Fayetteville Street Reopening Goes Beyond $9M Renovation
Posted July 30, 2006 11:47 a.m. EDT
RALEIGH, N.C. — Converting Fayetteville Street from a mall back to an open road is a $9 million project that goes well beyond that price, local leaders and developers say.
More than $400 million is being invested on the one street alone -- including $94 million in public funds on the street itself and the rest in private funding for mixed-use developments and other projects.
Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker said the amount is well beyond what the city had anticipated.
"(There's) no question, getting Fayetteville Street under construction has made a big difference," he said. "If we hadn't done that, things would be the way they were three to four years ago, and we didn't have a lot of activity downtown."
Meeker said he believes Progress Energy's decision to build a new tower started the energy.
Jim Wiley, who is part of a local development group building on Fayetteville Street, said he hopes to keep that energy going.
"We knew it was the right time for Raleigh," Wiley said.
Wiley said his team always understood the importance of reopening Fayetteville Street.
"This is our prized street," he said. "Great places are made of great streets, and this will be the best street in Raleigh, so, we would expect the investment would come once it was opened back up."
Meeker said he believes the true success of Fayetteville Street will be known when development starts hitting all the side streets.