May 25, 2021
North Carolina State University leadership has been awaiting the next step in a months-long process to determine how the institution could proceed with plans for Centennial Campus, which the university is seeking the OK to redevelop. They got it, as a rezoning request was approved by the Raleigh City Council on Tuesday night.
That process, formally begun after the university submitted a rezoning request to the City of Raleigh in November 2020, will now allow redevelopment of 975 acres of Centennial Campus.
And the timing could be fortuitous: Google, Apple, Invitae, and others recently announced plans to establish new Triangle-based offices with thousands of employees expected to be hired in the coming years. According to WRAL TechWire sources, more companies could be on their way to expand in the region or to relocate to the region. Commercial real estate developers continue to add square footage of office space, indicating signs the commercial market in the Triangle may not see a pandemic dip after all.
‘Future development on Centennial Campus will present additional opportunities for NC State to further its academic and research endeavors,” said Alicia Knight, Associate Vice Chancellor, Real Estate and Development at North Carolina State University in an interview with WRAL TechWire. “We will also have the opportunity to continue establishing meaningful partnerships that bring value to private partners while fulfilling the university’s mission. This is a win-win – and the type of value proposition that Centennial Campus provides.”
The university’s request sought to align the zoning of 975 acres within the more than 1,000 acre campus with the city’s Campus Master Plan district, added to the Raleigh Unified Development Ordinance in 2013, according to Knight, who also spoke with WRAL TechWire in November 2020 when the zoning request was first made.
“The rezoning will enable NC State to continue fulfilling the vision of bipartisan state leaders who granted the land to launch Centennial more than 30 years ago,” said Knight in November. “It will enable a vibrant future for Centennial Campus consistent with current development trends and aligned with the university’s vision for a mixed-use and vibrant learn, live, work, play environment on Centennial.”
The rezoning request, newly approved, is likely to lead to a vastly different Centennial Campus, including towers up to 28 stories tall at their highest point, across nine different sections of land.
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