Pic of the Week

Photo by @oakcitydylan

Demolition is taking place on the western half of the site named Bloc 83. By the time you read this, the site along the southern side of the 600 block of Hillsborough Street may already be cleared out.

This is the second-half development that will pair up with the already open One Glenwood. For a refresher of what is to come here, jump back to this November 2018 post about the development named Two Hillsborough.

I’m certainly missing the Esso Gas Station that stood at the corner and had one of my favorite bars, Dram and Draught. However, I’m happy to see new urban-style development that should be a part of the Raleigh of the future which makes transit-use more feasible and even brings about even more retail and restaurant space.

Dram and Draught has moved into One Glenwood and should re-open soon.

Finally, for nostalgia’s sake, I’ve got a snap of the Esso Gas Station in 2015 after it was renovated but before the bar set up shop in it.

Corner of Hillsborough and Boylan. August 2015.

Pic of the Week

One Glenwood,┬áthe first tower of Bloc 83, is really starting to wrap up along Glenwood Avenue. The sidewalks are basically open and the lobbies are mostly finished. All that’s needed is some furniture.

Once the tenants have their spaces ready, the building should really start adding activity to the southern end of Glenwood South. Next to watch is the Origin Hotel right across Morgan Street.

One Glenwood + Two Hillsborough + Parking Deck = Bloc 83

700 block of Hillsborough Street. October 2018.

700 block of Hillsborough Street. October 2018.

More renderings and plans are being submitted for the Heritage Properties developments along Hillsborough Street. Readers might already be familiar with the soon-to-be-completed office tower, One Glenwood, and the second tower is coming soon with Two Hillsborough. The two towers will have a plaza in between, mid-block, with retail supporting a lively sense of place.

The latest renderings show the two towers with the plaza in between.

Rendering of the Bloc 83 development.

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The collection of towers is being called Bloc 83 according to the latest submissions. The third piece of the puzzle is a parking deck with ground-floor retail. Located on the 700 block of Hillsborough Street, the former auto shop and next-door house are slated to be removed for the new deck. The deck’s 693 spaces are most likely going to support Bloc 83. You can spy the deck in the renderings above.

The site plan looks pretty typical but with retail along both Hillsborough Street and a part of Boylan. Entrances to the deck will be on both Hillsborough and Boylan Avenue. Below is a snapshot of that site plan.

SIte plan of the Bloc 83 parking deck along the 700 block of Hillsborough Street.

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I can’t help but roll my eyes at more parking decks especially when you consider that one has already been built behind the Origin Hotel across Morgan by the same developers. I believe between the two decks there will over 1,000 spaces provided.

However, as I look at the plans and where we’re coming from, the new office towers moves the needle just a little bit towards a more urban and transit-friendly Raleigh. The parking decks are just a bridge that helps us connect to the rest of the region.

The way retail space really surrounds the outside and inside of Bloc 83, even in the parking deck, feels hugely positive. If the landlords can land some service retail and add to downtown’s plentiful list of tasty places to eat then by all means, bring it on.

The vibe on the Community is a tad negative over another parking deck but does give more reason to support pro-transit and pro-bike orgs to keep the mobility options varied in and around downtown Raleigh. As for me, I’m seeing a future where I spend more time in this area compared to what was there and I think others may agree also.

As One Glenwood wraps up over the next few months, I expect work on the rest of Bloc 83 to take place in 2019.