TODAY: CAM Groundbreaking Ceremony

TODAY: CAM Groundbreaking Ceremony

May, 11, 2010, by Jedidiah

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After a few years of changes after changes in the planning, scope and design of the new Contemporary Art Museum (designed by Clearscapes and Pugh+Scarpa Architects) in the Warehouse District, the group will finally break ground today on the new space.

Despite the change in scale over time, this is a very exciting project for Downtown Raleigh and the Warehouse District in particular. Go to this area on any Friday night (especially First Fridays) and you’ll know that it is already becoming the place to be in the night hours of the weekend. Add a fantastic new museum and a new multi-modal transit center into the mix and this area will be the place to be 24-7.

Next up for the Warehouse District? We think a medium scale music venue could establish it as the primo district for culture in North Carolina.

Raleigh’s Contemporary Art Museum (CAM) will officially break ground at its future home, 409 W. Martin Street, on Tuesday, May 11, 2010, at 5:00 p.m. The renovated 20,000 sq. ft. historic warehouse-turned-museum will serve as the only non-collecting museum of contemporary art + design in North Carolina.

Jay Gates, CAM Interim Director, City of Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker and Dean Marvin Malecha, NC State College of Design, will lead the ceremony. Predicts Mayor Meeker: “The opening of the Contemporary Art Museum will be key to the revitalization of Raleigh’s Warehouse District. Its location near the City’s Convention Center and planned Union Station Transit Center, in addition to its innovative art and design exhibitions, will make the new museum an important cultural destination for our region.”

The movement of the project from concept to reality has been made possible by many individuals, foundations and a special initiative launched last year to obtain valuable Historic and New Market Tax Credits for the museum’s redevelopment. The tax credit programs will provide a direct subsidy of more than $2 million for CAM, or about one half of the cost of the museum’s redevelopment.
The new museum will house three galleries as well as dedicated educational spaces. Additionally, it will host changing exhibitions and the critically acclaimed Design Camp for high school students, while expanding the existing, community-wide adult and youth art and design programming.

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  • arthurb3
    05/11 01:41 PM

    This will be a nice addition! Another night club or bar—I could care less—but this and the amphitheatre are great additions!

  • Molly
    05/11 02:07 PM

    This looks awesome!  The square logo with CAM in it looks like Cameron Village Library’s stickers they put on the back of books that say CAM, too.

  • hackles10
    05/11 02:07 PM

    Great news.  The building looks cool.  I did a bit of research on non-collecting museums and its an interesting concept.  Along with the bars and restaurants in the area this should really help the “beautification” of the warehouse district.

  • Rostel
    05/11 08:56 PM

    This will be a failure.  I hate to be pessimistic.  Its a shame they never built the original design.  That design was very iconic and would ahve been a huge boost for dt and the warehouse district especially.

  • Ivory
    05/12 10:43 AM

    I think this will contribute nicely to the warehouse district. Looking forward to checking it out next year!

  • Chris
    05/12 11:12 AM

    As a resident of dt, I agree with Rostel 1000000%.  Although it is good to see some redevelopment in the warehouse district, second tier buildings are not going to cut it in the future.  Construction should have been halted until the original plans could be financed.  Hopefully I’m wrong…would love to see more people and businesses in the area.

  • hackles10
    05/12 11:16 AM

    Does anyone have a link the original design that is causing so much disappointment around here?  I thought the building looked cool and the size/structure was appropriate for the warehouse district…but that is without any knowledge of the prior design/s

  • Jedidiah
    05/12 11:32 AM


    Click on the first “changes” link and you’ll see a slideshow of the original proposal that includes the “beehive” residential tower.


  • richardfoc
    05/12 11:54 AM

    Are some of you people suggesting that CAM will fail because it’s in a “second tier building”? That is ridiculous! Last time I checked a museum is made up of WAY more than the building that houses it. Whether CAM lives or dies it will do so on its own merits and most certainly will not fail due to the perceived lack of an iconic edifice or because there isn’t a residential/mixed use component.

  • Chris
    05/12 01:22 PM

    Obviously this is an extremely outdated website, but its interesting to see all of the old plans.

    CAM is about 3/4 the way down…

  • semiDave
    05/17 10:53 AM

    Sorry. but we do not need more 1-3 story buildings downtown.  I think they should of kept the old idea and added the condo space above.

  • hackles10
    05/17 11:10 AM

    Thanks for the link….I guess I should have read the full article before focusing on the comments. Eveyone needs to take a step back from the ledge.  Its pretty obvious that anyone with half a brain should be able to process why the “residential” aspect of this building has been cut out.  There are 200 units within walking distance of this lot that sit unsold, and have been that way for some time now.  It makes complete sense not to go forward with this aspect of the project.  I am sure when things get moving again they could always add this honeycomb/residential feature.  As for semiDave’s comment, thats just absurd, this is the Warehouse District, there isn’t “a” building over 3 stories, let alone using that measure as some sort of minimum.  Plenty of major cities have important 1-3 story buildings woven into their downtown fabric, we will see the skyline grow soon enough when the economy changes but I doubt you will ever see the warehouse district littered with 10+ story buildings.

  • pharmacy technician
    05/24 10:56 AM

    nice post. thanks.

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