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carolinaboy

The Albemarle Region (Northeastern NC)

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I would like to share with UP the Albemarle Region of NC. This region is in the northeast corner of the state and is directly south of the Norfolk-Virginia Beach metro area.

According to new figures released by the US Census Bureau, the region contains 3 of the top 10 fastest growing counties in NC from 200-2005 (Camden, Currituck and Dare). The region is also home to some beautiful small towns and cities (Elizabeth City, Edenton, Hertford, Manteo).

I will be keeping UP updated with pictures, development news and other interesting items from the region.

I hope you will enjoy seeing the area. Soon I will post some maps, pictures, etc. :thumbsup:

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Please post as many pics and share what you know about the northeast corner of the state. I myself have only been out there ONE time so thats a bit of a gray area for me, North Carolina wise.

Ive noticed a lot of new residential development north of E-City towards Chesapeake along US 17. The long term NCDOT plans are to make US 17 a freeway north of teh E-City bypass since it is currently an expressway (no private driveway access/at grade intersections with no signals) right now. NC 168 south into NC from Chesapeake has a lot of untapped waterfront property all teh way down to US 158 so it will be interesting what happens out there and what NCDOT will do the corridor since it is currently a 4 to 5 lane arterial/boulevard.

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It will be interesting to see what happens in the next 5-10 years in the region. With the growth in Hampton Roads moving south and the growth in this area moving north the various highways (17, 168) will certainly be busy. Not to mention the anticipated traffic (commerce) expected when the ports in Norfolk and Portsmouth expand.

So many people are moving here now NCDOT should have some plans in place. I guess we'll see :whistling:

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I always found it curious that the town of Albemarle isn't anywhere near this region.

I think the "Albemarle" region was named for one of the original colonial land grantees. Perhaps this person is also the namesake of the town of Albemarle. :unsure:

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I love this region! The area is very beautiful, just as the folks are very friendly.

I visited on business a few years ago, and had a good time exploring a few of the towns. Windsor, Edenton, and Elizabeth City are all nice places.

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Elizabeth City needs more hype. Not only is it one NC oldest and has a lot of history (ships used to be built there and was a popular port of call back in the post colonial days). I think they have some nice rowhouse neighborhoods there. Not very large but I think it is worth me going there next time I go home. I drove through on my way to Hampton. Edenton was nice as well. The way the town sits like two feet above the sound water line is crazy.

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Elizabeth City needs more hype. Not only is it one NC oldest and has a lot of history (ships used to be built there and was a popular port of call back in the post colonial days). I think they have some nice rowhouse neighborhoods there. Not very large but I think it is worth me going there next time I go home. I drove through on my way to Hampton. Edenton was nice as well. The way the town sits like two feet above the sound water line is crazy.

I would love to see that region & other parts of East NC get more hype as well too. Especially Fayetteville, Elizabeth City, Morehead city & Wilmington. But some of the residents that live here will have to break out of there rural ways & let urbanism make its way. Then you will see many place of the East Carolina grow. Probably grow larger the Charlotte, Raleigh, Greensboro because they have the ports & beach. Well Wilmington may have a chance. I could see Elizabeth City becoming a Portland, ME if city put there head together.

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I'd rather this region of the state stay undeveloped. It's part of it's charm. I don't want to see nice little towns like Edenton become overcrowded and slummed up.

I feel the same way about the mountain regions in the western part of NC.

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I'd rather this region of the state stay undeveloped. It's part of it's charm. I don't want to see nice little towns like Edenton become overcrowded and slummed up.

While I wouldn't say 'undeveloped', I think I mostly agree with you. When there has been development in the eastern part of the state recently, it's been pretty digustingly sprawling. Look at the sprawl around cities more down east: Greenville, Goldsboro, Fayetteville, Jacksonville... Wilmington's had a better mix than most, I guess, but still a lot of very irresponsible development.

I'm not that familiar with the Albemarle region, but I'm betting some these towns have been pretty desperately in need of economic stimulation, like many coastal plain towns. So they'll probably be less likely to force developers to do a good job. And while I'd love to see them have enough money to revitalize and expand their core areas, I'm pretty sure the price they'd pay in sprawl wouldn't be worth it. Maybe some visionary leaders will form some sort of regional authority to harness future growth before its too late?

When that massive paradigm shift in development mentality comes around, though, the eastern part of the state will be one of the area's I'm most excited about watching. Still waiting...

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I think the Eastern part of North Carolina needs more economic development, not in building new buildings or developing the land, but by reusing the many abandon structures in those areas, for jobs one of the main things. Since this is my home region, my home county Edgecombe County (population about 55,000) since the mid 90's has lost about 500 businesses and need more jobs. The main town and county seat of the county, Tarboro (population about 11,000) is believe it or not is 100% debt free, but need more jobs desperately too. And Edgecombe County is located in Northeastern North Carolina and sometimes consider part of the Albermarle area also. My opinion is yes, but not like the Piedmont region of the state

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I'm going to give it you guys plan & simple the region needs atleast 2-4 D1a big enrollment university to see a massive growth. I hope Cambell univ & UNC Prembroke could some how fulfill that economic dream for Fayetteville, but were growing just not as a fast rate as The Triangle, Charlotte region.

