1. Yes, a reliable edifice, indeed — for more than 130 years! Thanks for posting the pic Leo. The idea that this row of historic 19th century Wilmington St. storefronts might be taken out by such a banal and over-hyped structure as “the Edison” makes me want to puke.

  2. I’m looking forward to The Edison replacing that block, personally. The problem is that the storefronts, and the buildings themselves, are in such low-class, disrepair status that they are a waste of the valuable property space that they are sitting on.

    Granted, it would be cool to see the buildings refurbished to their original glory, but they are STILL only two stories tall! The scale of the buildings is way too small for the center of downtown as it is currently growing. If those buildings were along an edge of the downtown area, they would be more fitting, but as they are located in the heart of downtown, they really need to be removed.

  3. Ashe, I totally agree with you. The Edison is a great revitalization project. Older buildings may be nice to maintain, but there is not much we can save in this block when it comes to architecture. Plus, “old” does not equal “historic”. Maintaining these buildings would be costly and quite frankly it may do next to nothing to help our downtown’s economy, particularly as we try to bring more residents and workers to our city’s core. It is pure economics. What makes a place “historic” is the people, not just the structures, which is why I am glad to hear that Coopers BBQ will remain in that block even after The Edison is finished.

    On the other hand, I would chew alive the person who would even suggest putting hands on Raleigh’s true gems, especially on the West side of the 200 block of Fayetteville Street. Thankfully, we still have a few older buildings worth saving and revitalizing – hopefully, Sir Walter Raleigh will take its turn – and I hope that we recognize those buildings and preserve them.

    As for The Edison, it is an outstanding vision and I can’t wait to see it delivered at least as big as envisioned. It is the kind of buildings we want to see if we are to build an image in accordance with our reputation. Sure, I wish the two tallest structures were different in height and architecture, but even as envisioned The Edison seems to fit what we try to accomplish as a city, particularly in terms of uses and street-level activity.

    Leo, many thanks for sharing this great photo with us. I have been photographing that section for years now, but none of my images have delivered the dramatic effect that your photo has captured. Excellent shot!!!

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