29 July 2006

An ironic celebration


Like many American cities in the 1970s, Raleigh, NC decided to close off its main downtown thoroughfare and create a "pedestrian mall." And, like those in other cities, it failed miserably. No one went downtown except to go to the courthouse or to buy Krispy Kremes (not that the latter is not a noble pursuit...), and downtown was lame. Finally, people began to see the light. Roads were made to be driven on! Now, Raleigh, like so many others, has begun a downtown revitalization project. Key to this plan has been the reopening of the pedestrian mall, in our case, Fayetteville Street.

Today, the street will reopen with a big civic hoo-hah, called "Raleigh Wide Open." I just hope the street lives up to the hype.

ironically, the city is celebrating the reopening of the street by blocking it off and holding a street party on it. I'll check it out when we are actually allowed to drive on it.

2 comments:

Liz said...

Sometimes going to the courthouse is a noble pursuit too. ;-)

Nanci said...

Romantic, some might even say ;-)