BOE to vote on early voting sites, scheduling

BOE to vote on early voting sites, scheduling
July 15
13:47 2020

The Forsyth County Board of Elections is considering adding two “Super Sites” to the list of early voting sites this fall. During a special called meeting last week, board members discussed adding mega sites at Hanes Mall and in the East Winston Community.

To account for the possibility of gathering restrictions still being in place this fall, election officials are considering condensing some of the smaller early voting precincts for larger sites that can accommodate more voters in a safer environment. Susan Campbell, chair of the Forsyth County Board of Elections (FCBOE), said the board is considering consolidating early voting sites at Carver Hill Commons and Miller Park Recreation Center for vacant space in the mall.

“Hanes Mall is a new addition and most of us like the idea because it does satisfy the need to spread out,” Campbell said.

County elections director Tim Tsujii said his team is finalizing an agreement to use the vacant space left by Sears or Macy’s.

The proposed super site in East Winston will likely be at Winston Lake YMCA, but election officials are also looking for other venues that could be considered a super site in the area. The Y is a voting precinct on Election Day, but historically it hasn’t been listed as an early voting site. Tsujii said they can request to use a larger space than normal.

“The room that we would be able to utilize is the same voting space that we use on Election Day,” Tsujii said. “There is a divider wall that separates or partitions a portion of that room. We can certainly speak to some representatives there to ensure the full use and access of the entire room. If you look at that space in its entirety, it’s well over 9,000 square feet, large enough certainly to accommodate what you would call a super site if need be.”

Right now the only other option for a super site in East Winston is vacant space in the East Winston Shopping Center. Tsujii said his staff has visited the site but hasn’t been able to find a contact person for the space. “Besides that, there is nothing else in that part of town comparable to the space at Hanes Mall,” Tsujii said.

Board member Robert Durrah said he wants to make sure they do a thorough search for locations in East Winston. He mentioned Galilee Missionary Baptist Church, but several board members expressed issues with availability and security when discussing using churches.

“I think we should take another look and see what we can find in East Winston … and if we can find something, try to secure it. I think that might be useful,” he said.

The board is also considering adding the Dash ballpark (Truist Stadium) to the list of early voting sites. FCBOE deputy chair Michelle Bobadilla said the site could be used to cut down on some of the traffic at Forsyth County Government Center. The stadium is one mile from the government center located on North Chestnut Street.

“They have a great room, easy access, it’s one level. Great parking, great curbside, but it will probably be the best option if the board was trying to add a site,” Bobadilla  continued. “It would not be an option for a mega site just because space is not enough to consolidate or move a big site to that site.”

Board member Catherine Jourdan said she thought adding the ballpark would be a good idea. She also mentioned that because the stadium is owned by the city, they wouldn’t have to pay to use the facility. “I think a lot of people would be excited about voting there and would consider it a novelty,” she said. “I think it would have a lot of value.”

Stuart Russell and John Loughridge said they didn’t think the ballpark should be added. Loughridge said adding the stadium isn’t, “worth the money, time or effort.”

Here’s a list of other proposed early voting precincts:

Forsyth County Government Center, 201 N. Chestnut St., Winston-Salem

Brown Douglas Recreation Center, 4725 Indiana Ave., Winston-Salem

Clemmons Library, 3554 Clemmons Road, Clemmons

Kernersville Senior Center, 130 East Mountain St., Kernersville

Lewisville Library, 6490 Shallowford Road, Lewisville

Maize Woodruff Center, 4905 Lansing Dr., Winston-Salem

Old Town Recreation Center, 4550 Shattalon Dr., Winston-Salem

Polo Park Recreation Center, 1850 Polo Road, Winston-Salem

WSSU-Anderson Center, 601 South Martin Luther King Jr. Dr., Winston-Salem

Rural Hall Library, 7125 Broad St., Rural Hall

Sedge Garden Recreation Center, 401 Robbins Road, Winston-Salem

Southside Library, 3185 Buchanan St., Winston-Salem

Walkertown Library, 2969 Main St., Walkertown

Sprague Street Recreation Center, 1350 East Sprague St., Winston-Salem

The Forsyth County Board of Elections is expected to make a final decision on early voting sites and the schedule for early voting during a tele-meeting on Thursday, June 16. For more information visit

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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