Trend of Low Inventories

low-inventoryWhen you are saying that the Cary North Carolina market has a low inventory it depends on what you are comparing it too.  Are you comparing it to the number of homes on the market last year at the same time?  Are you comparing it to homes in a price range? Or even homes in a certain area?

According to Reuters, “U.S. home sales fell more than expected in December as the supply of houses on the market dropped to a record low, pushing up prices and sidelining some potential first-time buyers”.  They also said, A shortage of affordable homes for sale will frustrate the ambitions of many first-time buyers.  First-time home buyers are forced to stay in rental market longer than planned.  This information was provided by Matthew Pointon, property economist at Capital Economics in New York.

“We expect little growth in sales in 2018, given tight inventories,” said Gregory Daco, chief U.S. economist at Oxford Economics in New York.  Affordability is crimped by rising mortgage rates, posing an additional headwind to sales.

The Cary North Carolina market will fluctuate depending on price and area of the property.   A 6 month supply of property often considered to be a balance market by that National Association of REALTORS®.   When homes sell faster than 6 months it is considered to be a seller’s market.  Likewise, when homes take longer than 6 months to sell that is considered a buyers’ market.

Everyone knows that supply and demand affect price.  When the so called “Housing Bubble”, the demand decreased so much that the supply increased to 4 million houses or more.  The prices of homes took a beating.    Also, the increased inventories of foreclosures, short sales, bank refusing to loan and the home building industries lack on new housing starts all contributed to very low home prices.

“New construction has showed signs of perking up, but remains well below estimates of demand,” said Aaron Terrazas, as senior economist at Zillow. “More importantly, builders face rising labor, materials and land costs making it difficult to build at a price point attractive to entry-level buyers”.

Since that time the economy has improved, and banks have started to lower requirements, interest rates have stayed low and foreclosures have slowed.  Inventory nationwide is reduced to approximately 2 million homes.  When demand is at a constant level and inventory is reduced, home prices trend upwards.   This is because there are the same number of buyers trying to buy less number of homes.

Mortgage rates are now climbing each week in 2018 and consumer confidence level is going up.  This means that Cary North Carolina market is having an increase in demand.   Buyers are now noticing that home prices are increasing.

Spring is almost here and that is the normal busy time of year.  Home prices are going up and inventory is dropping.  So it is time to decide what you want to do before it is too late.

Check Out The Current Market Updates For Our Area

If you’re curious to know what inventory conditions are for your specific market, contact us with the price range and area and I’ll send you a report.

What’s a Mixed-Use Development?

So, what is a mixed-use development, and where can I find them in the Triangle?

You’ve probably heard the term mixed-use development circulating in the news or in neighborhood newsletters. A mixed-use development blends residential, commercial, cultural, institutional, or industrial uses. This blend is physically connected and “functionally integrated”, which is to say everything is interconnected, including walkways or pedestrian crossings. Kind of neat, right?

A great way to describe a mixed-use development is by taking a look at mountain resorts. If you’re going away skiing, most of the time the ski resort is located in a “village” that includes hotels, restaurants, shopping, and other amenities. Pretty useful, and efficient.

Moving forward, we’ll abbreviate mixed-use development with MUD.

MUDsWhat are the Benefits of a Mixed-Use Development?

There happens to be quite a number of benefits to MUDs. For starters, these areas are typically very pedestrian friendly. The presence of traffic still exists, but’s not quite as heavy.

By integrating retail, office, and residential space all in one, MUDs make good use of land they occupy. Why is this? The buildings and developments are used for more hours of the day and by more people, which is to say they are essentially multipurpose buildings. What a good way to be environmentally conscious. What’s more, is that MUDs make it possible for people to commute to work in different manners. Not everyone will need to have a car, and talk about a shorter commute!

Looking for less maintenance than a typical single-family home? A mixed-use development might be for you. They’re family friendly, they promote a social lifestyle, and MUDs also take away the need for the heavy duty maintenance single-family homes require.

