Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

IBruton

Our larger downtowns

36 posts in this topic

OK...so it's obvious that downtown (er...Uptown) Charlotte has the most developed downtown of the big three. What I don't understand is why? What happened to create this environment, and are Raleigh and Greensboro now on the same track as Charlotte?

I see a lot of potential for downtown Raleigh to develop much as downtown Charlotte has. However, I'm not so sure that Greensboro will be able to compete. Any thoughts on these three downtowns (and please, let's not turn this into a "my downtown is better than yours" argument)?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


I don't really see Greensboro's downtown as big as Raleigh's. I don't even know if it is as big as Winston-Salem's.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK...so it's obvious that downtown (er...Uptown) Charlotte has the most developed downtown of the big three. What I don't understand is why? What happened to create this environment, and are Raleigh and Greensboro now on the same track as Charlotte?

I see a lot of potential for downtown Raleigh to develop much as downtown Charlotte has. However, I'm not so sure that Greensboro will be able to compete. Any thoughts on these three downtowns (and please, let's not turn this into a "my downtown is better than yours" argument)?

I think Charlotte has had the good fortune of some big Fortune 500 companies being there. Having two huge banks and a large utility company based downtown has been a catalyst for their development.

I think Raleigh definitely has potential to take-off. I don't think it will rival Charlotte's downtown anytime soon or even ever. Greensboro has the difficulty of having Winston-Salem next door. Raleigh has Durham, but most new downtown type developments are taking place in Raleigh. I see a more difficult seperation between W.S. and Greensboro since Greensboro is actually larger and W.S. has the greater downtown development.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Greensboro's downtown district is probably about the same size as Raleigh's, but the tallest buildings are not spread out which make downtown look like nothing at a glance. When it comes to nightlife, projected residential development, I think Greensboro is at least comparable to Raleigh and I think that will be Greensboro's forte. When it comes to jobs.... not so sure about that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

don't forget about Winston-Salem. it has a lot going on these days.

raleigh, greensboro and winston-salem all have good things happening in the downtowns. if you talk about skyscrapers, charlotte clearly stands out. the banking industry in charlotte has certainly had a lot to do with that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Greensboro's downtown district is probably about the same size as Raleigh's, but the tallest buildings are not spread out which make downtown look like nothing at a glance. When it comes to nightlife, projected residential development, I think Greensboro is at least comparable to Raleigh and I think that will be Greensboro's forte. When it comes to jobs.... not so sure about that.

Raleigh's downtown is certainly larger than Greensboro's. There are twice as many employees in it. There are more employees than Winston-Salem in it as well. Judging by the number of companies relocating downtown, that will probably remain the trend. Having the state government tends to help that a lot.

I'm not going to debate skylines. Emporis ranks them pretty well. Charlotte, big drop, Raleigh and Winston-Salem are mostly neck-and-neck, big drop, Greensboro, Asheville and Durham are pretty close.

Most NC cities weren't historically large. In fact, I don't think Raleigh was the 2nd largest until very recently (surpassing Greensboro). All of them had a few companies headquartered in them, and Charlotte's biggest companies just happened to become major players on a national scale. That hasn't happened in the other cities. If it did, we would see Charlotte-resembling growth in their CBDs.

Raleigh, Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and Durham are getting large enough to naturally attract a steady stream of relocating corporations, so I wouldn't worry about their skylines growing. They will.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Greensboro is struggling trying to attract jobs (office development) downtown. Entertainment, residential and restaurants seem to be booming ing downtown Greensboro. It is also true that Greensboro's downtown only appears to be small because the tallest buildings arent spread out throughout downtown and instead confined to about 3 or 4 blocks. Downtown is roughly a square mile even though it appears smaller.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have to give props on the ballpark in downtown Greensboro. I saw some pictures somewhere and it looks awesome. I wish Raleigh had some sort of sports venue downtown.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


one thing I have noticed is that Guilford County is the only county in the Carolinas that has more than one city with a skyline. Both Greensboro and High Point have skylines. those two cities have really grown together and its almost like one big city because you can leave Greensboro, go into High Point and never know you left Greensboro unless you saw the city limit sign.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Raleigh's downtown is certainly larger than Greensboro's. There are twice as many employees in it. There are more employees than Winston-Salem in it as well. Judging by the number of companies relocating downtown, that will probably remain the trend. Having the state government tends to help that a lot.

