The Rise of RBC Plaza Through Time

One year and a few weeks ago from now, the crown of RBC Plaza was lit up. There was good discussion on the blog that day so jump back in time and re-live it. Digging through my photo archives, I found lots of pictures of the tower under construction. Here is a small collection showing the tower grow from nothing to 500+ feet high.

View of the construction site from Fayetteville Street on October 19th, 2006.

The tall red crane is being put together on January 20, 2007.

The lower floors for parking are under construction on June 26th, 2007.

The building starts to make a dent in the skyline, showing its blue glass on December 12th, 2007.

RBC Plaza has now topped out and more glass follows its way to the top on April 12th, 2008.

The crown is being put together on April 27th, 2008.

RBC Plaza now towers at the top of the Raleigh skyline.

The Forgotten Wayfinding Sign

In the picture above, there is a downtown Raleigh relic. An old sign that has been in its place for many years, standing the test of time. Actually, I have no idea how long this sign has been here but from the looks of it, it was put up long ago and now completely forgotten. I’m talking about the sign on the Capitol Blvd. bridge over Peace St. that can be seen when heading west. It points towards Cameron Village and leads cars in the ‘up’ direction. It is old, rusty, faded and needs to be replaced. It’s too bad we did not get another one along with the many others placed around downtown as part of the wayfinding system. Perhaps no one is heading towards Cameron Village when on Peace St. or maybe we don’t need it at all?

I’m sure many of you have driven under the bridge many times and have never noticed it. Come on, you can admit it.

Time Capsule Buried In Downtown Raleigh

Next to the sidewalks of Salisbury Street, there is this plaque on the ground that states the following:





The church is on the corner of Salisbury and Morgan Streets if anyone is interested in looking for it. 2076 is quite a ways out so pass this along to your kids so that they can see it being opened on our country’s 300th birthday.

Go Canes!

I’ll be at the game tonight, game 3. There is such a great energy in this city when the canes make the playoffs and I’m having fun going along for the ride. It will never touch the college basketball scene around here but maybe one day every regular season game will be on the TVs at bars and restaurants each night, no questions asked. I don’t want to continue to beat the downtown arena idea even more but while making tailgating plans earlier today, I had a thought. I think the tailgating culture out at the RBC center is great but would definitely die out if the arena was in an urban area.

Downtown Arena Comes Back

The announcement of this should be soon but a draft plan and design for a new downtown arena is being made. Rumor has it that certain empty downtown parcels have been bought up and will be used for its construction. There still is no word on who is backing this project but sources have told me some interesting details.

Three lots are being saved for this enormous project: the old site of The Hillsborough on Hillsborough St., one of the empty lots on the Edison site, and the empty land next to the convention center, where the city planned to build an amphitheater. Refer to the map for a visual. Sources described the new arena as a ‘radically designed sky high’ sporting venue. The venue was designed with the area’s focus on technology in mind so the lead architect wanted to display that in this ‘futuristic sporting orb’.

The three land parcels will contain the bases for the legs of the arena, almost like a giant tripod. The venue, seating a capacity of 45,000 people, will be inside a sphere-like building that sits 2,000 feet above the intersection of Salisbury and Martin St. The large seating capacity was specifically chosen to accommodate the area’s growing population and will be usable for hundreds of years. Parking issues have also been taken into consideration. As one source said, “Everyone seems to be against parking lots on the ground, so we are taking it to the air. When flying cars are the norm, so will floating parking decks. There’s just more room in the air then on the ground.”

I’m absolutely stunned at this information and look forward to seeing the official renderings. We should see the Canes play in the new arena when construction ends, which is planned to be around 2030-2032.