The most recent of these campus-area updates was from back in October 2023. With changes having recently been announced to the plans for the area around PNC Arena, I figured it was a good time to write another one of these.
PNC Arena & Backyard Bistro Plans Change:
It didn't take too long after the PNC Arena renovations and other area changes were announced for news to start making the rounds about alterations to the initial plans.
The first is that Backyard Bistro was officially purchased by the Carolina Hurricanes at the start of the year. When news was released last year about this pending purchase, the plans for Backyard Bistro involved renovations and the addition of a sportsbook to the venue. However, Raleigh Magazine mentioned on their 1/9/24 podcast that given the price tag for these renovations - there is no longer a plan for a sportsbook at Backyard Bistro, renovation plans are up in the air, and most of the staff were let go towards the end of 2023. Per Raleigh Magazine, it sounds like the Hurricanes are debating what exactly they want to do with the entire property.
However, on the 1/10/24 Ovies & Giglio podcast, it was mentioned that the Hurricanes have refuted at least some of those details. So, who actually knows what is actually going to happen there at this point ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. Regardless of what the 'Canes do with Backyard Bistro, I'm just hoping they start keeping it open later than 11 pm for fans leaving Carter-Finley and PNC Arena.
The second change to the plans for the area is that as part of the actual PNC renovations, construction costs for new Carolina Hurricanes' staff offices on the Arena's north side have been determined to be too large a portion of the budget, and thus eliminated from the plans. I'm sure this is only the first of many changes to come for these renovations as quotes continue to be solicited from contractors and other vendors.
The W Morgan St. corridor just off Hillsborough St. that sits between campus and Downtown Raleigh gained a new tenant when Gussie's officially opened its doors in January underneath the 927 West Morgan apartments. The front of the space closest to Hillsborough looks to be a bottleshop, but the larger back area of the space includes a bar that stretches around to the back windows and additional table seating. Having been twice already, this is a great addition to a growing pocket of businesses that's relatively close to campus.
This whole area is starting to stitch together with Gussie's opening, Wolfe and Porter undergoing extensive renovations, the already existing Irregardless Cafe, an upcoming 7-story apartment building where Goodnight's Comedy Club was once located, and The Bend project from Carpenter Development. All of these projects run down W. Morgan St. toward Trophy Brewing.
Close to that previously mentioned W Morgan St. corridor just off Hillsborough St. is the old Hillsborough St. IHOP that closed around 2016/2017. The building temporarily served as a leasing office for nearby apartments, but it was recently announced that Alpaca Peruvian Charcoal Chicken would be renovating the structure and moving in.
Fairfield Residential plans to construct a 5-story apartment complex at the corner of Hillsborough St. and Youth Center Dr. adjacent to the NC State Fairgrounds. This is the second apartment complex announced in the last year that is planned for the area near Carter-Finley and PNC Arena, which is notable given the immense amount of development that will likely be seen throughout the entire Blue Ridge Corridor over the next many years.
Chex Grill & Wings will be the first tenant underneath the Uncommon Apartments on Hillsborough St. For those unfamiliar, these apartments stand atop where East Village Bar & Grill was once located (RIP, sweet prince). East Village was supposed to reopen somewhere either within Uncommon, or nearby, but those plans now unfortunately seem to be dead in the water.
I am not at all familiar with Chex Grill & Wings, but this restaurant opening is notable because since the Uncommon apartment complex opened its doors in 2020, no retail tenants have moved into the lower level - Chex Grill & Wings will be the first. The Standard apartment complex across the street opened around the same time and similarly has no ground level retail either.
I'm personally hoping some interesting bar concepts come to this area of Hillsborough St. to help replace the hole that East Village's closing left in both my heart and in the routines of fans before/after Pack9 baseball games at Doak Field.
And speaking of Doak Field, has anyone heard a single thing from the Athletics Department since before last season about those renovations that are at least a decade past due that they asked the fanbase to donate towards? NC State Athletics: always a beacon of transparency and clear communication.
Raising Cane's recently opened a new Triangle store in Chapel Hill (pretty gross location tbh). Within the same article linked above from Axios, it was mentioned that Raising Cane's also plans to open a location in Raleigh near NCSU.
In late 2023, NC State and Shelton Vineyards collaborated on their third wine release - the bottle for this one featuring Reynolds Coliseum. The previous releases featured The Brickyard and The Court of North Carolina in 2021 and 2022, respectively.
I like the overall design/look of these bottles, but I really wish State would remove that awful, childish-looking Hallmark logo that's featured on the bottom of the bottle from all NCSU merchandise.