One of the big reasons MUDs are beneficial in urban areas is that they provide access to commercial businesses for those who might not have access to them otherwise. Low income families can benefit greatly from MUDs, thanks to the pedestrian-friendly lifestyle and proximity to commercial businesses.

Check out this Mixed-Use Development Activity Report

So, you want to know what a MUD might look like in the project phase? Check out this activity report for Charterwood in Chapel Hill. Want to see another? North Estes Mixed-Use Development in Chapel Hill blends office space, retail space, and even housing space.

Although MUD isn’t a one-size-fits-all term, taking a look at these projects and applications will help you get a sense for the variety MUDs come in. One thing to be sure of, however, is that MUDs will have different parameters, requirements, and zoning laws in different states.

Where are the MUDs in the Triangle?

With all of the urban and suburban growth in the greater Triangle area, we’re starting to see MUDs pop up all over. From Cary to Chapel Hill, builders have been integrating social, commercial, and residential uses into their plans.

Cary is a great example of an urban and suburban area with crazy growth. Remember the Wegmans grocery store coming to Cary? Well, Wegmans is part of a mixed-use development that Columbia Development Group proposed. Their proposal included an amphitheater, green space, office and retail space, and even housing too. Don’t forget about Brier Chapel Commercial Development, either.

MUDs aren’t only in Cary or Chapel Hill though. They’re making their way to Holding Village in Wake Forest, Chatham Park in Chatham County, as well as North Hills mall in Raleigh.

Take a look at any of these neighborhoods for a sneak peak into an MUD in the Triangle area. Don’t forget to check out the featured listings while you’re there!

Woodcroft in Durham
Southern Village in Chapel Hill
Meadowmont in Chapel Hill
East 54 in Chapel Hill
Briar Chapel in Chapel Hill
Brier Creek in Morrisville
Chatham Park in Pittsboro

Real Estate Experts

We’re here to help!

If you are interested in learning about these mixed-use developments and properties available in them in the greater Triangle area, visit us online.  Call us today at 919-813-6449 or e-mail us at  info@realestateexperts.net for additional information.  

When buying a home, even new construction, it is important to have a buyer’s agent. At Real Estate Experts, we are fierce representatives for our clients. We’re known as expert buyer agents so contact us and see how we can help you find just the home you are looking for.

What’s Up With Wake County’s New Transit Plan

Wake County has a massive population, growing by an estimated 64 people per day. Many of us are used to the long commutes, heavy traffic, and frustration associated with said growing population. However, in November, Wake County voters were heard and the Wake County Transit Plan was approved! The Wake County Transit Plan isn’t news to any Triangle residents.

If you’re unfamiliar with the plan, here’s a quick summary of the Wake County Transit Plan.

  • Build a frequent “Bus Rapid Transit” network in high-traffic areas that will incorporate dedicated bus lanes, level boarding platforms, and other enhanced features that will improve the speed and quality of service.
  • Create a brand-new commuter rail line that will utilize preexisting tracks to provide a backbone of passenger train service across the county, thereby enabling people to completely avoid daily road traffic congestion.
  • Expand the frequent network (which is every 15 minutes) from 17 miles to 83 miles. All service will be be expanded to 19 hours a day.
  • Provide triple the current bus service in just the first few years, connecting each town in the county.

According to Wake Transit, the implementation of this plan could take more than one million miles of travel off our roads every single day. How? By offering people attractive alternatives to driving. More than 50 percent of homes and 70 percent of jobs will be within half a mile of a transit stop across Wake County. Talk about efficiency!

GoTransit discusses its key role in transforming Triangle transit. Check out what’s in store.

In November 2016, Wake County voters agreed to raise the county’s sales tax rate by a half-percent in order to fund the $2.3 billion Wake County Transit Plan. What will that mean locally? The local sales tax rate will increase from 6.75 percent to 7.25 percent beginning in April 2017. Then, in December 2016, the Wake County Board of Commissioners officially authorized two key sources of financial support for the Wake County Transit Plan. They are: a $3.00 increase in the Regional Transit Authority Registration Tax as well as a new $7.00 Wake County Vehicle Registration Tax. These two local funding sources are in addition to the half percent increase of local sales and use tax referendum.

