by William Needham Finley IV™

Development Beat: Bellwood Project Back On

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Brought to you by York Properties

Bellwood Project Back On

Raleigh Convention Center Wants More Hotel Rooms

Seaboard Wine Tasting this Saturday 1/25

Noodles & Co. returning to Cameron Village

Denver Firm Buys Sojourn Glenwood Place

Longleaf Hotel Opens

Name revealed for Ashley Christensen’s new chicken sandwich restaurant

Transportation Department finds new home in Union Station

Broughton hosts Play4Kay Game Feb. 4th

Museum of History Masquerade Gala February 22

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Bellwood Project Back On

It’s been over a year since the derailment of a plan to demolish the Bellwood Condos and replace them with apartments behind Cameron Village. It seems those plans are back on track, but with a new developer.

Multiple tips from our loyal insiders indicate this project is back on after 100% of the owners agreed to sell their property late last year. The deal closed earlier this month with a new developer. The new project should look similar to what was proposed by The Worthing Companies in 2018.

Expect about 355 apartment units, a wrapped parking garage, improved drainage, and 5-6 stories depending where on the property you are. We’ve heard a certain percentage of the units will be dedicated to affordable housing, but we won’t know until site plans are filed.

Raleigh Convention Center Wants More Hotel Rooms

The Raleigh Convention Center says more hotel rooms are needed. The City Council was presented with plans to issue a request for interest for a hotel and development project in downtown Raleigh.

The development will be located on city-owned surface parking lots along Fayetteville Street in front of Memorial Auditorium (Duke Energy Center). The available 2.5-acre site includes two parcels. Right-of-way is mapped to extend Fayetteville Street through the property creating two sites, each about one acre. The land is currently zoned for 40 stories.

The City of Raleigh is issuing this Request For Interest (RFI) to solicit “creative responses from capable and experienced development teams” interested in developing the hotel and office/mixed-use tower projects, or the hotel project only.

According to a staff memo, the Raleigh Convention Center (RCC) hosted around 260 events with more than 450,000 attendees in 2018. However, “limited hotel rooms around the RCC impacts the size and number of conferences and events that the RCC can host. Two studies over the past several years, including the Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau Destination Strategic Plan, indicated that an additional 400-500+ hotel rooms are needed to support the existing venue and for future RCC expansion.”

The 500,000 square foot RCC and connected 401-room Marriott opened in 2008. The City recently committed $5M to optimize sales efforts and operations at the RCC.

The document outlines goals for the project:
500+ rooms with comparable meeting space
National brand
Upper upscale (not a typo)
Full service

Class A office tower with major anchor tenant
Ground level retail, residential, other creative ideas
Headquarters site

Site & Parking 
Below-grade parking spanning both sites, including underneath Fayetteville Street
2 one-acre blocks
Zoned by-right for 40 stories

The document lists Incentives for the project: 
Infrastructure Assistance of $30 million of public funding for the right project, with flexible application: parking, infrastructure, etc. 
Opportunity Zone
Other incentives are negotiable as allowed by North Carolina Law

The document also states that “To grow tourism and promote economic development, the City of Raleigh and Wake County approved $14 million in 2019 from Hospitality Tax revenue to buy needed land near the convention center for future center use, $5 million in 2021 to improve and optimize the convention center, and planned $230 million for a convention center expansion as early as 2028. Hospitality Tax revenue also is committed to cover 95% of ongoing capital maintenance for the venue.”

The RFI will be released January 27, followed by a pre-proposal meeting in Raleigh on February 21. RFI submittals are due on March 27. Just a heads up to other developers, ITB Insider will be submitting a proposal.

Seaboard Wine Tasting

Our friends at Seaboard Wine at HighPark Village are holding a free tasting Saturday (1/25) from 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm. Toby from Tryon Distributing (and the second best dressed wine rep in the Triangle) will be pouring samples of some store favorites from around the world, including:

Santa Barbara Verdicchio 2018; Marche, Italy
Ponzi Pinot Gris 2017; Willamette Valley, Oregon
Mayu Pedro Ximenez 2018; Valle de Elqui, Chile
Chateau de Pizay Beaujolais 2018; Burgundy, France
Yalumba Bush Vine Grenache 2018; Barossa Valley, Australia
Gundlach Bundschu Mountain Cuvée 2017; Sonoma County, CA

Seaboard Wine is also kicking off their Winter Wine Class series. Classes will be held from 7:15 pm to 8:30 pm on January 24th, February 28th, and March 27th. Each class is $39 or you can take all three for $99. You can make a reservation here.

Return Of The Mac and Cheese

Noodles & Co. will return to Cameron Village this summer. York Properties teased the announcement on Instagram, before confirming the news that the restaurant would be moving in to the former home of Sugarland.

We began investigating this development last October and can confirm that we predicted this would happen.

Denver Firm Buys Sojourn Glenwood Place For $83 Million

A Denver-based real estate investment firm spent $83 million just to be inside the beltline. According to the TBJ, Ascentris Real Estate bought Sojourn Glenwood Place, which was developed by Grubb Ventures and Walton Street Capital of Chicago. Located at 3710 Exchange Glenwood Place, the 40-acre property features a newly built 296-unit apartment complex, as well as office and mixed-use buildings. 

