Sunday, July 10, 2016


In several months Raleigh will likely close Moore Square for park renovations. Previous cost estimations of $12.6 million even unsettled the nerves of former liberal Raleigh City Councilman Thomas Crowder:

"The latest estimates for the square’s revitalization – which includes an outdoor cafe, granite plaza and tiered lawns – show the project will cost $12.6 million, less than earlier projections. Raleigh has debt capacity to borrow $15.3 million without a ballot referendum.

“Moore Square plays a key role in shaping and redefining the experiences of downtown Raleigh,” parks planner Cassie Schumacher-Georgopoulos said, adding that the renovation will create “an outdoor living space for downtown.”

Plans for Moore Square were drawn up years ago but were shelved because of funding shortfalls during the recession. Now Raleigh can afford the project, but it’s competing with other on-hold park needs.

Moore Square stirs an ongoing debate about whether the city should invest more money in downtown or shift the focus elsewhere following the city center’s recent successes.

Councilman Thomas Crowder said the Moore Square price tag raises concerns, even with the available debt capacity.

“We’ve got other community centers that are over 40 years old that need repair,” he said. “I’m all for renovating this park, but the tune of $12 to 15 million concerns me.”

News & Observer - April 15, 2014 

What went beyond notice during the initial schematic design were the bathrooms. 

Yes, that's an actual picture from the original schematic design for Moore Square. Your Raleigh parks money was going to be busy establishing "educational bathrooms."

Here's what Raleigh had to say about it in the design proposal:

"The new public restrooms located within the tilted lawn landform could become a new source of civic pride and an emblematic symbol of Raleigh’s commitment to sustainability and creating world class public spaces."

Not only was Raleigh going to have a destination park in the form of Dix, but we were also going to have "destination" toilets. They would be a new source of "civic pride." Yes, who doesn't get all emotional over their city having educational bathrooms. 

Just imagine, not only would people travel to Raleigh for the park, but they would be drawn to use the bathroom in Moore Square as well.