Plans for Smokey Hollow Phase 2 Bring More Residential and Office to Glenwood South

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2. Click for larger.

While the community actively watches the first phase of Smokey Hollow rise out of the ground along Peace Street, plans for more buildings have been submitted. Phase 2 will contain additional buildings along West and Harrington Streets with residential and office components.

The highlights:

  • 280 Residential units
  • 225,000 sq. ft. of office space
  • 40,000 sq. ft. of ground floor retail

The rendering above shows the key pieces of the second phase of the three-phase project for the area. With phase 1 (currently under construction) delivering the anchor, a Publix grocery store, phase 2 brings more community and placemaking around it with an office tower, more retail spaces, and overall just a more interesting place to be.

It looks like West Street will become a residential street with the addition of a five-story building. The new building will stretch from the West at North tower all the way to the new Johnson Street intersection. Retail spaces will be mixed along West with even more along a new private drive that goes through the development.

The “intersection” of Tucker and West will have a private drive that cuts through to Harrington as well as pedestrian-only plaza towards Johnson. Here, more retail and outdoor spaces will be made to create a sense of place. The renderings below will help to visualize the concept.

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2, West Street at Tucker St. Click for larger.

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2, Retail along the “interior”. Click for larger.

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2, Retail along the “interior”. Click for larger.

All of this should drastically improve the sidewalk experience in the area. West and Harrington will become two key urban streets, something we’ve discussed before, and Smokey Hollow basically becomes the northern gateway to downtown Raleigh. In the future, as a BRT line goes through this area, the flow of people through it will become more obvious.

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2

Rendering of Smokey Hollow Phase 2. Click for larger.

Tightening the fabric between Smokey Hollow and the rest of Glenwood South would really make the area lively and I’m hoping that the office tower does very well. More workers could really bring more streetlife to the daytime hours here and give Glenwood South that 24-7 feel. Mix in the future Devereux Meadow park north of Peace and the area should really take off!

More to come on this one for sure!

A Walk Around Smokey Hollow

Corner of West and Peace. June 2018.

Corner of West and Peace. June 2018.

With two cranes now operating over the Smokey Hollow site, I thought it would be a great time to walk around and check things out on a nice June evening. Nearby, the new Capital Boulevard bridge is also being worked on and it seems like all of these things are part of a wave that wants to open around the same time.

First, we need to review the new street configuration coming to this area. Parts of Harrington Street have been removed while Johnson Street will become reconnected. See the before and after maps below.

Map of Smokey Hollow area before 2018.

Map of Smokey Hollow area before 2018.

Map of Smokey Hollow area after 2018.

Map of Smokey Hollow area after 2018. (square loop not included)

The “Harrington Curve” is now gone and instead extends the street to Peace. At the intersection of Johnson and Harrington, you can see the future extension as the buildings have been cleared. Here’s where the walk starts staring to the north.

Intersection of Harrington and Johnson. June 2018.

Intersection of Harrington and Johnson. June 2018.

Getting to West from this point is basically a pedestrian/bike only alley as the new Johnson Street connection isn’t in place yet.

Along West Street heading north to Peace, we can start to see the buildings of Peace at West starting to come up. What was once an area of suburban-style, one-story buildings will now have 12-story towers along new urban sidewalk. The change will be quite dramatic and there’s plenty of space for more.

West Street near Johnson Street. June 2018.

West Street near Johnson Street. June 2018.

The building is just starting to rise up so you still have to use a little imagination to get a sense of what the intersection of Peace and West will look like in the future. Soon, Peace Street will start to resemble its future self as more lanes open up as part of the bridge construction.

Enjoy that view looking southeast while you can cause this building will go up fast!

West Street at Peace. June 2018.

West Street at Peace. June 2018.

There are temporary lights at the future new intersection of Harrington and Peace where you can look towards the south at the beginning of this walk. No doubt, Peace at West will hug some prominent streets, basically all the ones we’ve discussed.

Peace at the future intersection with Harrington. June 2018.

Peace at the future intersection with Harrington. June 2018.

New Capital Boulevard bridge over Peace. June 2018.

New Capital Boulevard bridge over Peace. June 2018.

Getting back to our starting point takes us south straight down the future Harrington Street to its intersection with Johnson. The Rollins Cleaners and other older buildings are still up on the eastern side but that may not be a surprise as demolishing a dry cleaner typically involves extensive environmental cleanup efforts that take years. I wouldn’t be surprised if that is the case at this site.

Buildings along Peace Street. June 2018.

Buildings along Peace Street. June 2018.

Future Harrington Street. June 2018.

Future Harrington Street. June 2018.

We’ll check back in later for sure!

Join the conversation on this project over at the DTRaleigh Community.

Revisiting The Downtown Plan’s Glenwood Green Project Area

View from the upper floors of the West at North Tower. Photo credit Robert Winchester

View looking north from the upper floors of the West at North Tower. Photo credit Robert Winchester.

