Wake County Hits 1 Million Residents

Throwing a tweet of mine up here on the blog for posterity.

And then let me add a little more statistics. According to a 2014 report from the Downtown Raleigh Alliance, we get this nice graphic.
Downtown Raleigh Resident Population Statistics
Click for larger

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    None right now. Must be a new project.


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  1. Leo, agree. Be nice if the number today was 15K – 20K in downtown Raleigh. But with that said, the number has steady growth, 5-10 years ago, Raleigh downtown had very little variety (now the restaurant/bar/nightclub scene is very good).
    Need more Skyhouse type of structures and more offcie space.

  2. Geographically speaking DTR is but a small portion of the total area of Wake County. Areas outside of downtown proper are also gaining density. It will be interesting to see how these districts evolve and how our perspective of what Downtown is changes.

  3. ^CX – I agree 100% – hopefully over the next 20 years, everything inside the 440 Beltline will be considered “Downtown Raleigh” !!! Maybe I’m being overzealous, but hey, I can dream!

  4. @Jake…I can see DT extend over time but I can’t imagine it going all the way to 440 of all sides. That said, I can see DT extend both north and south and to a lesser extent to the east and west.

  5. Not that I really care other than just knowing that our insecure Napoleon complex suffering cousin down I-85, will try to spin the story in their favor when it happens but I’m curious as to how many more months are they predicting before Wake passes Mecklenburg in pollination? I know we are closing fast and the predictions have Wake passing very soon.

    When the school syatem and Wake Tech passed them, you should have seen the spin job the chapter observer tried to put out. The fact that they could no longer say “we are the biggest X…” Was killing them. I lived there and have really never seen anything like it in any other city that I’ve lived in: the insecurity complex is amazing.

  6. Somebody needs to put spellcheck on this site to correct my iPhone which sucks….perhaps I could pay a little more attention to detail myself….;)

  7. It really is amazing being part of 1% and experiencing this growth downtown. I think there were only 5,000 people downtown when I got to college 4 years ago. A grocery store can’t be far away.

  8. How about this … RETAIL!!
    Has anyone ever considered putting shopping in the mix? You can’t just eat and party all the time! If you truly want the full downtown experience then, you gotta have stores,and shops,boutiques, and services! And all in one location. Maybe a high rise mall with popular anchor tenants. Seems to me….that’s the next logical step. Who ya gotta talk to to make THAT happen?

  9. Right Victor, Now you need more retail, the days of the Mall is so 1980’s.Downtown is going to need some sort of High Rise mall or Shops in the area. Stores,boutiques,so that folks can shop downtown as well as eat,drink and party. Maybe City leaders should think about that before you build any more High rise apartments.

  10. We keep hearing about more shops opening downtown….20 some this year I think. With more residents and more available nice retail space, I would imagine that retail will skyrocket over the next few years. L building, skyhouse, Edison apartments, Charter Square, even the new hotel are all adding retail space downtown. I wouldn’t expect it to sit idle for very long

  11. The lot next to the Convention Center (just North, with the rental car location sitting on it), that whole block is a perfect location for multiple high rises and signature Class A entertain/shopping district).

    Who owns that lot?

    If private, city needs to buy that lot and put a plan together asap. That is an empty lot eyesore.

  12. The downtown area apartment boom hasn’t really cooled off yet, so I expect the proportion of downtown residents will grow substantially. A grocery store is basically the one thing needed to push downtown over the edge.

    Cameron Village Harris Teeter more or less zaps a lot the grocery demand from downtown, but it seems to be hitting its carrying capacity. Their parking lot is a zoo. Amazing to think that all residents in Cameron Village area, downtown area, Meredith College, and NC State/Hillsborough St. area are all served by one grocery store.

    I’d also like to see the downtown resident number combined with North Hills, Hillsborough St., and Cameron Village folks. These are both relatively urban areas now and would give us a better idea of the urban dwelling crowd.

  13. On second glance, I think they are in fact counting all the above mentioned areas (minus North Hills) as being “downtown” aka 1 mile from CBD.

  14. Heads up: early stage site work has started at the new hotel site. They were performing soil testing the last 2 weeks. Also, soil testing was occurring on the dirt parking lot site next to Red Hat and across from the parking deck about a month ago. Not sure why. anyone heard anything about that empty dirt lot?

