Apr 6, 2023 - News

Plans filed for tower that would rival downtown Raleigh's tallest

A rendering of a 36-story tower planned on Raleigh's Nash Square, courtesy of the City of Raleigh

A New York developer has submitted plans to build a 36-story tower with more than 400 apartments on downtown's Nash Square, according to site plans filed with the city of Raleigh.

Driving the news: The building would be built at 303 S. Dawson St. — a 0.8-acre property that was rezoned in October to allow for up to 40 stories of construction.

  • The land is owned by Alchemy Properties, which purchased the property after the rezoning for $16 million. Alchemy has a long history of condo projects in New York City, and is partnering with Miami-based New Valley Realty on the project.
  • The rezoning was somewhat controversial due to the property being home to longtime music venue Berkeley Cafe. In the end, the Berkeley Cafe portion of the property retained its 20-story zoning — though the property still lies within Alchemy's construction plans.
  • On Thursday, Berkeley Cafe co-owner Alex Little told the Triangle Business Journal the cafe is looking for a new location and that its lease runs through November.

Why it matters: The number of housing units in downtown could more than double in the coming years if currently planned projects are completed.

  • More residents could bolster businesses and restaurants in the downtown area, which have suffered since the pandemic due to office workers coming into offices less frequently.
  • But it will also be a large-scale transformation for Nash Square's southern edge, which is home to low-slung buildings and small businesses.

The intrigue: If completed, the building would rival PNC Plaza as the tallest tower in downtown Raleigh.

  • PNC Plaza, on Fayetteville Street, has 33 stories, with a mixture of offices and condos.
  • The Alchemy building would stand at 429 feet, according to plans. PNC Plaza stands at 538 feet thanks to its spire — but its main roof sits at 427 feet.

What's next: A timeline for construction is not yet clear. Alchemy has not yet responded to Axios' request for comment.

This story has been updated with new information about the Berkeley Cafe.


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