Wake County Transit Plan Update

It’s been months since December, so what’s going on with the Wake County Transit Plan?

In February, the GoTriangle Board of Trustees approved the $3.00 increase to the Annual Motor Vehicle Tax in Wake County. This is one of the key funds for the Wake County Transit Plan, and is especially important for the bus services. Annual Motor Vehicle Tax will help pay for tripling of bus service, four Bus Rapid Transit Corridors and Commuter Rail service connecting Garner, Raleigh, Cary, RTP and Durham.

April 1st saw the tax go into effect within Wake County. The investment into better public transportation began, which is to say the tax voted on in November came into effect.

“Wake County has more than a million residents. That number is growing by an estimated 450 people every week,” says Wake County Board of Commissioners Chairman Sig Hutchinson. “Projects funded through the Wake County Transit Plan will make commuting options more frequent, reliable and easier to use. We are thrilled to see this investment begin to take shape. We look forward to the enhancements it promises for the community.”

So, what’s coming up next? How will these developments begin to take in the Triangle and Wake County?

Change is on the Horizon

This summer, the other key funding sources will come into effect. This means the $7.00 Wake County vehicle registration tax will begin, as well as an $8.00 regional registration tax. The regional registration tax increases by $3.00 from the original $5.00 in August, 2017.

Tax isn’t the only thing on the horizon for the 2017-2018 fiscal year. Other selected project proposals include:

  • Expanding Monday through Friday service frequency to every 15 minutes for the GoRaleigh 7 route. Also, expanding Sunday service on all existing routes.
  • Expanding mid-day service frequency for GoCary routes 3, 4, 5 and 6 and adding Sunday service on all existing routes.
  • Increasing frequency to every 30 minutes on GoTriangle route 100 between Raleigh, Raleigh-Durham International Airport and Research Triangle Park.
  • Increasing frequency, days of operation and hours of service on GoTriangle route 300 between Cary and Raleigh.
  • Significantly increasing door-to-door service for rural residents through
  • Continuing express bus routes to Fuquay-Varina, Knightdale, Wendell and Zebulon.

What Residents Are Saying

Some of the change brought on by the Wake County Transit Plan is already affecting surrounding Wake County communities like Fuquay Varina.

“For residents who do not have direct access to personal transportation, this service has filled their transportation void by providing a low-cost, efficient transportation service,” says Town of Fuquay-Varina’s Economic Development Director, Jim Seymour. “For those residents who do have access to a personal transportation and want to reduce their transportation out-of-pocket costs, this service has reduced typical transportation costs—travel time, operating costs and parking facility costs. For some households, it offers the opportunity to lower the cost of vehicle ownership by transitioning from a two-vehicle to one-vehicle household.”

If you’re looking to learn more about the Wake County Transit Plan and associated projects, there are many resources to check out.

Real Estate Experts

For more information about the Wake County Transit Plan, you can visit their website or Facebook page. For more information about living, working, and commuting in Wake County, contact Real Estate Experts at 919-813-6449. With our local expertise, we can help you make the best decision for you or your family as you become residents of Wake County or the Triangle area.

If you are interested in learning about the neighborhoods surrounding downtown Raleigh and other properties in the greater Triangle area, visit us online.  Call us today at 919-813-6449 or e-mail us at
info@realestateexperts.net for additional information.  We can’t wait to welcome you to your new home.

 

 

Cary, North Carolina Named #1 Boomtown in the US

Cary North CarolinaCary North Carolina is back in the news, in a big way! Just last month, Money magazine named Cary, North Carolina as the best place to live in North Carolina, and the 37th  best place to live in the US. Now, Cary has been named the Number 1 boomtown in the entire country on SmartAsset’s list of the “ Top 10 Boomtowns of 2016.” Cary North Carolina scored a 100 percent based on such factors as: net migration rate, housing growth, unemployment, 2015-16 change in unemployment, and GDP growth. Raleigh was also included in the list and ranked 10th, scoring an 87.05.

