Raleigh picks winner of Moore Square design contest

Posted February 2, 2010 4:50 p.m. EST
Updated February 2, 2010 5:50 p.m. EST

— A new design for Moore Square, one of Raleigh’s original public spaces, moved a step closer to reality Tuesday when the City Council unanimously approved a master plan services contract with the winner of a design contest.

Chris Counts, of Chris Counts Studio in Charlottesville, Va., was selected the winner of the jury-based competition with a design concept that officials say combines the tradition of Moore Square with a look forward.

With the $184,000 contract, Counts will develop a master plan to guide the design, development and management of the square. The City Council still must approve the plan.

Bounded by Hargett, Blount, Martin and Person streets in downtown Raleigh, the four-acre square hosts several public events, including the Artsplosure festival, concerts, summer movies and a farmers market. The square wasn't designed as a venue for large events, and the heavy traffic has created maintenance problems and a run-down look.

The public will be allowed to provide input during the adoption of the Moore Square master plan, and it will be reviewed by local and state boards and commissions before a final plan is presented to the City Council in the fall. Officials haven't determined how implementing a new master plan would be funded.