RIP Hillsborough Street

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This topic contains 36 replies, has 24 voices, and was last updated by  Gowolves 3 years, 2 months ago.

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  • #105352

    packfan9616
    Participant

    Anyone else bothered by the new Hillsborough Street construction projects? The street used to have bars and shops that attracted students and made campus night life much more lively. These new hotels and apartments are making it less college-friendly and completely killing the atmosphere. Make State Great Again.

    #105353

    13OT
    Participant

    Hillsborough Street is but part of the effort by a bunch of Raleigh NITWITS to make the city like Chapel Hill. Bicycle lanes are replacing traffic lanes on busy 4-lane streets all around the city, and the traffic circle (rotary, roundabout) at the Bell Tower rivals the one near Pinehurst for sheer idiocy and traffic nightmares.

    I avoid Hillsborough Street whenever possible. If the circle doesn’t get you, the lane takedowns will, as well as the barriers down the middle of the street. Despite the traffic crawl this has created, I believe that pedestrians who try to cross Hillsborough near the circle will be taking their lives into their own hands due to the unpredictability of the cars coming off the circle. If they can afford to put a massive (and mostly useless) footbridge over the Beltline, then why can’t an engineering school put one across Hillsborough Street (or Western Boulevard)? After all, don’t city officials want more people coming on foot to visit this area? You sure as hell can’t park anywhere anymore, especially with the big buildings going up.

    Sadly, function isn’t a word in the Raleigh city planners’ vocabulary. It’s all about MONEY.

    #105354

    pakfanistan
    Participant

    The street used to have bars and shops that attracted students and made campus night life much more lively.

    When was that? As far as I can tell it hasn’t been that way for at least 20 years. All I remember is a hand full of old standbys like Mitch’s, and then a string of closed businesses…heck, even Starbucks and McDonalds shutdown on Hillsborough.

    #105356

    LRM
    Keymaster

    I agree Hillsborough through campus is cluttered and soulless now, but I don’t see this as a State issue — not sure what influence the University would have over Raleigh city planning efforts.

    That footbridge over the beltline, it’s a matter of perspective: it’s actually pretty useful (for those who use it). It connects the Reedy Creek trail coming out of Umstead (the far opposite end is a bridge over 40 by Crabtree Lake that connects to Cary/Morrisville greenways and mountain bike trails) to the greenways around Wade and Meredith.

    I travel all over and one of the immediate downsides I notice about most places, is they have no investment to encourage people to be active outside (away from traffic). The entire Triangle area is crisscrossed by really nice greenways, trail ways and parks.

    #105358

    tractor57
    Participant

    I remember the day when Edwards Grocery was an actual grocery store.

    #105359

    MP
    Participant

    ‘Something’ had to happen along Hillsborough Street. I don’t love the traffic circles, but they are tolerable as part of the overall changes. The best things about Hillsborough pre-change were (a) Mitch’s; (b) Sadlack’s; (c) Players Retreat. At least two of those still exist. Long live Mitch’s!

    #105362

    choppack1
    Participant

    Mitch’s just shows you what longevity and location can do.

    I have always found it overpriced, the food mediocre and the service barely tolerable, but yet I want to go back.

    Don’t get me wrong – I have visited pr several times in the last 10 years – so I have been in the area. I hope I get another chance to visit.

    #105366

    44rules
    Participant

    Usually get back to Raleigh every 3-4 years. I always preferred PR to Mitch’s. But I’ll go wherever the crowd is.

    Communism is not love. Communism is a hammer which we use to crush the enemy. Mao Zedong

    #105368

    Texpack
    Participant

    The street used to have bars and shops that attracted students and made campus night life much more lively.

    When was that? As far as I can tell it hasn’t been that way for at least 20 years. All I remember is a hand full of old standbys like Mitch’s, and then a string of closed businesses…heck, even Starbucks and McDonalds shutdown on Hillsborough.

    The blocks across from the Bell Tower began to be neutered when I was at State. Academic year ’79-’80 was the last year there was a full complement of bars on Hillsborough. During the summer of 1980, Chancellor Joab Thomas led a clandestine operation involving the University buying up all of the bars across from the Bell Tower and the Chancellor’s Residence. The whole deal went down while everyone was gone for the summer. Barry’s II then became my bar of choice for my remaining years at State. I have flashbacks to Edward’s Grocery if I hear “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” or “Rapper’s Delight.” You couldn’t spend 30 minutes in there without hearing one of those my freshman year.

    #105370

    highstick
    Participant

    If you’re an engineer and admit to ever recommending a “roundabout”, you should be committed to “a facility”. People can’t drive those things with one hand on their Iphone!

    Charlie Frazier invented those hoping that the Yankee invasion of Hilton Head would be thwarted…However, they just got lost and stayed there!

    "Whomp 'em, Up, Side the Head"!

    #105372

    tractor57
    Participant

    In the proper setting (not Hillsborough street) they work quite well. The problem is they are usually not installed until the level of traffic greatly exceeds what can be reasonably handled. In a town near here they have solved some huge problems but the level of traffic is much more reasonable for them. In that case they were the right idea.

    #105373

    AsheWolf
    Participant

    Back in the day before the mighty interstate, Hwy.701 was a particularly busy road on beach weekends. In Newton Grove, there is a traffic circle that had to be traversed on 701. Some of the local Newtonians would gather a few cars together and get to running laps in the circle so tight that nobody could enter the circle. “They” could get traffic backed up halfway to Clinnon without even trying.

    Allegedly.

    #105375

    highstick
    Participant

    In the proper setting (not Hillsborough street) they work quite well. The problem is they are usually not installed until the level of traffic greatly exceeds what can be reasonably handled. In a town near here they have solved some huge problems but the level of traffic is much more reasonable for them. In that case they were the right idea.

