which is goes into effect Tuesday, Nov. 22. Be advised.

Take advantage of the new traffic pattern by rolling down your window and inhaling the aroma emanating from the Mexican bakery on the corner. Stop and smell the empanadas before they’re gone.