SmartAsset is a personal finance technology company headquartered in New York, NY that uses financial modeling to power advice on major financial decisions. According to SmartAsset, while it is smaller than most of its neighbors, Cary is becoming a force to be reckoned with. Cary’s housing growth rate of 9.1% is among the highest rates in SmartAsset’s analysis. For many years, the presence of strong research institutions has drawn tech companies and entrepreneurs to the region.

Key Factors

For this study, SmartAsset collected data on 572 of the largest cities in the country. They utilized these five factors to identify the top 10 boomtowns of 2016:

  • Net migration rate: The number of people who have immigrated to a city minus the number of people who have emigrated from that city between July 1, 2014 and July 1, 2015. The net migration rate includes all population growth that isn’t related to births or deaths.
  • Housing growth rate. The percent change in the number of housing units between 2014 and 2015.
  • Unemployment rate. The number of unemployed people who were actively looking for work in August 2016, as a percentage of the total labor force.
  • Annual change in the unemployment rate. This number was based on preliminary labor force data from August 2015 to August 2016.
  • GDP growth rate. The annual growth in total output for the period ranging from 2010 to 2015.

Data Sources

  • GDP growth rates were obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.
  • Unemployment rates were obtained from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Net migration rates and housing growth rates were obtained from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Cary North Carolina On Top of SmartAsset’s Top 10 Boomtowns of 2016

Below is the entire list:

  1. Cary
  2. Fort Collins, Colorado
  3. Fort Myers, Florida
  4. Longmont, Colorado
  5. Bend, Oregon
  6. Orem, Utah
  7. Kissimmee, Florida
  8. Midland, Texas
  9. Bismarck, North Dakota
  10. Raleigh
So if you have been thinking of relocating to the Triangle area, you will definitely want to consider putting down roots in this amazing town! Visit Real Estate Expert’s web site to learn more about Cary Real Estate  and about the best neighborhoods in Cary.
Give us a call at 919-813-6449 or send us an email to  info@realestateexperts.net to find out more about living in Cary, and visit realestateexperts.net to view current homes for sale in the area.

Where’s the Best Place to Live in North Carolina?

Best place to live in North Carolina

Photo courtesy of downtowncary.org.

Money magazine recently named Cary, North Carolina as the best place to live in North Carolina, and the 37th  best place to live in the US.  “Cary offers a solid school system, safe streets, healthy job opportunities – plus 39 greenway trails and a massive nature preserve,” according to Money.

The Town of Cary

SAS Headquarters in Cary, North Carolina

Photo courtesy of sas.com.

The Town of Cary provides the benefits of small-town living with the perks of a thriving metropolis. The town has a median population of 155,227, which has grown approximately 64 percent since 2000.  Cary is situated between Raleigh and Research Triangle Park, offering easy access to the Raleigh Durham International Airport, NC State University, Duke University, and the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

Employers in Cary

Cary is home to major employers such as SAS, Fidelity, Verizon, MetLife, and Relias Learning, among others. According to Money magazine, jobs in Cary are expected to increase at a rate of 11.3% over the next five years.  Cary residents who commute to work in Raleigh or RTP can look forward to commute times that may be cut in half, thanks to passing the Wake Transportation Bond earlier this month.

Downtown Cary

Downtown Cary North Carolina

Image courtesy of the Town of Cary.

Downtown Cary North Carolina

Photo courtesy of The Cary.

Downtown Cary is in the midst of several major revitalization projects: the Academy Street streetscape, upgrading underground utilities and adding new benches. Cary is also working on a $5 million downtown park.

“You can start to see, but the cool part is that you can start to feel it,” said Ted Boyd, Cary’s downtown development manager. “Especially in the evenings people are walking and strolling around downtown and sitting outside grabbing a bite to eat.”

