Pic of the Week

Elan Apartments construction in downtown Raleigh
A crane is up at the site of the Elan Apartments on Wilmington Street. This is one of the quietest projects I’ve ever seen with very little information about it out on the web.

With the potential for many more residents on this end of Peace Street it could significantly increase the pedestrian traffic. Glenwood South and are the bookends of Peace Street, the only real east-west connection in northern downtown. That funnel effect may make the street more urban over time, especially after the Capital Boulevard bridge is worked on.

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Peace Street is kinda difficult as a pedestrian corridor in some ways. Bridge under Capital is a mess and the one under the railroad has some dark elements at night. And it’s pretty hilly for a downtown street too.
If I were to live in these apartments, I’d probably be more drawn to Fayetteville Street, City Market and North Person/Seaboard areas mostly. And to get to Glenwood I’d take the R-Line (a stop there at Polk Street), or walk/bike down Lane Street or Jones. :-)

The downside to these apartments is that, even though their location makes them PERFECT for state employees, I doubt hardly any will live there. From what I can tell online from Elan’s other apartment communities, these will be priced so high, almost no state employees will be able to afford it.

Glad to see some stuff being built in that lot, even if it is more overpriced cookie-cutter apt complex. Just happy to see growth. Ain’t even mad about the ugly new convention center hotel. JUST KEEP BUILDING!

I am excited for these apartments, as a government employee this location is ideal for me. I can walk home at lunch time and let the dog out and the R-line helps a ton with getting around downtown. Lets see the rent costs though before I am totally sold.

I’m so glad I finally bought a house. The rents even for non-prime areas are going up so fast I can’t believe it.

RaleighRob,

I agree with you about Peace St. as it is today. But, this corridor is getting significant attention from the City. If the corridor is properly redesigned, I think the east-west bike/pedestrian traffic can become significant.

Leo, Are you a P-Base or P-5 supporter? I like P-5. I think it’s worth the extra cost. I also care a lot about the Wade redesign. I really dislike the current trumpet design. But, from the last City Council meeting, it sounds like the diamond design is more expensive and no more value.

With all this talk about the Capital Boulevard Bridge vs. pedestrian activity…wouldn’t the best solution be to just eliminate the bridge and have a signaled intersection? Capital would have to get a little bit wider but the overall intersection would be reduced by 50% when you consider the bridge and the off-ramps. Adding one traffic light to Capital through downtown would have a minimal effect on travel times. Reducing the east-west width of the no-man’s-land the bridge and on-ramps create would be the best way to insure Peace street has a snowball’s chance as a pedestrian corridor. In my opinion neither proposed alternative is going to improve the pedestrian experience in a meaningful way. P-5 is definitely better than base, but no one is going to want to walk under that bridge, that the street wall will still have a significant gap due to right 9of way requirements and the inability to build right up against the bridge.

The one thing that I think would get more pedestrians to cross under the bridge would be retail/restaurants/office/residential directly on either side of the bridge. Right now, walking under the bridge is pointless because there’s nothing there to walk to and its a three block dead zone. If this is going to be an active corridor then the solution is to encourage active uses along the street – its not the bridge itself thats a problem.

I have to agree with mike^

I agree with Mike as well. There are plenty of examples of under-bridge pedestrian facilities. Lighting, protection from cars, art, etc. make for a safe friendly passage.

Only thing I can find online about Elan is building permits.
http://onlinedevcenter.raleighnc.gov/DevServices/planning/PlansReviewResults.aspx?TransactionNumber=376101

1.94 acres, 213 units, 5 stories, 2 buildings, wrapping a parking deck, with an exterior pool and a dog park. The building will be type III which generally means wood frame construction.

Orulz, Will you check on or let me know how to check on the building permit for Charter Square Project ? Thanks ! Dwight Nipper

Man, the only bridges in Raleigh with any design or aesthetic would be the footbridge over 440 and the one over Dawson. It would be cool if this new construction incorporated colored lights or some sort of metalwork too. But of course nothing too gaudy.

^agreed

Dwight Nipper, building permits for Charter Square:
http://onlinedevcenter.raleighnc.gov/devservices/planning/PlansReviewResults.aspx?TransactionNumber=379618

The trick is to look projects up by address. Charter Square’s address is 501 Fayetteville Street.

Looks like some level of approval was given last Friday (2/28), but final approval has not been given and building permits have yet to be issued. Groundbreaking typically happens immediately after permits are issued, but I really don’t know how long it will be until that happens.

Hey Orulz, Thanks so much for the info. This has really been helpful for me . Hopefully the permits will be approved soon & const. to start.
Dwight Nipper

Orulz , I notice on the permit for Charter Square that it shows a 12 – story tower , not the 11 – story tower that the news reported .
Dwight Nipper

Dwight- I see it now too! Huh, wouldn’t that be cool if they made it even taller. I have high hopes that Charter Square Bldng2 (North Tower) will soon be Raleigh’s tallest building… fingers crossed!

The 12th floor is probably due to elevation. My guess is that it will be 12 floors on the Wilmington Str side and 11 floors on the Fayetteville Str side, but I hope I am wrong. I don’t mind them adding an extra floor. Hell, they can add another 21 floors if they want :LOL:

I drove by these Elan apartments yesterday, and it struck me how transformational they will be for that area. Such a dead zone of government buildings, which are cool from an urban feel perspective because they’re tall and clustered… but completely dead. A bunch of apartments mixed with the church building project right by there, and the Peace Street townhomes going up, plus the continued renovations to the big houses nearby and Seaboard Station filling out, and N Person St’s new businesses…. this whole northern DT may get a lot better really soon.

Also, Charlotte is getting a Skyhouse now. That will be the 12th one I believe. As silly as skyscraper (I use that loosely) chains seem, I honestly would be happy if all 12 of them got put in Raleigh. Decent looking tall buildings that go up fast. We could definitely use more of those!

One overlooked problem with Peace street pedestrian mobility is the railroad bridge. It is very dark, and the SW sidewalk is so narrow you feel like a car mirror will hit you. Assuming the railroad won’t rebuild its bridge anytime soon, we’re stuck with the existing right of way under it. Also, nobody will like it but it needs islands to control the turns and to slow down cars. I would go so far as to have single through lanes and really long turn lanes (instead of two travel lanes and one hopelessly short turn lane) with bike lanes and wide sidewalks. I also envision diagonal parking in front of the the dry cleaner/shoe shop. (that funky sidewalk in Finches parking lot is because Peace used to dogleg at the railroad back when it was at grade)

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