It’s been hard to get a substantial grocery store chain to land and stay put in downtown Raleigh, but the announcement of a Harris Teeter for the Seaboard Station development near Peace University may calm the skeptics. At 55,000 square feet, it will be slightly smaller than the huge Cameron Village Harris Teeter (70,000 square feet) but a nice size nonetheless. And it will cause major “buzz” at Seaboard, which is owned by William Peace University.
Seaboard Station is an upscale place with a multitude of shops and a wine store along with the 18 Seaboard restaurant. It should be hoped that the Harris Teeter will be close enough to some downtown residents in less affluent neighborhoods to provide an accessible place for them to buy groceries. The store also will include a pharmacy.
The Harris Teeter now becomes part of an overall burst in development in the downtown area. Indeed, residential development can spur retail development — to serve all those residents, who like to enjoy a neighborhood where they can walk to their entertainment and dining.
Raleigh still needs to focus on developing more affordable housing for low-income working people, and to zone in a way that blends that housing in with so-called “upscale” development. Even as the city enjoys more good news about downtown, affordable housing must remain a priority.
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