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West Apartments Times II

It’s been two years since we first heard about the West Apartments, one of a number of new 5-6 story apartment buildings to be built downtown.  As talk shifted to Greg Sandreuter’s 23-story Skyhouse Apartments announced a year ago, the buzz seemed to die down regarding his smaller 7-story apartment building next to the present West at North condos.

West Apartments II

But now there is another West Apartments, West Apartments II being planned for that same track of land on the northeastern edge of Glenwood South.  I haven’t seen anything about it in the news, but the site plan suddenly appeared a few months ago on the City’s website.

WestI&II copy


If everything happens as planned, that’s a combined total of 500 units on a few acres of land, one of the highest residential densities in downtown Raleigh.

 – 170 units   West at North Condos

–  153 units   West Apartments

–  177 units   West Apartments II

–  500 units   Total




I see these new apartment buildings together with the new roadway connections associated with the Peace Street Bridge replacement beginning a wave of redevelopment that promises to change the landscape of Glenwood South’s Northeast Corner.


“Generation Rent” pushing demand for Downtown apartments

You’ve probably noticed the constructions sites that have sprung up everywhere you look in downtown, from Cameron Village to St Mary’s, to Hillsborough Street.  Having seen past booms that saturated the market with too much office space, too many spec homes and condos that sat empty, some are questioning the wisdom of developers who have jumped into the present apartment building craze.  Here is some perspective for the next time this comes up in a conversation with other downtowners…

This time is different!

Developers and the banks behind them are not taking risky bets this time.  Developers are focusing only on rental units, catering to ‘Generation Rent’.  And Raleigh is part of a national trend, as downtowns have begun growing faster than suburbs for the first time in 100 years!

Rents will not be cheap given downtown land prices, but unit sizes are smaller (lots of one bedrooms), and most important – no downpayment required!  After seeing the generation before them loose so much equity in their homes, renting appeals to young professionals who want more freedom and mobility.

Many of the apartment buildings underway (or planned) fall into the 5-6 story category, which keeps building cost per square foot down compared to taller buildings.  And they’re also mostly located on the periphery of downtown, where land prices are a bit more reasonable.

The one big exception is the recently announced Skyhouse Apartments, which is 23 stories and located in the heart of Downtown’s Raleigh’s business district.  It’s too soon to see if others will follow this lead and bring out more ambitious projects, but it’s worth noting that Charter Square  after some time is finally being actively leased.

Late last year this blog included a post on the planned apartment projects in or near downtown Raleigh.  So how are these projects coming along six months later?

Recently announced

Started construction
Active – construction not yet started
No activity?


If you have any updated information on any of these projects or ones we may have missed, please let our readers know.

Kane’s buying up more Glenwood South property, and sources say grocery store deal is close

John Kane has just bought another swath of land on the northeast side of Glenwood South.  The new property is located behind his proposed 12-story mixed use building at the corner of Peace and West Streets, previously owned by Gregg Sandreuter.  Gregg was the developer of the North at West condos, and had filed plans several years ago to build two apartment buildings on this site (West Apartments I & II).  Let’s hope Kane has plans for something bigger and better … downtown has enough 6 story apartment buildings.

And this Triangle Business Journal article says that Kane is “close to a deal with Public Super Markets” to become the anchor store for his property at the corner of Peace and West Streets.

The map below shows the location of Kane’s current property, and most recent purchase.

Want to rent in downtown Raleigh? You’ll soon have SIX new apartment buildings from which to choose.

In response to dropping rates in homeownership, developers in downtown Raleigh are scrambling to keep up with demands for rental units.  Nationally, each 1% drop in the homeownership rate brings more than a million new renters into the U.S. market, and supply hasn’t kept pace.   Six new apartment complexes are expected to become available in downtown Raleigh within the next year or two, most having site plans already approved by the city.


Get ready for more than 1,300 new rental units on the market! 

Click to enlargeAll the plans are for mixed-use projects with ground floor retail and all are located within a mile of each other on the western side of downtown.  They include three complexes in Glenwood South, two in Cameron Village and one between Glenwood South and NCSU.

Project details are listed below.  For more information and images, use the links provided to download each site plan.


Residences at Cameron Village (400-410 Oberlin Road)

This mixed use building is located on the northeast corner of Oberlin Road and Clark Avenue in Cameron Village.  The 5-6 story building will house 296 residential units, ground floor retail, and a 450-space parking deck.  Demolition of the existing building has recently started and construction is expected to begin in Spring 2012, to be completed by Spring 2013.

The site plan (SP-47-10) has been approved. [download]


Cameron Village Apartments (401 Oberlin Road)

This mixed-use development is located directly adjacent to Cameron Village, across the street from The Residences at Cameron Village (above).  The 4-5 story building includes 260 residential units, first floor office and commercial retail, with a parking deck behind the building.

