Highrise Project Envisioned for Edison Phase 2

CORRECTION APPENDED: The original story said the proposed highrise would include office, retail and residential space. There is no office space currently planned for the proposed building.

Downtown Raleigh could see another addition to its skyline if developers move forward with a large-scale project that has been in the works since 2006.

Gregg Sandreuter, the developer for the Edison Project, said that he and his partners are envisioning a 20- to 22-story mixed-use highrise for the northeast corner of Martin and Blount streets.

While site plans have not been submitted, Sandreuter told the city Budget and Economic Development Committee Tuesday that the project will include retail and about 320 residential rental units.

The highrise is the second building proposed for the site and would complement the first phase of the project, which is slated for the south side of the block.

The phase 1 building, pared down from the original proposal six years ago, will include 239 residential units and 18,000 square feet of restaurant and retail space. The site plan for the first project has been submitted and is scheduled for Planning Commission review in May.

“The residential project is the first step to redeveloping the entire block,” Sandreuter told the Record. “It's an exciting project that will bring many new residents to downtown.”

Both projects are scaled back from the original Edison Project that was envisioned in 2006, which featured four towers.

Councilor Randy Stagner asked if Sandreuter would consider a grocery store, an amenity often requested by downtowners.

Sandreuter said he has had conversations with representatives with Harris Teeter, who said urban locations just aren't economically viable. He added that he still would like to see a small urban grocer move in and has considered leasing the space rent free if one would consider it.

An image in the site plan for Phase 1 of the Edison project, showing part of the building next to the Blount Street parking deck.

In October, city councilors approved leasing 300 parking spaces to accommodate the first phase of the project. Tuesday, committee unanimously approved leasing 396 parking spaces in the Blount Street parking deck to Edison Land LLC under similar terms.

Edison Land will lease-to-own the spaces at $27,000 each during the next 20 years for a total of about $10.9 million. The city will recoup the cost of building the deck.

The lease agreement will go to the City Council for final approval next week.

Share your comments: What do you think about the scaled-back plans?

9 thoughts on “Highrise Project Envisioned for Edison Phase 2

  1. “Urban locations just aren’t economically viable.”

    Hm. They seem to have plenty of urban locations in Washington DC. They also have one in downtown Charlotte, and then there’s even the ones at North Hills and Cameron Village that might be called urban by some people.

  2. Orulz, that line stuck out to me too. Parking seems to be the common excuse but under the right condition, with the right about of willingness, just saying it not viable seems like a cop out. The Cameron Village and Charlotte location do include surface parking. Not sure how much of a difference the lack of parking has made for North Hills with the move from across the street.

  3. Yeah, was Harris Teeter the only grocer he talked to? Cuz they surely aren’t the only ones in the market! Talk to Kroger, Food Lion, Lowe’s, and all the others before making a blanket statement like that. (Harris Teeter is overpriced anyways.)
    Or heck, a Target that has groceries plus other needed amenities could have an even better chance…the profit margin on stuff like clothes, accessories, linens and home decor could be more enticing for the company.

  4. I used to live near a Whole Foods in Alexandria, VA in the Old Town district. They had 1 level of below grade parking and it was typically only 2/3 full during the peak hours. The benefit of the store being urban in the first place is that people will be able to walk and bike to the store! The below-grade parking was used mainly by people just a bit too far to walk or if they had to get too much stuff to carry. The underground parking was almost more convenient than a surface parking lot because the elevator puts you pretty close to your car, and much less of walk than across a parking lot.

  5. There is no where near enough space for a Target-like store, but I think a good urban market store focusing on essential foods and general merchandise items would do quite well, particularly with that location on the same corner as two of the newer urban housing developments, and just two blocks from the old West Raleigh neighborhoods, and 3 blocks from Shaw.

  6. Something the size of a Fresh Market could easily fit. But with the price level of a Kroger. That would be ideal, if such a company exists. LOL

  7. (Sorry for another out-of town example -but just to show that its possible): there is a Safeway in the 500 block of S Royal St in Alexandria, VA. Measurements from google maps approximate it as 125′ x 165′ (including the loading dock area). This is about the size of the site in Raleigh. And it had everything a ‘normal’ grocery store had, just narrower aisles and no hot bars / salad bars and all that nonsense (just go to a deli!). Yes, it was small, but it served the community it was intended for. Downtown Raleigh residential community is small too, so a mega Harris Teeter is not required. In the future, I’d rather see multiple medium-sized grocery stores scattered throughout downtown than only one super huge one.

  8. I don’t like the scaled down project. When Raleigh hosted the NHL All Star game, the TV channel airing the game faked out the downtown to make it look bigger. Charlotte is the big boy in this state because they can pull the trigger. Raleigh folk need more to be proud of than the “Universities” and the few RTP companies that employ the Geeks.