Longleaf Hotel Opens

The Longleaf Hotel is now open. Our friend Ashton Smith reported in her newsletter that the Longleaf held a soft opening last week. It appears that the hotel is now taking reservations. They recently shared the following on Instagram:

“The Longleaf Hotel & Lounge—downtown Raleigh’s independent boutique hotel—is NOW OPEN! Enjoy a stylish mid-century stay with modern amenities and a local’s touch. Sip and snack at The Longleaf Lounge and our lobby coffee bar, both welcoming visitors and locals alike. Whether you’re from near or far, we can’t wait to see you here! #LongLiveLongleaf”

Located at 300 North Dawson, The Longleaf replaced the Days Inn, which many considered to be The Ritz-Carlton of Raleigh. Local developer Loden Properties purchased the property for $5 million, as well as the adjoining property for $1.5 million.

Ashley Christensen Names New Restaurant

“Who is ITBlake and why did he DM us asking for free sandwiches because he’s “famous”?” Ashley Christensen, probably.

Ashley Christensen has revealed that her new fast-casual chicken sandwich restaurants will be named BB’s Crispy Chicken. Christensen, the recipient of the James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef in the country, has partnered with MDO Holdings on the restaurants.

She elaborated on the name in an exclusive press release that we received via e-mail, “The name started out as a nickname that Michael Olander, Jr. (CEO, MDOH) and I used to refer to this project when it was still just an idea. We were sitting in Beasley’s Chicken + Honey, my full-service restaurant dedicated to fried chicken, and joked that this new venture would be like a ‘baby Beasley’s,’ so we started referring to it as BB’s. After trying out many other options for names, we couldn’t shake this one—it resonated with everyone in our group. I love that it nods to my fried chicken origin story, while also being a distinct, standalone identity—one that encapsulates the approachable, fun, community-driven feel that we’re aiming for with this project.”

According to our exclusive source, BB’s will offer five different sandwiches, all designed to highlight Christensen’s favorite fried chicken pairings. We have learned that each sandwich starts with a “golden-brown, shatteringly crispy fried chicken breast on a locally made, fresh brioche bun with a swipe of mayo.”

Guests can add toppings, sauces, and also opt for char-grilled chicken or cornmeal-fried green tomatoes. BB’s will offer an array of freshly prepared sides, salads, milkshakes, and wine and beer. Menu items will be priced from $3 to $8.

Three locations are expected to open in 2020, with the first in early summer at the Midtown East shopping center in SOJO (off Wake Forest Road). The other two locations are at Durham’s University Hill and Cary’s Parkside Town Commons. You can follow BB’s on Instagram for more updates.


Transportation Department Finds New Home In Union Station

The City’s Transportation Department is on the move. City Council awarded the construction contract for a 6,200 square foot office space in Raleigh’s Union Station that will become home to the Transportation Department. 

The department, whose staff is currently spread across multiple locations including 310 W. Martin, the Poole Road Transit Operations Facility, and the Raleigh Municipal Building, will soon be located in the lower mezzanine area of Union Station.

According to a staff memo, consolidating the staff will enable them to “work more effectively in implementing Wake Transit initiatives and on the expansion of the GoRaleigh and Bus Rapid Transit programs, while also improving existing services.” 

The new offices at Union Station will include “two conference rooms, offices, a reception area, a break area, restrooms, open offices, and storage areas.” The offices will be utilized until permanent office space is available with the planned Civic Campus project.

Other News

Broughton Hosts Play4Kay Game February 4th

The 3rd Annual Play4Kay game will be held Tuesday, February 4th as Broughton takes on Leesville. The Varsity Women tip off at 5:00 pm, followed by the Varsity Men at 6:30 pm. Broughton’s Sports & Entertainment Marketing 2 classes are putting on the event as a class project with the goal of raising $15,000 for the Kay Yow Cancer Fund.

A Webb Simpson autographed 2012 US Open Annual, perhaps the most important piece of sports memorabilia ever, will be auctioned off as part of the Silent Auction. All silent auction items were donated so 100% of the winning bids will go to the Kay Yow Cancer Fund.

The Kay Yow Cancer Fund is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting innovative ways of fighting all cancers affecting women and providing support through giving strength, courage, and hope. Donate here. Check out and bid on the Silent Auction items.

Sponsorship opportunities are still available. Deadline to be included in the banners and programs is 3:00 PM Friday, January 24.

Museum of History Masquerade Gala February 22

The Museum of History Young Associates are holding a Masquerade Gala on February 22nd from 8:00 pm – 12:00 am. The black tie (mask optional) event will feature silent auction tables, tarot card readers, and live music from Diverse Groove. Tickets are on sale now.

General Admission Ticket includes: full open bar, heavy hors d’oeuvres, silent auction tables, tarot card readers, and live music with Diverse Groove. $50 for members, $60 for non-members

VIP Ticket includes: full open bar, heavy hors d’oeuvres, silent auction tables, tarot card readers, live music with Diverse Groove, a private room with a full open bar with premium liquor selection, a private food table, and a lounge area. PLUS! VIPs get 30 minutes before the event (7:30pm) to tour the Toy Boom exhibition with a glass of champagne. Get the true experience with VIP! Space is limited. $70 for members, $80 for non-members

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