There has been a lot to follow around the Smokey Hollow area of Glenwood South. The reader-submitted photo above shows another view of all the demolition that has taken place. The “Glenwood Green” area has basically been wiped clean and will be rebuilt over the coming years.

The term Glenwood Green comes from the 2015 downtown Raleigh plan and I thought this a good time to see if the planned developments are in line with what was envisioned for the area.

Here’s what we know so far:

  • Peace (formerly Smokey Hollow) – 400 unit residential tower with ground-floor retail at the corner of Peace and West Street. A Publix grocery store has been announced so far.
  • Directly to the south, the same developers have bought land for a phase 2 mixed-use project.
  • Smokey Hollow. Courtesy of Cline Design.

    Latest rendering of the development for Peace and West

    By the way, the name of the development may have changed from Smokey Hollow to Peace but this blog will always recognize this area and basically any new developments going forward as part of Smokey Hollow.

    Let’s map it all. I like this one from Raleigh DLA.

    Map of planned developments in Smokey Hollow

    Glenwood Green Vision

    The Glenwood Green vision as part of the 2015 downtown plan so far is coming along. Granted, not much “green” has been planned in this area but once the Capital Boulevard bridge project (the square loop) is finished in 2019, the city can deliver that green with a planned Devereux Meadows Park north of Peace Street.

    Here’s the two-page overview of the Glenwood Green vision.
    Glenwood Green project area - 2015 Downtown Plan

    Click for larger

    The vision overview behind Glenwood Green wants Harrington Street to be a new “main street” for the area. This should be where the majority of retail is located and the planning folks have shown us this in their latest update of retails streets in the 2030 Comprehensive Plan.

    Harrington Street has the opportunity to be the gateway from the Devereux Meadows Park through Smokey Hollow and into the Warehouse District.

    Notice that Kane Realty has projects at both ends of this street. (All the Smokey Hollow work + The Dillon) Not a coincidence I’m thinking here.

    Public Space and Greenway Connections

    What still isn’t being talked about is the idea of a central plaza in Smokey Hollow to really give this area a sense of place. In addition, a greenway or urban cycle track connecting parts north and south would run through this area with this public space being the central hub.

    The vision in the downtown plan proposes a civic building and plaza but something else could work to make it into a destination. A park could also serve as a meeting place and destination.

    When you add up the plans for a greenway through Devereux Meadows, the city experimenting with a cycle-track along West Street, and connectivity from the Warehouse District to Dix Park, you can really see how important Smokey Hollow is to north/south connectivity through downtown Raleigh.

    If you look at the latest map of the Raleigh Greenway system, there’s a core loop around downtown and the surrounding neighborhoods. We still don’t have that middle section that cuts through it. The Glenwood Green vision supports this major connection.

    Raleigh Greenway system, January 2018

    Raleigh Greenway system, January 2018. Click for larger

    A proposed route from Smokey Hollow to the north towards the current greenway exists. A lot of it would run through Devereux Meadows alongside Capital Boulevard. This was talked about as part of the Capital Boulevard Corridor Study, an effort that took place around 2011. Here’s a map of the proposed greenway route connecting areas north of downtown.

    Right now, there hasn’t been talk of incorporating that civic space or greenway into Smokey Hollow. Those interested in creating a vibrant area here should keep an eye out because as all this development starts, the opportunities for the connections decrease.

    If all the land is dedicated to buildings then the idea of a public plaza becomes significantly harder to plan for. The greenway connection may also turn into a glorified sidewalk path rather than something unique.

    As plans form, I look to the city to work with developers to get this built and see the vision behind Glenwood Green come to full form.

The Second Clearing of Smokey Hollow

Email readers: This blog post has a virtual reality image. Read the post on the blog to see it.
Standing on Capital Boulevard looking west, December 2017.

Click for larger

One day, I was riding south into downtown on Capital Boulevard and caught a glimpse to the west towards Glenwood South. The clearing of so many buildings just struck me and I had to come back to take some photos. This would have really been nice to have a drone for this post but either way the photo above attempts to show how much has been cleared.

Between Johnson and Peace, Capital and West Streets almost all buildings have been demolished this year. With the help of iMaps, I estimate about 6.5 acres have been cleared in just this area.

History repeats itself?

Well, probably not. A residential neighborhood, the late Smoky Hollow, isn’t being cleared again but the state is still flexing its eminent domain muscle for highway improvements. Let’s hope this time it sticks.

Map of area between Peace and Johnson, West and Capital Boulevard.

Click for larger. Note the new Johnson Street connection already planned for. Next, the Harrington connection to Peace.

The photo is from the west side of Capital Boulevard with the new bridge over Peace Street directly to my right. I will probably not be able to get an exact after-shot once that project is complete but I’ll certainly try. (safely)

First to watch is the 12-story residential tower called Peace, formerly Smokey Hollow, at the corner of West and Peace Street. It was announced that a Publix grocery store would anchor the ground-floor space of this project. I bet that’s a huge selling point for more development in this area.

