Carolina Ale House under construction in Glenwood South

Many downtown residents have taken great interest in Raleigh’s current long range planning process, but all it takes is a walk down any street to see that growth and development are already booming.  Everywhere I look there’s new construction going on, from skyscrapers emerging out of parking lots to small up-fits. These are clear signs that a downtown resurgence is underway.

As with the last upturn, the flurry of activity is being led by a surge of new residents.  Only this time the supply of new homes is geared for apartment renters rather than condo owners, a less risky financial commitment for both the investor and renter.

As a long time resident, I’ve witnessed frantic buyers snapping up new condos when demand was on the upswing back in 2005-2007, and just a few years later I watched the wave of auctions as building owners unloaded properties when demand cratered.  After 5-6 quiet years, demand has now come back and I feel vitality and excitement in the air.  For instance, I overhear at Harris Teeter and local coffee shops people talking about the new restaurants and businesses that now border Cameron Village.  The reluctance over increased traffic that dominated chat just a year ago, has seemingly drifted into a shared optimism.

I live in Glenwood South, so the revitalization going on in my neighborhood is particularly gratifying.  Already home to six large condo/apt buildings, it seems that there is an announcement about another new building breaking ground every few months.

Since 425 Devon started leasing a few months ago, and the crane for the Link Apartments was just put in place, preparations are now underway for the ground breaking of The Gramercy Apartments on North Street.

And what always happens when new residents arrive? Restaurants and shops begin to open.

The list of recent openings and new construction in Glenwood South is pretty amazing.

Recent openings

North Street Beer Station

Honor Raleigh Men’s Boutique

Aroma Hookah Bar (formerly Runway Couture)

Stags Head

Eden lounge (formerly Oryx)

Aiko Bar & Lounge

Shucker’s Oyster Bar & Grill

Under construction

Storm Clouds Brewery

Carolina Ale House

Beer Garden

Taverna Agora (Next to 2nd Empire)

Big Boom

Just announced

Pho Pho Noodle Kitchen

State of Beer (Across from 2nd Empire)

2014 is a great time to live in Raleigh, and it’s just going to get better from here.  What I particularly like is the consciousness of downtown residents who are in place to help shape development as it comes.  The city has involved residents in the long range planning, and continues to respond to feedback so that Raleigh can strike a balance of green space, transportation and services to maximize the quality of life for all.

So come on down.  Living space is available, small businesses booming with unique offerings, neighbors are friendly, and it’s just a fun, alive place where you can live and work.