Billion-dollar development announced in Midtown Raleigh

A mock-up of the water feature in Midtown Exchange's "Central Park." Provided to NSJ by Dewitt Carolinas.

RALEIGH — Dewitt Carolinas, a development company based in Raleigh, announced Nov. 14 they would soon begin work on a 40-acre development they are calling “Midtown Exchange.” They held a press conference to announce the details of the project, which will include a convention center, residences, offices, an upscale hotel, a central greenspace, shopping and dining.

The property, which is between Wake Forest Road and Six Forks Road just outside the 440 Beltline north of downtown, will feature 790,000 square feet of office space, 300 hotels rooms, and 1,275 condominiums, apartments and townhomes.

“We’ve been holding this back from everybody for about two years now. So, it’s nice to be able to put it into the public and start talking about it,” said Todd Saieed, CEO of Dewitt Carolinas, at the press conference.

Everett Daniels, president of Dewitt Carolinas, presented the project to media gathered, saying, “We’re excited. We’ve been working on this project for really over 20 years, with the land assemblage.”

Dewitt brought in national consultants, from as far away as Texas and California, to help create a vision for the property.

“We’re ready to start with our road construction in January and we have a few of the buildings inside the development that we’re working on plans for now,” Saieed said.

The development will have a greenspace park in the middle of the property, with the purpose of being an amenity for those who work, live and shop in the surrounding spaces. The park will include a water feature that flows throughout the area, and places for food trucks, farmers markets, entertainment and other attractions.

Of historical note: the legendary Isaac Hunter’s Tavern, where founding fathers met to discuss founding the state, and to decide on a location for its capital, was on the property. Dewitt Carolinas has found and collected some artifacts from the original tavern. In the “underground speakeasy” they’re building on the property, they plan to use these items to showcase the history of the site and its importance for the city and state. The name Midtown Exchange is meant to call back to that point where the site was a place of exchange for early residents of the state.

“The dignitaries back then used it as a place of entertainment, a place of meeting,” Saieed said of Isaac Hunter’s. “We think there’s something special about having a bit of Raleigh history on our property, and our goal will be to try to build off of that.”

A sky bridge links the two main towers and will serve as an office complex for a single company. The attractive location, taking up the top of two buildings and a sky bridge linking them with views of downtown, they hope will attract a major company to relocate.

“The next corporate headquarters that decides to take the sky bridge building as their headquarters is going to bring really good quality jobs within walking distance for a lot of people. So we’re really pleased with that,” said Ven Poole, senior partner of Dewitt Carolinas.

Dewitt Carolinas says construction will be completed in 5-10 years, depending on demand and investment.