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Hillsborough Street is a prominent business and cultural thoroughfare through Raleigh, North Carolina. The street serves as a center for social life among North Carolina State University students. Nearby Meredith College students also frequent the street's area businesses. Numerous bars, restaurants, coffee shops, convenience stores and banks are located along a strip of Hillsborough Street that borders the university. The road is also a heavily-traveled corridor, linking the town of Cary with downtown Raleigh. Additionally, the road passes by the North Carolina State Veterinarian School, North Carolina State University Centennial Biomedical Campus, the North Carolina State Fairgrounds, Sacred Heart Cathedral, and Raleigh's Pullen Park.
- 1 Geography and history
- 2 Places of worship
- 3 Special Events
- 4 Notable businesses
- 5 Education Institutions
- 6 Hillsborough Street Community Service Corporation
- 7 Redesign
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Geography and history
The Hillsborough Street is one of the four original streets designated to radiate outward in the cardinal directions from Capital Square, each leading to one of the former State Capital Cities. A modern alternate route to Hillsborough Street in Raleigh is Western Boulevard, which parallels the street to the south. Wade Avenue is an alternate route to Hillsborough Street to the north. Hillsborough Street terminates in the east at the North Carolina State Capitol at Salisbury Street. The street's western terminus is at the Cary town limits, where the roadway continues as East Chatham Street after crossing Interstate 40. North Carolina Highway 54 begins on Hillsborough Street at the Interstate 440 Beltline interchange and travels west for one mile (1.6 km) before forking onto Chapel Hill Road. NCSU's Bell Tower is clearly visible at the street's intersection with Pullen Road. Hillsborough Street takes its name from the city Hillsborough, a former capital city of North Carolina. Like many downtown Raleigh streets, the street's name is derived from a city of the same name in the state; though, initially the street was named Hillsboro Road and was a country road many people used to drive to Hillsborough. The street was first constructed in 1792 as part of the capital city's initial layout.
The land comprising Hillsborough Street was once the site of the plantation of David Cameron. Cameron established St. Mary's College on Hillsborough Street; the school later became a private girls' school, St. Mary's School. A streetcar traversing Hillsborough Street connected North Carolina State University to Raleigh shortly after the college was built.
Places of worship
Hillsborough Street is home to many notable and historic churches of Raleigh. These churches include:
- Sacred Heart Cathedral
- Pullen Memorial Baptist Church
- First Church of Christ, Scientist
- Hillyer Memorial Christian Church
- Free Church of the Good Shepherd
Basketball and Football victories
Following every football and basketball win the NCSU Bell Tower is illuminated red and students are encouraged to "Storm the Bell Tower" and show their WolfPack pride. After the NC State basketball team won the national championship in 1983, students converged on Hillsborough Street to celebrate, with at least one injury to a police officer. Subsequently, the police department cracked down on problem bars on Hillsborough Street, which resulted in many bar closures. The closures included seven bars located at Hillsborough Square.
Paint the Town Red and NCSU Homecoming
As part of NCSU's homecoming week since 2006, many businesses along Hillsborough Street agree to have groups of NCSU students paint their windows red, the main athletic color of the NC State Wolfpack. The spectacle was deemed "Paint the Town Red". Each year, alumni, students, faculty and staff as well as Wolfpack faithful fill the NC State Campus and surrounding areas painting the town red. Onlookers congregate on Hillsborough Street for the annual Homecoming Parade and watch as dozens of school spirited floats make their way towards the Bell Tower.
WRAL-TV Raleigh Christmas Parade
An annual Christmas parade is held along Hillsborough Street among various other Raleigh streets every November. The event, sponsored by WRAL-TV attracts Raleighites, NCSU students, and visitors from around the area.
Krispy Kreme Challenge
The Krispy Kreme Challenge, a race invented and organized by NC State Park Scholars with a majority of runners attending NC State, is a new NC State tradition which attracted over 7,500 runners in 2010. Part of Hillsborough Street is closed in order for runners to make their way from the NC State Bell Tower to the Krispy Kreme on Peace Street. The objective is to run to the Krispy Kreme, eat 3 boxes of doughnuts and run back to the Bell Tower in under one hour. The event raises money to support the North Carolina Children's Hospital, and in 2010 raised $122,000,000.
City of Oaks Marathon
The Raleigh City of Oaks Marathon and Rex Healthcare Half Marathon annually attracts thousands of athletes to the capital city. The course is revered for the diversity of the landscape, showcasing the Triangle’s natural areas and the capital’s rich, Southern history.
Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure
The Komen NC Triangle Race for the Cure, hosted at Meredith College, raises significant funds and awareness for the fight against breast cancer, celebrates breast cancer survivorship, and honors those who have lost their battle with the disease. All net funds from the Komen Race for the Cure go to research, education, screening and treatment programs.
9/11 Memorial Service
On the tenth anniversary of September 11, 2001 NC State Chancellor Randy Woodson lead the campus and community in a memorial service at the Bell Tower recognizing and honoring all those who perished in the tragic events on 9/11. The service paid tribute to all NCSU alumni who have served in the military. To coincide with this event, the Hillsborough Street Community Service Corporation enlisted the help of over 35 NCSU student groups and organizations to decorate the store-fronts on Hillsborough Street with patriotic imagery. These groups volunteered their time to show their support for, and appreciation of, all the first responders and citizens who lost their lives on that fateful day in 2001. They also thanked all the troops who have served and continue to serve our country in the armed services.