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In reality, Northeastern NC is and has been growing rapidly. According to the latest census data (2000-2005), this region has 2 of the fastest growing (by population percentage increase) counties in the NATION (Currituck and Camden).

Economic development has been increasing as well. Elizabeth City has seen some industrial growth and the housing development is insane all over the region. It is becoming expensive to live in Currituck, Camden and Pasquotank counties.

What you have to remember is we are the bedroom community for the Hampton Roads region of Virginia which has a population of 1.7 million people. Even though housing costs are high here, they are much cheaper than Hampton Roads. The taxes are much less and the availability of developable land is greater. All these factors have lead to the population increase.

Our transportation routes have been upgraded in anticipation of much more development from people and businesses coming from Hampton Roads.

I'm certainly not trying to compare this region to others in the state, but I think what happens here over the next 10 to 20 years will raise some eyebrows across the state.

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I certainly agree. NE North Carolina easily blends in with the Hampton Roads region, especially in where Chesapeake and NC meet. NE NC seems more Tidewater virginia than the rest of the state, and Hampton Roads seems more like NC than any other metro in VA

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Elizabeth City needs more hype. Not only is it one NC oldest and has a lot of history (ships used to be built there and was a popular port of call back in the post colonial days). I think they have some nice rowhouse neighborhoods there.

I've been through the area a few times; it's pretty gorgeous out there. Protect those rowhouse neighborhoods as well - they may be some of the last ones standing in NC.

I'd rather this region of the state stay undeveloped. It's part of it's charm. I don't want to see nice little towns like Edenton become overcrowded and slummed up.

I feel the same way about the mountain regions in the western part of NC.

Definitely not overcrowded and slummed up, but - having lived in western NC for a while (the same kind of economic pressures there), both areas are in dire, dire need of quality development; and to avoid getting stuck in service-economy hell, any number of people would be more than willing to 'slum the place up,' if that's one of the only other ways of making a non-miserable living - the tourist-economy underemployment of Watauga drove everyone I knew out of there, and that could be the future a lot of Eastern NC is looking at. Let's hope the amenities of NE NC (which are plentiful) will draw the attention of some of the state's economic development folks. There are a few universities and a number of small colleges out there - perhaps some region-focused cooperative things between them could be a spark for some positive growth.

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... having lived in western NC for a while (the same kind of economic pressures there), both areas are in dire, dire need of quality development... the tourist-economy underemployment of Watauga drove everyone I knew out of there, and that could be the future a lot of Eastern NC is looking at. Let's hope the amenities of NE NC (which are plentiful) will draw the attention of some of the state's economic development folks.

Whether you agree with it or not, this is one of the reasons the folks like Marc Basnight and others fight to protect road funding in this part of the state. They see it as a tool for economic development... widening US 64, improving US 17, etc. When people in the piedmont (Charlotte, Triad, Triangle) fill up their tanks or buy new cars, a decent percentage of that money comes here.

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I see the 2005 census report has currituck county gaining percent population growth than most NC counties. I think that spill over from HR is starting to accelerate. It is only a matter of time before those border counties began the vicious clycle of growth that if not planned for correctly will be another topic on this forum.

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Whether you agree with it or not, this is one of the reasons the folks like Marc Basnight and others fight to protect road funding in this part of the state. They see it as a tool for economic development... widening US 64, improving US 17, etc. When people in the piedmont (Charlotte, Triad, Triangle) fill up their tanks or buy new cars, a decent percentage of that money comes here.

I definitely don't dispute your point. But I do wonder about priorities - or at least, the slippery definition of 'economic development.' I know - from prior posts and discussions - that education, at least higher education is taking it on the chin, and will continue to do so for the indefinite future, especially out of the Triangle, but - education, education, education beats freeways, which don't mean squat if there isn't an educated workforce in place. And the sheer, unadulterated terror of I-85 between Salisbury and Lexington (for example) does no one, anywhere, any good - it just makes the entire state seem trashy (If the only NC someone sees is from I-85, I am very, very sorry), and hazardous - for a number of years in the 80s and 90s, wasn't I-85 in Rowan the deadliest stretch of interstate in NC?

I know you are correct, and I understand Basnight's reasoning, but the state - with transportation, and probably with education as well - is getting to be in a very serious, ugly quandary, and that's the thing that keeps getting danced around. And I like to think we can do better for all of the state, not just little pockets of it.

A new freeway through (for example) the Albemarle region would be most/only effective with simultaneous rail and airport improvements into the area (may be doable), promotion and expanded preservation of historic areas (ditto), a good post-undergrad university (not going to happen, within the UNC system at least), and upgrading Dismal Swamp NWR, Alligator River/Pocosin Lakes NWR or Cape Hatteras/Lookout NS into National Parks or Monuments (doubtful anytime soon).

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