Cary Parks and Greenway

Cary also has amazing parks and outdoor spaces, with a total of 35 parks and 82 miles of greenway.  Recently, Cary was awarded the National Gold Medal Grand Plaque Award for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management.  According to Doug McRainey, Cary’s Director of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources, the quality of the Parks Department is a reflection of one of Cary’s major priorities. “It’s the extensiveness of our programs, our well-designed facilities and our many unique features,” for example, the Hemlock Bluffs Nature Preserve, Koka Booth Amphitheater and WakeMed Soccer Park (home of the Carolina Railhawks).
“One thing people universally praise about Cary is the quality of our parks,” McRainey said. “Cary and its citizens embrace quality of life and the town makes an investment in that system.” Living in Cary is also safe and affordable, with median home prices of $319,000 and average property taxes of $3,168. All of these things are what makes Cary the best place to live in North Carolina.
There is so much more to say about Cary, and we would love to tell you all about it!  Visit Real Estate Expert’s web site to learn about the best neighborhoods in Cary NC.
Give us a call at 919-813-6449 or send us an email to  info@realestateexperts.net to find out more about living in Cary, and visit our website to view current homes for sale in the area.

Neighborhood Spotlight: The Courtyards at O’Kelly Chapel

home

As the older adult population continues to expand, more and more excellent senior living opportunities are popping up across the Triangle. The Courtyards at O’Kelly Chapel, located off O’Kelly Chapel Road in Cary, is no exception. This active adult community combines the best of both worlds: a quiet, private retreat-like neighborhood that is conveniently located near restaurants, attractions, and shopping.

kitchen

This Epcon Community features 92 maintenance-free, ranch-style homes, available in three models featuring open floor plans with plenty of space and natural light. Homes range in size from approximately 1,519 to 2,769 square feet and start at just $325,400. Three home models are available and include features such as two-car garages, luxurious gourmet kitchens, private dens, abundant storage space, and private courtyards with optional screened porches or sunrooms.

clubhouse

Daily living at the Courtyards is all about community. You will get to know your neighbors quickly as you enjoy the Courtyards Clubhouse, which is the centerpiece for social, recreational, and fitness activity. The Clubhouse is centrally located, surrounded by walking trails, ponds, and green space. Best of all, you won’t be hindered by the burden of yard work, exterior maintenance, or interior maintenance: it’s all included in the cost of your new home and handled by Epcon. You can enjoy a stress-free life of leisure, whether meeting up with neighbors for a friendly game of cards at the Clubhouse, swimming laps at the pool, or enjoying drinks with friends in your private courtyard.

map

The Courtyards at O’Kelly Chapel is conveniently located near Cary, Durham, and Morrisville. Nearby attractions include La Farm Bakery, the Fresh Market, and Publix Supermarket. Park West Village Shopping Center is less than four miles away, and features retailers such as Target, T.J. Maxx, PetSmart, and Vestique Boutique. Eateries include Noodles and Company, Rise Biscuits and Donuts, Chipotle, and FireBirds Woodfired Grille. Park West Village also includes Earth Fare grocery store, a movie theater, The Joint Chirporactic Center, and Triangle Family Eye Care.

Epcon is currently selling its final homes in Phase 3, so if you are interested in one of these gems, don’t delay! There are only a few left. Give us a call today at 919-813-6449 or send us an email to  info@realestateexperts.net. Visit us online at realestateexperts.net.

 

New Senior Living Community Coming to Cary

Plans for a new senior living community in Cary, NC are underway, with construction set to begin this summer. “Paraclete Professional Park” will feature a 475,000-square-foot “life care” community, including 240 independent living units and 130 assisted living units, office space, and possibly a 150-room hotel. The community, which will be located on Kildaire Farm Road across from WakeMed Cary Hospital, was proposed by Mangum Development, LLC.

Photo courtesy of Mangum Development.

Recently, the Cary Town Council approved the rezoning of about 23 acres across from WakeMed on Kildaire Farm Road from residential to mixed-use to allow for the building of Paraclete Professional Park.

Image courtesy of Mangum Development.

The project comes at a time when the town has been trying to respond to the need for senior housing, as nearly 5,000 Cary residents turn 65 years and older each year. The “Aging Issues Task Force,” a group of Cary officials and residents appointed by the town, completed a study in 2015 into how well Cary serves its senior residents. While the report said the town serves those 65 and up well, it also indicated that the community may lack adequate housing for the growing population.

