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ChiefJoJo

Clarence E. Lightner Public Safety Center

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With everything going into here, will the "Dawson" half of the existing property be unnecessary? Maybe the city wants to sell it for a Hue 2 or other development? Or move the workers in One Exchange back to Hargett after Lightner is open for business and sell it? The current council chambers are dated and don't exactly scream "world class city."

the city has just updated and renovated the dawson half, so i don't see it going anywhere. they also need it to accomodate "all" the city staff. a lot of staff is in OEP, Capital Bank building and Hanover II. not to mention, will the police return? i believe there will be a component to the new building that will house offices for police administration. the big question mark is the parking structure in that block. its on its last leg, will the city rebuild a deck with a commercial/office component. that would really bring that block to life.

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^^^

I really am hoping they rebuild that thing and plop a building on top, which would be much smarter use of the land :) .

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Geary wrote an interesting article in the current Independent where he talks about Raleigh's budget. In it he points out how Crowder is proposing building the CEL Public Safety Center at the Reynolds Tower spot, if the Reynolds don't meet the deadline:

...Councilor Thomas Crowder, a Democrat, is eyeing a different downtown location for the central station. It's "the hole in the ground" on Hillsborough Street (opposite the Clarion Hotel) where developer Ted Reynolds has been unable to get a high-rise hotel-condominium project started during the seven years he's had options to buy the land from the city. It will be available in a few months if Reynolds' latest option expires and the city doesn't renew it, Crowder notes. Building there, he says, would save the city an estimated $6 million that Allen has budgeted to relocate the police temporarily while the current station is being replaced. Crowder's idea: Don't tear the old one down until the new one (on Hillsborough Street) is finished; then, sell the old one, with its prime location facing Nash Square, to a residential developer.

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I support this idea, it saves money and gets rid of the hole. If Reynolds is able to make his deadline this fall then great, but if not the city should not renew with him in any form since he consistently drags his feet.

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I think this sounds like a pretty good plan. Its kinda strange that both the Hillsborough, and the CEL Public Safety Center looked so similar, and now there is talk of the Safety Center being built where the Hillsborough was supposed to go. I actually think I like the idea of the CELPSC being on Hillsborough rather than where it is proposed to go now. It will provide for a great opportunity to liven up Nash Square with some more residential/retail. I would like to see hotel/apartments built on the Safety Center lot as opposed to condos though. They would probably still be rather expensive being right there at Nash Square, but it is a beautiful park and I would be willing to pay a premium to live there.

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This also does a good job of trying to keep Hargett active all along its course in terms of residential and retail. Government buildings are usually neither of these. Hillsborough already has a quiet stately feel to it that fits well with government use.

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I don't know if a nice hotel would want to open across from the AT&T building, but a business hotel could do well there.

What size footprint does the Hillsborough/Dawson lot have compared to Hargett/McDowell? Could the city buy the mid-block lot across from the Clarion from the Reynolds? Having some active street level activity to link Campbell Law to the Borough to the Flying Saucer to the rest of the Warehouse district would be ideal. Is there any reason the city can't build on Hillsborough/Dawson/Morgan and lease some street level space?

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^Wow. That's pretty far out. Obviously the police need to be somewhere while the new building is being built...I guess I kinda expected it to be at least somewhat close to downtown.

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To show the tightening credit market has affected "main street" I heard the city had attempted to obtain a credit line to pay for preconstruction services for this project but was turned away by the lending institution. Keep in mind that Raleigh has a AAA debt rating, though I suppose that is nearly meaningless these days. The city will now have to dip into reserve accounts to complete the work and keep the project on schedule.

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Not surprisingly, this project will be put on hold for a couple of years until the credit markets turn around.

I think the important word in that article is "could".

Unless I read it wrong, they are making the decision in December after evaluating the state of the market. Not saying that the credit market will improve substantially, but the decline in local credit markets could slow enough to get this thing funded.

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New Raleigh and Raleigh Public Record have the scoop, including a bunch of new renderings, of the public safety center as well as the whole municipal complex as envisioned by the architects.

The plans call for the 16 story tower to go up first, followed by a parking deck with a green roof, and then several other buildings - until the entire block has been rebuilt. Active uses (lobbies and retail) will line all four streets when the municipal complex is done.

Council will face a "go-no go" decision on this project this summer, when they must decide whether or not to pursue financing.

Read the whole presentation here.

lightner1.jpg

lightner2.jpg

lightner3.jpg

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The proposed buildings look fabulous from Nash Square. But there are no renderings of the north side, and it looks like that side will get a minimal treatment. Technically, the north side will be the backs of the buildings, but that is the side people will see more often, as most of Raleigh is north of the project. In any case, I hope the project moves forward.

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Color me impressed. Who would have thought the city, of all entities, would have came up with such an interesting mix of buildings. Here's hoping this one gets built out way ahead of that 2027 schedule.

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WOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

That is BEAUTIFUL

I am extremely, extremely satisfied that the city is pursuing such high architectural and.....dare I say it?......Artistic standards for their buildings.

This has got to be the prettiest police building EVER.

I HOPE they get financing!

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It's interesting that our best architecture is coming from the 'super-projects'. This, the Edison, and the Convention Center.

Also the 2027 date is the finish date I assume. The project will proceed in steps, with the 16 story tower coming first. It would finish in a few years, I think.

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