RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — If you’ve been through Downtown Raleigh recently, there’s a good chance you might have seen the cranes, heard the hammering or noticed the many sites and sounds of construction.
The Downtown Raleigh Alliance said 16 developments in the downtown area are currently under construction. They which will bring 2,032 residential units, 408 hotel rooms, 144,410 square feet of office space and 89,145 square feet of retail when completed. More than 40 additional projects have also been planned or proposed.
The DRA said residential construction is at an all-time high and that Downtown Raleigh has “more residential units under construction or recently completed than any time in its history.”
Part of that construction has included The Signal apartments, that are part of a multi-phase development at the Seaboard Station near Capital Boulevard and Peace Street.
Employees from multiple businesses near that area said they’re eager to see what all the construction brings; they’re particularly hoping for more foot traffic. In the meantime, Lindsay Lariviere who works at Mon Macaron said all the construction in their area has created challenges.
“Since the construction, we’ve had issues with parking for our customers, staffing, we’ve lost about 60 percent of our traffic,” Lariviere said.
The manager said they’ve seen their sales drop significantly with limited access due to blocked roads and not enough available parking.
“The fact that we’re losing customers here, we’re having to make up for it elsewhere…it’s taking from our day-to-day operations,” Lariviere said.
Employees at the business said with less walk-ins, they’ve had to focus on more outreach, delivery options and catering.
Next door, Michael Bell who sells records and beer at the business Hunky Dory, said he has had a similar experience.
“The biggest problem is parking. And if customers can’t park, they can’t shop,” Bell said.
Bell said the construction has made business inconsistent.
“It’s good when it’s raining because construction crews aren’t out there, weekends when they’re not out there sales are great, but right now, it’s a rollercoaster ride,” he said.
Other businesses mentioned the frustration of not just parking, but also parking tickets.
Employees said they’re looking forward to when it’s all completed, but they’re also not sure how long the construction will last.
“I hope that all the dollars that we’ve been sacrificing waiting for this to finish will certainly come to fruition– I hope so,” Bell said. “That’s our goal, we’re sticking it out, we’re treading water.”
Finally, the DRA recently shared their Q1 market report, too.