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Planned Glenwood Avenue project sparks traffic concerns

Posted December 10, 2014

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— A plan to turn a group of office buildings along Glenwood Avenue into a mixed-use community is drawing mixed opinions across Raleigh.

Grubb Ventures wants to transform 40 acres just inside Interstate 440 from what developers call a 1970s-style office park into a mix of upscale restaurants, luxury retail shops, apartments and a hotel.

Grubb is expected to submit a rezoning application to Raleigh officials next week, and the developer hopes to start rebuilding by 2016.

Critics already are pointing to traffic congestion in the area, saying adding more retail down the street from Crabtree Valley Mall would only make the situation worse.

"There's a lot of traffic. It's tough to get anywhere," Raleigh resident Ken Parker said.

"Going through all these traffic lights at Crabtree, it's pretty bad," resident Ralph King said.

Resident John Williamson predicted "nightmarish" traffic if the site is redeveloped, but he conceded the plan would be an economic boon to the city.

"If it would bring jobs and raise property values and help the businesses already here, I think that it might be annoying, but I think it might be worth it," Williamson said.

The Raleigh City Council must ultimately approve the rezoning for the project to move forward, and some members have already said they see major hurdles with the traffic issue.

Grubb Ventures President Gordon Grubb said the firm has conducted a traffic study and is willing to pump $2 million into adding extra lanes and stoplights along Glenwood Avenue.

He added, however, that he believes his vision for the site could actually ease traffic congestion in the area.

"Frankly, we think to develop 2 million feet of office (space) would create a bigger hassle than mixed uses," he said.

Apex resident Melissa Naske said handling congestion could simply be a matter of creativity.

"They probably just need to do a little more with widening that road," Naske said. "It's always good to have new things in the area and draw new people here."


This story is closed for comments.

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  • KT6596 Dec 11, 2014

    No problem for me. Don't go near there now and won't go near there later.

  • jbboone Dec 11, 2014

    Need to think about extenting Glen Eden Drive so it hit Glenwood Avenue past Crabtree Valley area - producing a by-pass of the area

  • Doug Hanthorn Dec 11, 2014
    user avatar

    "They probably just need to do a little more with widening that road," Naske said. "It's always good to have new things in the area and draw new people here."

    So why did you interview an Apex resident about this? Her attitude is all goody goody how wonderful. Just a little widening of the road will fix everything. My, how naive. That whole area is already a nightmare and it is getting worse. The N&O article said that average wait time at the intersection is 2 minutes now and predicted to rise to 10 minutes in 10 years. And you are going to add more cars to the immediate vicinity? Lordy! And the developed offers to toss in $2 million when the the state is looking at $300-400 million to do something to relieve the congestion? Typical developer. Think of the money he is going to be making if he is happy to chuck in $2 million dollars. Let him develop this wonder somewhere/anywhere but Crabtree.

  • Dana McCall Dec 11, 2014
    user avatar

    The problem with this design is that there is only one way in and out.

  • Plum Tuckered Dec 11, 2014

    This is the old Koger Office Park

  • ziva Dec 11, 2014

    Where would this be built? I know it says near Crabtree, but what outdated office buildings are they going to renovate?

  • Wheelman Dec 10, 2014

    Oh, it won't create any traffic problems. Have that fancy new railroad they're going to build come right through the middle of it. Make sure it runs every three hours and blows its horn when it come through. Won't be any traffic problems at all.