Business

Apartments, retail, offices being added near Raleigh's PNC Arena

Posted August 14, 2014 1:25 p.m. EDT
Updated August 14, 2014 8:27 p.m. EDT

— Developers broke ground Thursday on the latest mixed-use development near Raleigh's PNC Arena. 

Wade I and Wade II on Wade Park Boulevard have attracted growth to the west side of the city over the course of a decade. But the boom expected in retail and restaurants stalled when the recession hit and demand has only recently picked back up, said Andy Andrews, CEO of Dominion Realty Partners.

"The area around the PNC Arena was expected to boom after it was built in 1999. Here we are 15 years later, and within walking distance to the arena there are still limited places to hang out before and after a game," he said.

All that will change with the addition of Wade III, which will feature more than 100,000 square feet for apartments, retail and office space.

Andrews said the plan is to go beyond the game and give fans more options to shop, eat out or grab a drink.

"Just having an event over here at the arena is not going to give enough business to those retailers. They need constant traffic," he said.

Katy Sizemore lives in the area and she looks forward to a neighborhood expansion.

"I think it'll be great," she said. "We all moved in thinking we'd have a place to walk to, you know restaurants and be social together."

Wade III is set to open in July 2015. Twenty-five percent of the space was spoken for before a shovel was even lifted. Once the space is 50 percent booked, developers will start on a Wade IV and Wade V.

"It's kind of a herd mentality," Andrews said. "Once one developer starts, others come."

Upgrades are planned at the area's centerpiece, PNC Arena, as well. There will be a new LED lighting system in place before opening day of the hockey season in October, and the Centennial Authority has selected two firms to offer suggestions on a redesign for other parts of the arena.