New shops, restaurants to grow in Raleigh’s Oakwood

Posted on 02/29/12 No Comments

In a recent post about the opening of the unique NC AIA’s headquarters building, we alluded to the importance of creative construction in helping a city become more livable. It’s common sense, actually. Who would want to live in a neighborhood characterized by un-inspired commercial buildings and empty lots?

However, you also need to have a solid base of retail to really energize an urban community. Residents in Raleigh’s historic Oakwood are about to experience just such an infusion. According to this article on New Raleigh, four new establishments are making their way to the classic Inside the Beltline neighborhood. If plans go through as reported, Oakwood will have a new grocery store, a relocated Market Restaurantboutique chocolatier and coffee shop/bakery.

On top of all that, the development to house these new businesses will be right next to the proposed Raleigh City Farm, a start-up that is pretty much exactly what its title says: an urban produce farm. (Clearly a dairy operation wouldn’t work.)

New retail development is a terrific sign of community health. It means that business owners have recognized a growing need for services, loosely translated: there is money needing to be spent. Plus, Oakwood carries with it a very insular vibe. It’s an ideal section of the city in which to live because it’s so close to so much of what goes on in Downtown Raleigh, yet it exemplifies classic southern architecture and charm.

The homes in Oakwood are large, old and very well built. There are also plenty of sizable duplexes and multi-family dwellings to mix up the population. Plus, the residents take very good care of each other and are quick to point out ways to improve their tight, shaded streets.

If you’re looking for an established, scenic and walkable urban community, Raleigh’s Oakwood deserves serious consideration.

Pic from New

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