Kevin Mangum of Mangum Development, a fourth-generation business owner and fifth-generation Cary native, develops world-class mixed-use projects. As Lead Developer for Paraclete, Mangum says the community will be “metropolitan” and “high-quality, but not ostentatious.” He continues, “You could expect to see some very nice amenities usually reserved for places like New York or Miami.”

Photo courtesy of Mangum Development.

The facility will have a walkable environment and a campus-like feel, complete with central gardens and fountains. Amenities will include covered parking for owners and physicians, a generous 4:1 parking ratio, “Class A” finishes, such as imported marble floors, and dining and shopping within walking distance at Waverly Place. “We think a large focus for baby boomers will be a desire for living near shops, restaurants, and excellent medical care,” said Mangum. “Paraclete happens to be next to a hospital and Waverly Place, and is convenient for family to visit their loved ones.” There are plenty of hotels just minutes away, including a Comfort Suites, Hampton Inn, Courtyard Marriott, and Extended Stay America.

Wind Down Wednesday. Photo courtesy of Waverly Place.

Waverly Place underwent a major facelift in 2015, including a multi-million dollar interior and exterior renovation of 15-year-tenant Whole Foods. Other shops and restaurants at Waverly Place include Cinebistro, Whisk Cookware and Cooking Classes, Hand and Stone Massage, Violets Boutique, and Fresca Cafe. In addition, Waverly Place hosts various free events throughout the year, such as “Yoga on the Promenade;” “Wind Down Wednesdays,” featuring free concerts; and Flamenco music at Fresca Cafe.

Paraclete Professional Park is expected to open in early 2018.

For more information about senior housing and retirement communities in the Triangle, click here.

For detailed information on local 55+ neighborhoods, click here.

For information and updates about Paraclete Professional Park, contact Real Estate Experts any time at 919-813-6449 or info@realestateexperts.net. Visit us online at realestateexperts.net.

Property Tax Rate Update

Triangle area counties have proposed budgets this month that will affect property taxes beginning July 1.

tax

In Orange County, Chapel Hill Town Manager Roger Stancil has proposed a $61.7 million budget for fiscal year 2016-17, which represents a property tax increase of a little less than 1 percent.  Since the last revaluation in fiscal year 2010, Chapel Hill’s tax rate has increased 3 cents or 6.1%, which translates into less than 1% per year and less than the rate of inflation. The last increase in property tax rates was the addition of 1 penny for the Debt Management Fund in fiscal year 2015 to kick-start the Town’s capital improvement program.

Chatham County City Manager Renee Paschal has proposed a $107 million budget for the fiscal year, which includes a property tax increase of 1.19 cents per $100 valuation. This translates into a tax increase of approximately $11.90 per year for a $100,000 home.The tax increase would fund a new Health Sciences Building for Central Carolina Community College, a new elementary school in northeast Chatham (slated to open in 2021), and an expansion of the new planned high school from 800 to 1,000 students (also slated to open in 2021). According to Paschal, this is the first tax increase for Chatham County since 2010-11.

In Durham County, City Manager Tom Bonfield has proposed a $403.7 million budget for the fiscal year. If the budget is approved by the City Council, it would be the largest budget in Durham’s history, up 4 percent from last year. The proposed $15.5 million increase would include 38 new city positions, 20 additional police officers, renewing the Durham holiday parade, a new downtown parking garage, and implementation of paid on-street parking. For homeowners, the proposal translates into a city property tax rate of 56.07 cents per $100 valuation, which is approximately 3.05 cents below the current rate. Due to a countywide reappraisal in which tax values increased 16 percent citywide, residents will not necessarily see a lower property tax bill. The proposed tax rate would result in $1,005 tax bill on a $179,297 home, which is the current median value of a home in Durham.