  15. That property is a great location for a Power Plant Live! (Baltimore) type of venue, only bigger and better (with 1-2 office towers, one tower having a signature rooftop representing the Triangle Region and another hotel (Westin)) – or a tower at each corner of the block, with shopping facing each street and a courtyard with shopping. Great central location and perfect compliment for convention center (walking distance to hotels & warehouse district).

  16. ^Jerry: about the huge parking lot area with the Enterprise rental car location- I’ve been saying this forever!!!! Would be the PERFECT location for a few monsters. Would really impact the skyline there as well. Also really love your ideas for the dirt lot next to Red Hat – would make a great space for an indoor music club to compliment Red Hat, kind of like the set up for the Fillmore(indoor venue) and next door amphitheater in Charlotte. However, while we can dream, I have not heard any rumors about it yet. Fingers crossed!!

  17. In today’s TBJ Amanda Hoyle has written a article stating that Highwoods Properties is selling 11 properties in Richmond Va. She is speculating that there is a possibility of Highwoods investing a large amount of $ in downtown Raleigh . Also the city council has been called for a special Thursday 8 a. m. meeting in their chambers concerning a real estate project. Wanted to pass this info. to everyone . Dwight Nipper

  18. Just got a called from a friend concerning Charter Square North Tower . Andy Andrews has started the drafting plans for the North Tower.

  19. Do any of you have thoughts on the potential for Skyhouse? I am looking to move downtown so any thougts about it or other residential areas would be appreciated. Thx!

  20. I got another call . The city council meeting for Thursday morning may be about the Dix deal.

  21. Dwight: very interested to see what comes of the Highwoods theory there… DEFINITELY interested to see what designs they come up with for the North Tower! It must be something iconic… something very architecturally unique. Something that will make our city truly stand out.

  22. I would not get our hopes up over Dix. Everyone I’ve spoken to have indicted the tea party GOPnut jobs have done nothing but try to extort money from the City yet keeping the most prime part of the park for parking lots and DHHS. In the process they plan to hose the city for millions.

    Meanwhile, one of the key whack job redneck legislators leading the charge got the State to “donate” a piece of property worth over $5million for $1 to the company for which he is employed….can you say conflict of interest and hypocrite?

    Sorry to be so cynical but the GOP has done nothing to date to believe they will do the right thing here.

  23. Uncle Jesse: Agree, that dirt bag politician is from Western NC, has and is extorting money from the state and now from the the city of Raleigh, with this pathetic amount for Dix (and this guy is a back woods nobody).
    The guy is a McCrory butt kisser.
    But McCrory is the biggest piece of scum in this whole process (and many others issues in the state). I pegged McCrory for a thief years ago.
    McCrory needs to step in and put a REASONABLE offer on the table for the CITY OF RALEIGH to purchase DIX (if this was that dirty city of Charlotte, McCrory would have sold it to them for $1 – McCrory is laughable and even more dirty than the Western NC politician (politician is another word for idiot who has no career)

  24. Ralph Hise is one of many dirty politicians who looks like a McCrory suck up. If McCrory stops quickly, HISE will disappear in his you know what! If Hise is associated with the $5M piece of property sold for $1, shows the back woods/uneducated mentality of some NC politicians (including McCrory).

    This is the same approach with DIX. Dirty politicians trying to extort money from a great growing city to benefit their own pockets (and it kills McCrory how great Raleigh is as a city).

  25. Save the political nonsense for another time and another site. Dix isn’t gonna sit idle forever and we all know that. Did we not expect intense price negotiations for 300 acres right next to downtown in one of the fastest growing cities in America? Instead of trying to hurl insults, maybe we should discuss what we hope to see done with Dix in the future.

  26. Daniel,

    The City of Raleigh entered into a legally binding contract with the State of North Carolina to lease Dix over a long-period of time in exchange for cleaning up the toxic waste on the site and investing millions into turning it into a great park. Somehow the GOP feels they can simply toss a legally binding contract because they ‘don’t like it’ because it was prepared by a Democrat Governor. Thought the GOP was in favor of ‘limited government’………their definition of ‘limited’ I suppose. It is impossible to dismiss the politics of Dix because it has become so political solely due to the acts of the legislature.

    What mechanism is there to prevent the GOP from simply choosing not to honor any other legally binding contract with Cities, Citizens, or any company that enters into a contract with the State of North Carolina?

  27. I’m 100% against turning Dix into a central park if it’s sold to Raleigh with all of the DHHS area cut out AND for an exorbitant price. It’s simply not worth it.

