Land in Raleigh
Things to do
Why buy land in Raleigh, NC
As you approach Raleigh from any direction, you are struck by the magnificence of the mountains that surround it. Upon closer inspection, you can see that its founding fathers, who hundreds of years ago dubbed it “City of Oaks,” would be pleased to note that those majestic trees still line the streets and flourish in its lush parks despite the area’s steady growth through the years. But if you are expecting a sleepy southern town, you’ll be pleasantly surprised that Raleigh is the largest city in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Research Triangle, world renowned for its technology, scientific and green jobs. Find out why people from all over the world find their niche in Raleigh.
History of Raleigh
History of Raleigh
When North Carolinians began looking for a location for a permanent state capital, having tired of different towns hosting the seat, they sought a central site that would be accessible from all over the state. In 1792, the commissioners bought 1,000 acres from Joel Lane, an early landowner. They named it Raleigh after Sir Walter Raleigh, who had founded the “lost” colony of Roanoke where Dade County, NC is today. William Christmas, a commissioner who was also a surveyor, drew up the plan for what would become one of the earliest planned cities in the country. It would have a city square in the center, where the capitol building would be built. On the four corners would be parks named after four early governors. The streets, named after other prominent citizens, were laid out from the center like spokes in a grid pattern. The town began with a courthouse and a jail. For many years, in addition to official business, the courthouse also held balls and other social events. Although the state was agriculturally based, with tobacco its primary crop, Raleigh became the retail center. Family-owned businesses sprung up, selling wares in general stores, taverns and restaurants, millinery and fabric shops. The city also became an early publishing center for newspapers, flyers and printing of all kinds. Early residents dubbed Raleigh “City of Oaks” because of its many old, majestic trees, and they vowed to always keep a watchful eye that future development would not be at the expense of the area’s natural beauty.
Things to do in Raleigh
Things to do in Raleigh
Raleigh has been called “City in a Park” because it is surrounded by, and intertwined with, open spaces and trails to enjoy without having to take a long drive out into the countryside. Hiking, biking and walking trails are in nearly every park and greenspace. Lake Johnson Park, Hemlock Bluffs Nature Preserve, and Lake Crabtree County Park all have trails and loops to challenge you as much or as little as you want to experience, including popular paved trails and more secluded gravel or dirt paths.
Pullen Park is the oldest park in the state, founded in 1887, and is just west of downtown. Kids love the carousel, train and boats, plus there are pedal boats to rent on the lake, weather permitting. The park also has an Arts Center, Aquatic Center and a theater. The East Coast Greenway, a network of trails going from Maine to Florida, also wind their way through Pullen Park.
If you’re lucky enough to visit Raleigh on one of the eight weekends per year that the Juniper Level Botanic Garden is open to the public, you can see rare specimens of plants that you may not find anywhere else in the world. If you miss an open weekend, visit the Raleigh Municipal Rose Garden instead and check out its 60+ types of roses, plus free outdoor movies in the summer.
The North Carolina Museum of Art houses paintings by the Old Masters as well as Egyptian, African and Judaic finds, and the Southeast’s largest collection of sculpture by Auguste Rodin. Kids will be mesmerized by the STEM activities at Marbles kids’ museum. The Pope House, open by appointment only on weekends, showcases the area’s most prominent African-American, Dr. Manassa Pope.
Several organized tours will show you around town, including walking tours and private pedicabs that invite you to sit back and relax as you are wheeled around and shown the city’s sights.
When hunger pangs hit, Raleigh has no shortage of fine dining restaurants that put the city on the Forbes list of the 12 best global places to visit for gourmet fare. Or make everyone happy at Transfer Co. Food Hall or Morgan Street Food Hall. For adult refreshment, visit Raleigh Beer Garden, which has the largest selection of beers in the world, certified by Guinness World Records. More than 350 on tap!
And of course, once you move to Raleigh, you’ll have plenty of time and places to sample before deciding which BBQ side you’re on, Lexington or East Coast style . Changing your mind is perfectly OK too.
Though Raleigh was chosen as a central spot in its early days, its location today leans a bit more to the northeastern part of the state than the exact center. Situated along the Neuse River, in Wake County, it is about two hours from the Atlantic Ocean, and easy access to I-95, the national highway that runs from Maine to the southern tip of Florida. Raleigh forms one corner of the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Research Triangle area.
The city of Raleigh had about 467,665 people as of its 2020 census. The statistical metropolitan area had 1.21 million people, and the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area had 2.03 million people. Understanding the Research Triangle is important, because many people live in one point of the triangle and work in another, so the economies of the three cities are closely intertwined.
Median household income in 2022 was $69,720 within the city of Raleigh and $83,567 in Wake County. The median home sales price in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Research Triangle area was $450,000 as of March 2022.
Land is for sale throughout the greater Raleigh area, ranging from lots in the city and in suburban subdivisions to rolling acres out in the country. Lot sizes are also varied, from a quarter-acre lot in a subdivision to 30 or more acres in the country or areas that have not yet been developed. Prices range from around $50,000 into the millions depending on the size of the lot or parcel and its location.
Some of the available land might have a house and barn, or an estate complete with pool and guest house. Other parcels are free of buildings of any type and are just waiting for you to plant your dreams on it.
About 58.31% of the Raleigh population is White, 29.01% is Black or African American, 4.59% is Asian, and 4.82% are other races or two or more races.
No longer known for growing and selling tobacco, the Research Triangle is known for its large number of employers in computer technology, life sciences, and companies focused on sustainable, renewable technologies.
Arts in Raleigh
Arts in Raleigh
Arts flourish in downtown Raleigh, with opportunities to see exhibits as well as artists at work. Check out Artspace on East Davie Street and see artists at work in open studios, as well as exhibits to explore. The Block Gallery, located on the first and second floors of the Raleigh Municipal Building, showcases local artists from Wake and surrounding counties. The City Market Artist Collective always has something going on, from exhibits to workshops.
Burning Coal Theatre Company hosts performances as well as workshops for kids in the arts and writing. The A.J. Fletcher Opera Theater is the center for arts and dance in the city, and the Carolina Ballet produces traditional ballets featuring a diverse group of world class dancers and soloists who have performed all over the world.
Schools in Raleigh
Schools in Raleigh
Many people first come to Raleigh for an education before falling in love with the area and deciding to make it home. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina State University and Duke University are all right in the Raleigh area, and Wake Forest University is less than two hours away. Raleigh has several community and technical colleges, too, like Wake Technical Community College. UNC Chapel Hill gives strong admissions preference to NC residents, so once you become a resident of the Tar Heel State, you and your family have a much greater chance of gaining admission to this internationally elite school.
Beauty. Accessibility. A world-class technology, food and education destination. Check out why so many people choose to call Raleigh home.
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