I'm not going to debate skylines. Emporis ranks them pretty well. Charlotte, big drop, Raleigh and Winston-Salem are mostly neck-and-neck, big drop, Greensboro, Asheville and Durham are pretty close.

Most NC cities weren't historically large. In fact, I don't think Raleigh was the 2nd largest until very recently (surpassing Greensboro). All of them had a few companies headquartered in them, and Charlotte's biggest companies just happened to become major players on a national scale. That hasn't happened in the other cities. If it did, we would see Charlotte-resembling growth in their CBDs.

Raleigh, Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and Durham are getting large enough to naturally attract a steady stream of relocating corporations, so I wouldn't worry about their skylines growing. They will.

Raleigh's population overtook or passed Greensboro's population in 1985. :thumbsup:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

actually, technically south park has it's own skyline too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But it's not a separate city from Charlotte.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Found some stats regarding skylines from Emporis:

# of high-rises: Charlotte-53, Raleigh-20, Winston-Salem-18, Greensboro-13, Durham-9, Asheville-8, High-Point-7

Compare with Richmond's 65, Baltimore's 154, Atlanta's 203, Chicago's 1047, and New York's 5496 :wacko:

Raleigh's downtown is certainly larger than Greensboro's. There are twice as many employees in it. There are more employees than Winston-Salem in it as well. Judging by the number of companies relocating downtown, that will probably remain the trend. Having the state government tends to help that a lot.

I'm not going to debate skylines. Emporis ranks them pretty well. Charlotte, big drop, Raleigh and Winston-Salem are mostly neck-and-neck, big drop, Greensboro, Asheville and Durham are pretty close.

Most NC cities weren't historically large. In fact, I don't think Raleigh was the 2nd largest until very recently (surpassing Greensboro). All of them had a few companies headquartered in them, and Charlotte's biggest companies just happened to become major players on a national scale. That hasn't happened in the other cities. If it did, we would see Charlotte-resembling growth in their CBDs.

Raleigh, Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and Durham are getting large enough to naturally attract a steady stream of relocating corporations, so I wouldn't worry about their skylines growing. They will.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


A skyline that isn't that tall is not all bad. Richmond is a great example. The city is dense in terms of midrises which gives it an urban feel. I can see Raleigh going that route. There are very few cities in the world that have had the great fortunes that Charlotte has. So I say let Raleighs' downtown grow but to want it to shape up like Charlotte that is almost a dream come true type thing. Trust me if Raleigh can get three to four more buildings in the 300ft range the view would be great.

As for Greensboro it is unfortunate that a lot of the office space growth has occured far from downtown. I am not disappointed with its skyline but I do want at least on more tower to add to the mix. Winston-Salem is one of my favorite skylines. For a city of its size it truly represents what a city looks like when it grew pre-WWII. Although the growth shifted to Charlotte afterward I still love Wintons buildings. It is kinda impressive to view the city entrance on green 40 :( That is another story. One more thing Asheville is another skyline that IMHO is underrated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Found some stats regarding skylines from Emporis:

# of high-rises: Charlotte-53, Raleigh-20, Winston-Salem-18, Greensboro-13, Durham-9, Asheville-8, High-Point-7

Compare with Richmond's 65, Baltimore's 154, Atlanta's 203, Chicago's 1047, and New York's 5496 :wacko:

I am not sure where you were looking on Emporis but it lists the following

  • Charlotte - 104

  • Raleigh - 40

  • Winston-Salem - 20

  • Greensboro - 15

  • Asheville - 12

  • Durham - 9

  • High Point - 7

Just as a reference and consideration, the area where the most skyscrapers are to be found in the Carolinas using the Emporis definition is

  • Myrtle Beach/N. Myrtle Beach - 134

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I listed buildings already completed... I think your tally includes those completed, as well as projects proposed, never built, under construction, demolished, etc. Correct me if I'm wrong.