    One of these days, I’m going to stop and show you guys a roundabout that SCDOT put on Highway 401 between Darlington and I-20. They took an intersection with little traffic except on race day and one that you could see for 3/4 mile left and right and put a roundabout there…Makes no sense..

    There’s another in the middle of a back road on Sutton Road(1 exit north after the Catawba River Bridge past Rock Hill). The backroad comes into the backside of Baxter Village…Poorly marked and you’ll run all over it in the dark. Again, they created a traffic hazard where there wasn’t one beforehand.

    "Whomp 'em, Up, Side the Head"!

    #105376

    Pack78
    Participant

    ^Must be Clem’s Son’s engineers fault! We have a traffic circle just south of us here in Weddington that has worked quite well for years…think the prior assessments that they must fit the location and traffic volume are dead on.

    #105377

    Greywolf
    Participant

    “…heck, even Starbucks and McDonalds shutdown on Hillsborough.”

    First time I’ve seen Starbucks and McDonalds used in the same sentence. 😉

    #105378

    Greywolf
    Participant

    On vacation in England last year I got some directions: “Turn right at the roundabout.” Bad idea. Have you ever done a U-turn in a roundabout?

    #105389

    ryebread
    Participant

    I’ve traveled (driven) all over Europe and love traffic circles. If you’ve ever driven through a city with a series of properly designed and implemented circles, you’d potentially re-think the wisdom of the stop light.

    True story — I was stuck in a massive traffic jam on the only coastal highway in Portugal. We sat for an hour with traffic backed up going into this small town. It was the highway, so there was no place to go. What was the cause? A stop light, at a lightly loaded intersection within the town. Once past that, things immediately opened up. Why was that stoplight there? Apparently only to stop traffic to make people turn into a couple of restaurants / businesses. It was seemingly clearly there for non-needed reasons.

    When traffic circles seem to fail is when they’re paired with stop lights. One of the worst implementations I’ve seen are the stoplight filled ones in Washington DC.

    The issues with Hillsborough St. to me have nothing to do with the traffic circle. As Packfanistan states, it’s been that way for a long time (at least since the 1990s). The issues are with the businesses there, the rents, the student housing (or lack thereof) around it, and the general growth and push of students towards Centennial Campus. NC State is just as much a part of the problem.

    #105390

    Whiteshoes67
    Participant

    ^Completely agree with rye. Roundabouts are wonderful if drivers know how to use them, they’re paired appropriately with lights and merging traffic (walkers, cyclers, and vehicles). I don’t recall how long ago, but Hillsborough Street had roundabouts decades ago, so this wasn’t a completely novel idea. I don’t know if the current locations completely replicated the old roundabouts, but I’ve seen images of the older roundabouts. The biggest issue imo is the frequency of lights in close proximity to roundabouts. These bog down traffic. Traffic has to constantly flow. This from a non-engineer, but one who’s driven plenty of roundabouts stateside and abroad.

    #105391

    MrPlywood
    Participant

    There are a decent number of roundabouts in Victoria. Some have made a huge positive impact in traffic flow. The intersection that provides access to the airport was completely redesigned using a multiple roundabout design so traffic from any direction can head toward the airport without stopping. It can be a tad confusing but they wisely painted large airplane icons in the lanes to the airport which makes it easier for the uninitiated.

    YYJ intersection

    Then there are others which are poorly designed, i.e. too close to other traffic control measures. A new one at UVic includes crosswalks right at the entrance/exits to the circle, which causes cars to stop in the circle while waiting for pedestrians. Bad idea.

    UVic roundabout

    #105392

    tractor57
    Participant

    The ones I mentioned are in the town of Lewisville (on US421 just out of Winston-Salem headed toward Boone). Enough traffic the two at the ramps stay pretty busy and the third – next intersection toward town needed something although maybe not a stop light. Even several years people have not really adjusted to the idea that the main road does not have priority but it is getting better. In years past there have been a few here and there around here but most were eventually replaced when traffic flow increased. In Lewisville they are the right answer at this traffic level. In 20 years maybe not so much.

    #105393

    bigdaddypack88
    Participant

    IDK. Was there yesterday. It was easy to park. Mitch’s didn’t open til 5 so I walked around and there is a very nice bottle shop called Redline where the old Post Office was.

    I was able to take my boys to Sadlacks for a Dr. Franks before they closed but not Two Guys or any of the other old places that are gone now. Glad PR is still around. David’s noodles next door where Darryls was is pretty dang tasty. I feel an urgency to get back by Mitch’s as it has been many years.

    #105400

    LRM
    Keymaster

    The ones I mentioned are in the town of Lewisville (on US421 just out of Winston-Salem headed toward Boone).

    You gotta pass through the Great State of Wilkes by God before Boone.

    #105401

    highstick
    Participant

    ^Must be Clem’s Son’s engineers fault! We have a traffic circle just south of us here in Weddington that has worked quite well for years…think the prior assessments that they must fit the location and traffic volume are dead on.

    I would agree to a point on Clempson engineers. I found another masterpiece screw up yesterday at the Hwy 160 exit to Ft. Mill. But, re the roundabouts…do all of you drive Toyota Prius’s? My F150 takes up two lanes.

    "Whomp 'em, Up, Side the Head"!

    #105402

    highstick
    Participant

    BTW, you guys who live in Europe can keep your highways and road systems and “dainty little toy cars in Europe”!

    "Whomp 'em, Up, Side the Head"!

    #105405

    Greywolf
    Participant

    Highstick is still trying to figure how to put a gas station on the corner of a roundabout. Those big pickups we drive need gas, damn it.

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