In Wake County, Interim Cary Town Manager Mike Bajorek has proposed a $319.2 million budget for the fiscal year. The budget will include capital improvement projects, such as a downtown public-private partnership with Northwoods Associates, LLC, a new Fire Station on Walnut Street, an expansion to the Cary Police Station evidence room, and improvements to the USA Baseball National Training Facility. For homeowners, Bajorek proposed lowering the property tax rate to 35 cents per $100 valuation, from 37 cents, because of Wake County’s recent property revaluation. If approved, the tax rate would remain the lowest in Wake County, and result in a tax bill of $750 for a $200,000 home.

Raleigh City Manager Ruffin Hall has proposed a $858.6 million budget for the fiscal year, which represents an increase of 3 percent from this year’s $832.5 million budget. The budget would include financing debt the city took on to buy the former Dorthea Dix Hospital property for $52 million, expanding Raleigh’s affordable housing program with 125 additional units, adding a 15-member crew in a new transportation department to clean up downtown Raleigh, and finding a replacement for Fire Station 1 on Dawson Street in the Warehouse District. Homeowners would be looking at a 2 cent property tax rate increase, which would translate into an extra $95.16 on a home valued at $251,300 (the median cost of a home in Raleigh).

Downtown Cary Transforming into Lively Cultural Hub

If you have traveled around Cary lately, you’ve no doubt encountered frustration with construction traffic as the town undergoes a major revitalization of the dated downtown area. The temporary inconvenience will be worth it in the Maplong-run, however, according to Town Manager Ted Boyd, who says that the ultimate vision is to ensure downtown Cary becomes a dynamic and unique place to work, shop, and gather. “The revitalization effort is going very well,” he says. “There have been growing pains…in order for us to grow, we had to incorporate a new infrastructure. Most of the utilities were 50 years old or older.”

Streetscape improvements are underway along the mile-long downtown stretch of North and South Academy Streets, with the goals of improving traffic movement, traffic calming, and pedestrian mobility. The town’s focus is making South Academy Street a venue for special events, festivals, concerts, and other activities, with the inclusion of a downtown park. This urban outdoor venue, which will serve as an extension of the Cary Arts Center, will include a multipurpose grass area, a community gathering space, an outdoor theater, public art displays, and a central fountain. The park is currently Downtown Park Planunder construction; however, lead Landscape Architect Sarah Alexander says that the unusual amount of rain this year has caused delays. The park is expected to be completed in fall 2016.

The Cary Arts Center has also received a revamp. Originally renovated from a 1930s-era public school building, the center provides a 393-seat theater, classrooms, studios for gallery exhibitions, ceramic arts studios and a kiln, and construction/textile labs. Its recent renovations by three artists include an exterior sculpture for two sides of a new theater fly tower, the theater curtain, and a backlit transparent wall connecting the three floors of the building through a glass stairway.

Next door to the Arts Center, the town will replace the Cary Community Library with a new 22,000 to 25,000-foot, Public Art_curtain and fly towertwo-story library that will sit on three acres. Adjacent to the library, the town will construct a four-level, 350-space parking deck serving the Cary Arts Center, library, downtown park, and future private development. Construction is set to begin in 2017 and the library should open its doors in 2018.

A new boutique hotel, The Mayton Inn, is set to open later this month, with 44 guest rooms and its own restaurant, The Verandah. Led by award-winning Executive Chef Jeff Gompers, the gourmet eatery will be open to both hotel guests and the general public.

Moviegoers are already enjoying the renovated downtown theater simply called “The Cary,” which opened in 2014 and features independent and cult films, as well as live performances, in a quaint environment. Concessions are offered, including wine and beer.

With the growing popularity of craft beer, Pharmacy Bottle + Beverage, an indoor/outdoor brewery, has opened in the heart of downtown. The brewery allows patrons to bring in food from other restaurants or home, and is also pet-friendly.

If you’ve been thinking of relocating to Cary, you may now have one more incentive to set your plans in motion! Contact Broker Jodi Bakst or Paul Barrett to find out more about what living in Cary has to offer: 919.928.5131, jodi@realestateexperts.net, or paul@realestateexperts.net. Visit them online at www.realestateexperts.net.