I am not sure where you were looking on Emporis but it lists the following
  • Charlotte - 104

  • Raleigh - 40

  • Winston-Salem - 20

  • Greensboro - 15

  • Asheville - 12

  • Durham - 9

  • High Point - 7

Just as a reference and consideration, the area where the most skyscrapers are to be found in the Carolinas using the Emporis definition is

  • Myrtle Beach/N. Myrtle Beach - 134

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

He was using the number of towers that have already been built. That 104 number includes proposed/approved/cancelled towers.

EDIT:

Arghh. I see I responded at the same time as blburton.

----------------------------

Did the other cities go through the degree of 'urban renewal' that Charlotte did? There are some pretty interesting pics of that 1970s in Charlotte, it looked like a few skyscrapers among many blocks of green grass.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not sure, but I saw that picture and was truly shocked.

----------------------------

Did the other cities go through the degree of 'urban renewal' that Charlotte did? There are some pretty interesting pics of that 1970s in Charlotte, it looked like a few skyscrapers among many blocks of green grass.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A skyline that isn't that tall is not all bad. Richmond is a great example. The city is dense in terms of midrises which gives it an urban feel. I can see Raleigh going that route. There are very few cities in the world that have had the great fortunes that Charlotte has. So I say let Raleighs' downtown grow but to want it to shape up like Charlotte that is almost a dream come true type thing. Trust me if Raleigh can get three to four more buildings in the 300ft range the view would be great.

I like Richmond's feel. It can't claim growth like Raleigh, but it feels much more like a "real city" to me--even more so in a lot of ways than Charlotte (no offense, Clt forumers ;) ). Richmond has real historic row houses, and lots of dense low and mid rise structures, along with a decent sized DT skyline and 2 urban interstates and a shipping channel. It's just been a medium-sized city for a long time and visiting there, one can tell. There are elements of Durham in it's grittiness and industrial feel too--not surprising with the big tobacco connections.

Raleigh has a way to go as an urban city, but RBC (31), Reynolds (25-32), Site 1 (20 & 15), Quorum (15), West condos (15), Blount St district, and other projects will help the causes for urbanization of DT Raleigh. IMO Raleigh will never be a Clt-type DT core without a MUCH larger major corporate influence--so I doubt it will ever happen. What Raleigh and other cities can do and should do is capitalize on their unique strengths.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I listed buildings already completed... I think your tally includes those completed, as well as projects proposed, never built, under construction, demolished, etc. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Greensboro has 17 skyscrapers that I'm aware of too. Emporis isnt always accurate

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like Richmond's feel. It can't claim growth like Raleigh, but it feels much more like a "real city" to me--even more so in a lot of ways than Charlotte (no offense, Clt forumers ;) ). Richmond has real historic row houses, and lots of dense low and mid rise structures, along with a decent sized DT skyline and 2 urban interstates and a shipping channel. It's just been a medium-sized city for a long time and visiting there, one can tell. There are elements of Durham in it's grittiness and industrial feel too--not surprising with the big tobacco connections.

I agree with all of those observations. The density of the skyline and the feel of downtown reminded me of the big cities of the northeast, but just outside, you get that gritty, southern feel too. I like it!!

What Raleigh and other cities can do and should do is capitalize on their unique strengths.

I am interested to see Greensboro's about 10 years down the road. It seems like before any major corporations come, downtown will expand in all directions, boasting ample residential property, entertainment for all, and general livability. Here is a link courtesy of TBJ about the plans for theSouth Elm Street Redevelopment project just south of the current CBD.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have to give props on the ballpark in downtown Greensboro. I saw some pictures somewhere and it looks awesome. I wish Raleigh had some sort of sports venue downtown.

Keep in mind that Durham has had a downtown baseball park for several years and is ahead of Greensboro in redeveloping its downtown for residential as well as offices.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

actually, technically south park has it's own skyline too.

also not a seperate city, but one must not forget about University City in Charlotte with six 12 story towers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.