The site plan has not yet been submitted. 

425 Boylan Avenue
This mixed-use building is located on the southwest corner of the intersection of North Boylan Avenue and Tucker Street.  The 7 story building will include 250 residential units,  commercial space along Tucker Street, and a 328-space parking deck.
West Morgan Street Apartments
This project includes two buildings, located on West Morgan and Hillsborough Streets.  The 5 story buildings will house a combined 250 residential units, 32 town houses along Ashe Street, retail/office space and two 334-space (combined) parking decks.  Construction is expected to begin Spring 2012.
The site plan (SP-15-11) has been approved. [download]


West Apartments (413 N Harrington Street)

This 7 story building will be built on the lot adjacent to the West at North Condos, and includes 153 residential units and a 192-space parking deck.

The site plan (SP-36-11) is awaiting approval. [download]


St. Mary’s Square (600 St. Mary’s Street)
This mixed-use building is located on the north side of West Johnson Street, between Gaston Street and St Mary’s Street.  The 5-6 story building includes 145 residential units, ground floor retail along West Johnson Street, office space along St Mary’s Street , and a 143-space parking deck.  Demolition of the existing funeral home is expected to start soon, with the building completed in Fall 2012.
The site plan (SP-14-11) has been approved. [download]


The face of Raleigh’s downtown is changing as it adapts to the present economy.  Demand for homes continues to increase, and a proliferation of choices insures growth, vitality and diversity as Raleigh meets the needs of the present, and looks to the future.

A New Definition of Neighborhood in Glenwood South

What do you think of when you think of NEIGHBORHOOD? Driveways intersecting sidewalks like markings on a ruler? Lawns manicured and uniform? Two story houses with shuttered windows and automatic garage doors?

It occurred to me last Thursday as the crowd gathered on Tucker Street to see the Gravy Boys at Shop Local Raleigh’s Glenwood Live concert series, that I was looking at a new concept of neighborhood. Here young families picnicked on blankets spread across the grass, while 20 somethings sat on the curbs with dogs at their feet, and elderly people – some in wheel chairs – ventured out into the street from Glenwood Towers (public housing for seniors). There was craft beer, synchronized head bobbing and a diverse community joined by the shared enjoyment of answering the call of rhythms softly knocking at their apartment and condo windows.

Glenwood South is a neighborhood of small business owners, apartment renters and condo owners, who create – day by day – a picture of inclusivity, compromise and above all, possibility.

So how would we define neighborhood?

We’d say that small living spaces work. It keeps us streamlined, and aligns with our idea that sharing resources is the way to go. Sharing cars, taking public transportation, and even congregating in communal living and office areas feels energizing and allows for people of like minds to collaborate.

We’d say that we value knowing that as needs pop up, we’ll meet them together. A few weeks ago, the Glenwood South Neighborhood Collaborative met to consider how we could create green spaces in our neighborhood, and promote ideas that could be immediately incorporated into the long range plan for Raleigh. We want to see our Pigeon Creek uncovered and to be able to walk in a park setting that extends from Peace Street along West Street, and we want to be able to dip into a small, urban sized grocery store so we don’t have to get into cars to drive to Harris Teeter for milk.

We love the relationships that have developed between business owners and residents. Hampton Inn has become our neighborhood living room. Whether it’s hosting our neighborhood meetings, or having art receptions for local BEST artists, or even sharing their pool and gym with residents from 510 Glenwood, it’s like Cheers. They know us by name.

204ab881ac4de7954b3cd31eb0c8ec6aAnd of course, there’s public art. Last winter, one hundred fifty tree sweaters started a dialogue that has just continued with the chalkboard poetry wall (at the former Clark Art building at 300 Glenwood Ave), where every few weeks a new collection of favorite quotes and poetry from the neighborhood are highlighted. This fall we’ll be banding together again to create whimsical, miniature urban art that will transform water spouts, sidewalk cracks and the occasional fence post.

We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished through our collaboration: especially developing a noise ordinance that promotes communication and cooperation between business owners and residents; prompting improved street lighting and repaired sidewalks through working with the city; and partnering with organizations like the DLA, DRA and Shop Local Raleigh to maximize the impact of our ideas and efforts.

But most of all, it just feels good to walk down the street and greet people, who like me, see these familiar sidewalks, restaurants and shops as our front yard. The sometimes hum of outdoor music reminds me of being a child in my darkened bedroom, reassured by the sounds of my parents still awake down in the kitchen. I like seeing the construction going on that promises more new apartments, businesses and restaurants. There’s a feeling that this is just the beginning, but the framework has been established. We’re creating a new definition of neighborhood that will morph as we do, honoring our diversity, our quirks and our passion for living downtown.

Written by Donna Belt

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