That’s all that’s confirmed at this time but I’m sure there will be more coming and with it all currently zoned for a maximum of 12-stories, an entirely new neighborhood (dare I say Smoky Hollow?) could be created with that kind of density. (by Raleigh standards anyway)

For more views, here’s a VR shot I took while up there. If you can’t see the embedded VR view, try seeing it directly on the blog.

[UPDATE: 12-19-17, a RalCon reader has submitted a different view of the area from the 510 Glenwood building.]
View of the area looking east, December 2017.

Click for larger

A Walk Up Peace Street

Peace Street, September 2017

Peace Street, September 2017

Warning! (or treat!) This will be an image-heavy post.

I had the pleasure of taking a walk up Peace Street recently, during rush hour, to witness all the demolition and work taking place around the Capital Boulevard bridge. We’ve all been following the work in this area for awhile but when you walk it, it’s truly at another level.

I’ll write a little and then let the photos do the talking.

The Capital Boulevard work is really in full swing here as clearing for the new bridge over Peace Street takes place. Buildings have been demolished and old foundations chipped away to make way for the Square Loop.

At this time, construction fencing is up around the Smokey Hollow site. Even more demolition should be taking place in the coming weeks for the 12-story mixed-use project.

In the pipeline also is the West Peace Street Streetscape project, adding more chaos to the street in the future.

It’s a swarm of development in such a short amount of time. The end of 2019 should see all the street work wrap up for us to enjoy it.

I’m starting to think that the state’s Capital Boulevard project would be this decade’s most impactful public-funded project taking place in downtown Raleigh. (Fayetteville Street being the clear winner in the 2000s) I wanted it to be Union Station but so much is going on here that I think this edges it out.

Peace Street, September 2017

Peace Street, September 2017. The former Fairway Advertising.

Peace Street, September 2017

Peace Street, September 2017.

Peace Street, September 2017

Peace Street, September 2017.

Peace Street, September 2017

Peace Street, September 2017. The former Finch’s restaurant.

Peace Street, September 2017

Peace Street, September 2017.

Peace Street, September 2017

Peace Street, September 2017.

Peace Street, September 2017

Peace Street, September 2017. Construction fencing around Smokey Hollow.

Peace Street, September 2017

West Street, September 2017. Construction fencing around Smokey Hollow.

Peace Street, September 2017

West Street, September 2017. Construction fencing around Smokey Hollow.

Peace Street, September 2017

Johnson and Harrington Street, September 2017. Construction fencing around Smokey Hollow and future Johnson Street connector.

Capital Boulevard area, September 2017

Capital Boulevard area, September 2017. Clearing of buildings for the square loop.

Capital Boulevard area, September 2017

Capital Boulevard area, September 2017. Clearing of buildings for the square loop.

Capital Boulevard area, September 2017

Capital Boulevard area, September 2017. Clearing of buildings for the square loop.

Capital Boulevard area, September 2017

Capital Boulevard area, September 2017. Clearing of buildings for the square loop.

The Apartment Mid-rise Boom is Fading in Downtown Raleigh

The Dillon Apartments on Hargett Street

It hit me recently during a conversation in a downtown coffee shop that The Metropolitan apartments would have seen residents moving in this month. If you don’t know the history, the project, while under construction, met an unfortunate fate and went up in flames in March of this year.

The developers plan to rebuild and the site is currently being cleared.

If it wasn’t for the fire delaying the delivery of The Metropolitan, we could easily see the end to the multi-unit, mid-rise apartment product line in downtown Raleigh. At least for the foreseeable future.

Site of The Metropolitan Apartments fire site.

Site of The Metropolitan Apartments fire site

Barring any new project announcements, the apartment pipeline would have ended with The Dillon opening in 2018. Taking a look at the latest list of projects released by the Downtown Raleigh Alliance, we can see that there are no planned projects similar to these.

To be clear, I’m referring to the 5-7 story, wood-construction buildings with a larger footprint. Typically to make these work, developers have had to acquire multiple properties and combine them.

That’s not to say the residential projects aren’t flowing. The product is just changing.

Smokey Hollow plans to bring 445 residential units in a 12-story building on Peace Street. FNB Tower will mix up office and 247 residential units across 22 stories. 400H will also mix office and 220 units in a 20-story building. Details are still light on 301 Hillsborough but with a similar style to the other projects there’s no reason to guess that more residential units could be included.

That’s 900 units across three projects right there.

Rendering of 400H

Most recent rendering of 400H

The other side of the picture is the rise in townhome projects. These are adding infill to the periphery of downtown. Currently under construction, we have:

115 townhomes are in the works and more are in the planning stages.

Perhaps we’re at a point where combining multiple parcels for large footprint developments isn’t economically feasible for mid-rise buildings. There could be other changes in the market that are affecting this. Downtown could also be much more livable than before, enticing buyers to purchase units than rent.

Maybe there is a hold on projects as plans for a downtown soccer stadium and big infrastructure changes to Capital Boulevard need to pan out for developers to pitch new projects.

You could look at it from a lot of angles. It’s certainly a great topic to discuss.