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This edition is sponsored by Raleigh Convergence.


 


A new downtown biz serves dog parents 


Keily Smith noticed most downtown-dwelling dog parents were leaving Downtown Raleigh for doggie daycare. 

So in November, the Raleigh area native opened up Little Pup Lounge at 510 S. Person Street in Downtown Raleigh. 

 
"We specialize in small dogs because we wanted to offer a crate-free environment for all of our pups," Keily said. 

"They have run of building both during the day and in the evenings. We want all the dogs to feel at home and have a space set up that provides fun play time and also the comforts of home." [info]


📸: Little Pup Lounge

Message from Raleigh Convergence:


Content + strategy, delivered locally. Whether you're promoting an event or a new business, Raleigh Convergence can help you reach a growing and engaged audience of locals.

An accessibly-priced sponsorship comes with an optional content strategy call to help you hone your message for optimal performance. Best of all, when you support Raleigh Convergence, you're supporting another local business!
 
REACH ENGAGED RALEIGHITES>>

Ideas to watch in 2020

As we start a new year, Raleigh Convergence is sharing 20 ideas to watch in 2020. [see 1-5 + ideas 6-9 + ideas 10-14]
 
IDEA #15: The 2020 Census 

The 2020 Census might not be at the top of your list of community-shaping efforts for the future of Raleigh -- but it should be. 

Here is what you'll want to know about getting an accurate 2020 Census count, and how it matters to our future. [read at RaleighConvergence.com]
 

Idea #16: More lower-proof or alcohol-free cocktail options

A Bon Appetit article forecasted the market for "bottled low- and no-alcohol beverages" to triple between 2018-2022. Raleigh, a leader in the food & beverage space, is already on it.

Raleigh Raw hosted a booze-free cocktail party last year (Hooked on Tonics) and one of Raleigh's top chefs, Chef Scott Crawford, is an advocate for sobriety. There are three spirit-free cocktails on Crawford & Son's curated drinks menu -- expect more options like this in the future on menus around Raleigh as the trend catches on.


Idea #17: The third restaurant from Brewery Bhavana/Bida Manda owners opens

Luang Prabang, from the creative owners of Brewery Bhavana and Bida Manda, is expected to open in fall of 2020, with the gorgeous terrace views of Downtown Raleigh. [read more]

Idea #18: Raleigh's downtown hotels upgrade

Two highly anticipated Downtown Raleigh hotels will open in early 2020: independent hotel The Longleaf Hotel and boutique brand the Origin Hotel (March).

Idea #19: Raleigh's start-up scene grows

HQ Raleigh's expansions and outreach to different communities is a sign of of how the entrepreneurial scene is maturing. Loading Dock's expansion to Prince Hall is another. 

Your ideas:

I asked for the things you’re looking forward to in 2020, and a few of you answered.

Idea #20 from subscriber Matt Lail:

"My vision for 2020 is that Raleigh takes a HARD look at affordable housing. Raleigh is getting harder and harder for people just starting out, or those from lower-income families. I don't know what the answer is; however, the sale of homes for $1 million just 2 blocks away from people living check-to-check is not a sustainable model. Don't get me wrong: we need that kind of diversity. That's the reason we moved to downtown Raleigh. My fear is that those people living check-to-check will soon be pushed further and further away, forcing them to make tougher choices with respect to commute, transportation, childcare, etc. -- choices that result in a cycle that makes it harder to get out of.  One of our calling cards for so long has been quality of life + affordability. We will soon lose both if we're not careful."
🎟️ Don't forget to get your tickets for our upcoming events! Converging Stories: The First Love, from Raleigh Convergence x Transfer Company (Feb. 10) [tickets] + Making Raleigh: The Local Cocktail, from Raleigh Convergence x Watts & Ward (March 5) [tickets]
--Beth LittleJohn of Players’ Retreat, quoted in Garden & Gun's Ultimate Grits guide alongside other Raleigh area grits experts. 


The two biggest items on today's Raleigh City Council's agenda gives a hint to the future:

🔮 The Convention Hotel and Downtown Development project: The two surface lots across from the Duke Energy Center at the end of Fayetteville Street will be a convention center HQ hotel and a mixed-use office and retail development. The Requests for Interest (RFIs) are opening on the 27th. 

What type of development they're seeking, which is zoned up to 40 stories:
  • Hotel: 500+ rooms with comparable meeting space, a national brand that's "upper upscale" and full service.
  • Office/Retail mixed use development: Class A office tower with major anchor tenant, ground-level retail, residential and "other creative ideas."
  • Parking: Would be built under both sites and under Fayetteville Street
🔮 Also on the agenda, Red Hat Amphitheater is seeking a budget transfer for a stage replacement [details] + an update to its bathrooms [details]

✈️ RDU has big plans for expansion, but they come with a big price tag. [read more]

💌 Another Raleigh-made newsletter to get in your inbox: The Pollinatr is a newsletter for strategists who love data and want to get smart about trends. Michelle Blaser is the brains behind The Pollinatr and a local Raleighite. You might find her at Gallo Pelon, Player's Retreat or walking her beagle on Glenwood.
 
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