Southern Gateway Study: A Vision for Transforming Raleigh's Suburban Corridor

APA North Carolina Chapter


Tuesday, September 26, 2017
3:30 p.m. - 4:45 p.m. EDT

CM | 1.25

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The City of Raleigh just completed and adopted a corridor study for the district immediately south of Downtown, an area of unrealized redevelopment potential that lacks a coherent identity. The presentation summarizes a series of transportation and urban design strategies that could leverage public infrastructure investment with key privately developed mixed-use districts to promote revitalization efforts along the corridor.

The Southern Gateway Study focuses on two automobile-oriented corridors that have historically served commuter traffic more effectively than the needs of the surrounding communities. Although this close-in corridor provides an iconic view of Raleigh’s skyline, the land uses are dated and underperforming as a vital urban district.  Transit options are minimal and ped/bike access to downtown is inconvenient and hazardous. Strategic land assets are present, but the study area lacks a coherent identity and the strategic elements needed to generate and sustain healthy economic and community growth, particularly affordable housing options.

The study investigated a series of strategic steps the City could take to help this area share in the robust growth the rest of Raleigh has enjoyed. Planning for revitalization provides a context for crafting appropriate transportation and transit enhancements that support the repositioning of land uses while ensuring long-term, multimodal access and mobility for local and regional travel. Given predicted growth, this area has potential for sustainable mixed-use districts linking viable neighborhoods through the conversion of the district into a more urbanized land use pattern.   

The presentation summarizes urban design strategies that leverage public infrastructure investment with key privately developed mixed-use districts.  Key recommendation include the conversion and extension of Wilmington Street as a dedicated transit and bicycle corridor and land development scenarios for four distinct nodes intended  to stimulate and activate desired  private investment opportunities. The mobility recommendations support and allow for a series of catalytic development in several focal areas, providing examples where public investment supports private development.

Learning Objectives of the presentation: 

Participants will benefit from:

- insight of urbanization, design, and planning efforts between city, designers, consultants, and the community for transformation of Suburban corridors.  

- gain an understanding of the strategic elements needed to generate and sustain healthy economic and community growth.  

- be exposed to the transportation planning efforts for crafting all types of transit enhancements that support repositioned land uses.  

- be able to identify how public investments can support and stimulate a municipality’s preferred private development patterns.


Eric Lamb, PE

Confirmed Speaker

Eric is a giant traffic nerd with over 20 years of transportation engineering and planning experience in the public sector. Hailing originally from Greensboro, NC, he currently serves as the Transportation Planning Manager for the City of Raleigh. Eric and his team are responsible for planning and programming all transportation ... Read More

Dhanya Purushothaman, AICP

Confirmed Speaker

Dhanya Purushothaman-Sandeep, AICP is a Senior Urban Designer with the City of Raleigh’s Urban Design Center. With a Bachelors in Architecture and Masters in City and Regional Planning, she has more than 13 years experience in areas of comprehensive planning, urban design, and community economic development. In her current ... Read More

Larry Zucchino

Confirmed Speaker

Over his thirty year career, Larry has focused on three professional realms: urban/community design, development planning and environmental policy. An exemplary model of leadership/management for landscape architects, Larry has practiced as a landscape architect and as an urban designer/planner. Larry serves in leadership positions with the ULI ... Read More

Contact Info

Benjamin Howell,