Government Affairs Update: City Council Puts Resources into Downtown Revitalization


Raleigh Council Dedicates Funding to Downtown Vibrancy

​The Raleigh City Council has been considering numerous ways to enhance our downtown’s vibrancy and security. Previous initiatives have included private security to patrol hot spots, up-fit grants for building facades, and improved lighting. They have now put more resources into the effort, including $765,000 in infrastructure improvements, and $585,000 in homelessness diversion resources. The money comes from unspent capital reserve funds: unallocated and unspent dollars available to the council to either put in the city’s reserves or to allocate for non-recurring projects.
The new infrastructure improvements include new intersection and sidewalk murals, wayfinding signs, improved restaurant and business waste collection systems to reduce the number of trash cans on sidewalks, and replacing urban tree grates with flexible covers to reduce tripping hazards and improve the look of our sidewalks. These smaller individual projects will all work collectively along with previous initiatives (like improved lighting) to reduce visual clutter in our downtown and brighten our primary tourism and employment center.
Equally exciting, the city’s new homelessness diversion pilot is getting a financial boost: $585,000 has been allocated to keep people in their homes and prevent them from becoming homeless in the first place, and to getting the unhoused directly back into housing, reducing the number of people waiting to get into shelters and/or experiencing emergencies while homeless. These diversion programs are often initiated by Downtown Raleigh Alliance ambassadors who experience transient and homeless individuals as part of their important roles in our city’s core. By providing more direct funding for housing and case management, less people will feel compelled to congregate downtown seeking shelter and services, and the City saves funds by minimizing the number of emergencies they must respond to.
There is still a lot of work being done to improve Downtown Raleigh’s attractiveness to our residents and visitors, but these are two great steps. The Raleigh Chamber continues to advocate for more resources and focus on our downtown – we look forward to more announcements to come. 
To learn more about our GA priorities you can visit our webpage.

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Kassie Hoffman
Kassie pens down all the news from the world of politics on ANH.