    The site needs to be scraped clean and have half of it developed as higher density residential and half park space. The park space portion would be everything from Rocky Branch Trail to the front parking areas of the DHHS complex. The residential development would create the necessary tax base to pay off the Dix purchase.

  28. I think there would be a higher proportion of folks living downtown if we had more supply of residences. And I emphasize, more units priced so that normal people can afford them, too.
    Because, really–eventually Raleigh’s gonna run out of rich people who can afford 2800/month for a two room apartment. I mean, Really!!
    Get us more reasonable-priced apartments, condos and so forth into downtown, and that 1% could easily go way way up.
    There’s NO lack of interest in living downtown, but there’s a major lack of opportunity!

  29. There are plenty of existing places you can live downtown, that don’t cost thousands of dollars. Not everyone gets to live in a new residense, with all new amenities.

    You and a lot of other people can live downtown and around downtown. Most people aren’t willing to live in these areas. For one reason or another.

    You don’t always have to tear something down and put something new in its place. Sometimes you have work with what you’ve got. In order for people to see the potential in what’s already there.

  30. Chad, I think Rob’s point was that, while there are reasonably priced apartments/houses downtown, most of them are occupied. I’ve looked! Pretty much ALL of the newer complexes being built are ridiculously overpriced. Most ONE BEDROOM apartments START at a grand a month. I don’t care if you live in Raleigh or New York City, that’s ridiculous. Just because it is the norm nowadays, does NOT mean it’s acceptable.

  31. I get that. I was referring to moving into a less than desirable neighborhood. Oakwood wasn’t always the place to be. A few people, saw the potential in the area. They cleaned it up and put some pride back into a less desirable area. Eventually more and more people took notice. Before you knew it the neighborhood had transformed into one of the most desirable areas to live in, in downtown.

    The same can be said about Mordecai, Boylan Heights, and Brooklyn.

    Be the change. Help create another trendy neiborhood. Before you know it the developers will have a new favorite area to build overpriced apartments.

    One last thing. Nowadays, it’s actually cheaper to own a property than it is to rent. Especially in the areas that you may have not considered. As a realtor I would advise you to sit down with a lender to see just what your options may be. It’s free and you may be surprised at what you find out.

  32. Jake—exactly. The few (and far between) inexpensive places are either occupied, or in a place where you might get shot if you step outside your door at night. Everything that’s been built in the past 5 years? All luxury stuff for people make six digits. That’s not a sustainable way to keep residential moving in a positive direction. And it’s creates quite a wide gap…you’ll have the poor & dangerous side of downtown, and then there will be the rich and unattainable side. Not exactly the way I want my city to move, after being a resident and downtown enthusiast for over 18 years. (sigh)

  33. So now I’m going to have to chime in on this. In the last 4 years, I have rented and now own a home in the Thompson Hunter neighborhood. (http://www.thompson-hunter.org/) We’re located east of Moore Square, EMO Raleigh for all you hip people.

    I’ve recently become active in the neighborhood association, helping to get information to residents, plan events, and see what good we can do for the neighborhood. There is a perception problem for areas east of downtown that needs to be updated.

    At one point, years ago, the area had some pretty heavy crime activity. Today, the perception lingers but the crime has greatly been reduced. Sure, if you leave your car unlocked with your GPS installed, probably not very smart and it’s going to get taken. This ‘crime of opportunity’ exists everywhere even in the higher income neighborhoods all around downtown Raleigh.

    I went to this week’s South Central CAC meeting and our community officer had about a dozen to a 1.5 dozen 911 calls on one sheet of paper for the last month’s time. He noted most of the calls were for noise, petty larceny, and minor drug related incidents. Nothing worse then that. This is tame and not consistent for the ‘dangerous’ perception that exists outside of the area.

    I challenge anyone who thinks that downtown is unaffordable to do a little homework and look to the neighborhoods to the east and the south. Don’t confuse dangerous with uncomfortable or perception with reality.

    I’ll admit, a few houses in the single-digits, have been built/renovated and are listing for $400k+ but those are rare. The bulk of the new single-family homes in the area are listed between $140K-$220K. I would think that a modest income with a decent down payment could get you one of these homes.

    If rentals are what you are looking for, then these times are tough cause of the huge demand in Raleigh which is driving up prices. I can very much see that.

    Things are changing east side. I invite anyone to a neighborhood meetup or CAC meeting to find out.

  34. Interesting reading! Let’s hope the shift towards younger residents means we get more and better bars, restaurants and nightlife. It’s getting better, but would still love to see more variety.

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