A long standing tradition for NCSU students are the Hillsborough Street Hikes. Four hikes a year attract students to the street early in the evening till the early morning hours after the bars and restaurants close to walk with their friends from one end of the street to the other on the sidewalks flooding the street with Wolfpack Pride.
• The Hillsborough Street Haunted Halloween Hike is traditionally on the Saturday night before Halloween and features thousands of people in costumes of every imaginable kind.
• The Hillsborough Street Santa Hike is the traditional end of Fall Semester Hike held the night of the last day class each fall semester. Participants show up in their best Santa, Mrs. Claus, Elf and reindeer costumes.
• The STATE Patty’s Day Hike celebrate everyone’s love of St. Patrick Day. Wear green, and discover your inner Irish!
• Hillsborough Street Hike: The original classic, this hike celebrates the end of the spring semester and academic year. Each year on the last day of classes students fill the street in the evening to commemorate the end of another school year.
Art to Wear
Art to Wear is an annual fashion show featuring the creations of NC State’s most creative students. The NCSU College of Design and College of Textiles team together to showcase the young talent that can be found at NC State as well as its connectivity to the clothing design merchants found around Raleigh, NC. The event is normally followed by an after event which fills the local establishments with customers long into the night celebrating another fantastic show.
Although the street is just 3 miles long from the Capital Building to the beltway, Hillsborough Street offers the citizens of Raleigh over 60 restaurants, eateries, and food on the go establishments. With numerous bars, clubs, and nightlife venues as well, Hillsborough Street is developing into a hospitality destination. A diverse business environment including professional services, banks, technology services, and health and body care businesses. The street also offers a variety of necessary services and retail options including health and beauty care, salons, convenience stores, auto repair and tattoo shops, and numerous book stores selling WolfPack gear. One notable businesses on Hillsborough Street is Players' Retreat, a saloon that opened more than 50 years ago. The bar encompasses a former restaurant, the Morning Room, which served as the unofficial headquarters of Hargrove Bowles' 1972 gubernatorial campaign against Jim Holshauser. It was also a frequent hangout of the Wolfpack basketball players, of Norman Sloan, in the 1970s. Mitch's Tavern was used for scenes in the film Bull Durham in the 1980s. The publishing company Lulu is headquartered on Hillsborough Street.
There are four major education institutions located on Hillsborough Street. The first, and largest, of these is North Carolina State University. Boasting over 34,000 students, 6,000 faculty and staff and 170,000 living alumni NCSU is a comprehensive university known for its education and research. It has become one of the leading land-grant institutions in the nation. Meredith College is also located on the street, with approximately 2,200 female students and 138 faculty members, Meredith College has grown to become one of the largest independent private women’s college in the United States. The third education institution is the all-girls boarding and day school St. Mary’s School. St Mary’s is dedicated to academic excellence and personal achievement for grades 9-12. Campbell University Law School is also located on the Street.
Hillsborough Street Community Service Corporation
The Hillsborough Street Community Service Corporation is an independent, not for profit, business improvement district created by a partnership between the City of Raleigh, NC State University and the property owners and businesses on Hillsborough Street in the fall of 2009. The HSCSC territory is about 2.5 miles long running on both sides of Hillsborough Street from St. Mary’s School to the beltline (including Morgan St. and a few side streets) and includes a diverse collection of businesses, organizations, institutions and residential options. The Corporation’s mission is to make the Hillsborough Street community a distinct destination in Raleigh by providing services and programs that improve the economic sustainability of the businesses, and increases the market value of the properties, within the territory. The HSCSC provides the following services:
• Economic Development
• Special Event Programs and Services
The HSCSC is working hard to establish Hillsborough Street as one of the Triangle Areas most prominent destinations as well as make the Hillsborough Street community a better place to live, work, play, shop, dine, learn and visit.
http://www.hillsboroughstreet.org (HSCSC Official Website)
http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001537223710 (Hillsborough Street)
http://www.facebook.com/hillsboroughstreet (Live It Up on Hillsborough Street)
After a study was conducted in 2002, the city of Raleigh proceeded with efforts to revitalize and redesign Hillsborough Street and the surrounding area. The project was intended to rejuvenate the area, improve traffic flow, and increase pedestrian safety. City council members, however, were unable to come to a consensus on how best to accomplish this project until early 2007, when a plan to replace two traffic signals with roundabouts was approved. Construction was to be completed in 2008, but $9.9 million in funding was not approved until March 2009. NC State student Joseph Carnevale gained international attention after his arrest, in June 2009, for creating a monster out of construction barrels at the Hillsborough Street construction site. Meanwhile, officials and planners continue to disagree on where to designate customer parking, so that local businesses can increase their sales revenue.
- Geary, Bob (2009-05-27). "Keep Hillsborough Street funky". Independent Weekly. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- City of Raleigh - Hillsborough Street Redesign
- Technician Online - Hillsborough Street is seeing red (10-30-2006)
- WRAL-TV Raleigh Christmas Parade 2005
- Bracken, David (2009-03-20). "About those Hillsborough roundabouts ...". News & Observer blog. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- Ovaska, Sarah (2009-06-19). "Barrel Monster's renown spreads". Raleigh News & Observer. Retrieved 2009-06-19.[dead link]
- City of Raleigh - Hillsborough Street Redesign Plan (Feb 7, 2007)
- WRAL reports on the approved Hillsborough Street plan (Feb 20, 2007)