Carolina Square to Revitalize Downtown Chapel Hill

Exciting developments are underway in Chapel Hill! A major revitalization effort is underway for downtown Chapel Hill at Franklin Street, which will transform a decades-old strip mall into a lively urban landmark where residents can meet, work, and play: Carolina Square. The $123 million redevelopment project, located about a block from UNC-Chapel Hill, replaces former University Square at 123 West Franklin Street.

Carolina Square will be the first of its kind in downtown Chapel Hill, and will include retail, office, and residential space; abundant parking; a green space for performances and entertainment; and an arts venue called “The Core@Carolina Square.” UNC-Chapel Hill, the Town of Chapel Hill, and developers officially broke ground at Carolina Square on October 22, 2015. The complex is slated to open in August 2017.




Carolina Square is an equal-partner joint venture between Cousins Properties, who will oversee the development, construction, and property management, and Northwood Ravin, who will oversee commercial leasing. “We’re excited to bring Northwood Ravin’s signature style that marries quality and convenience in an urban setting to Chapel Hill,” said David Ravin, President. “There’s no better way to make an impact on Chapel Hill than by developing something dynamic on Franklin Street.”

UNC-Chapel Hill has committed to more than 50 percent of the complex’s office space, allowing groups from the Carolina Population Center and the Gillings School of Public Health to work together on research projects. Cousins Properties is negotiating with several local and national tenants.




The Core@Carolina Square will include a 4,000-square-foot black box theater, a 3,000 square-foot rehearsal studio, and an arts innovation lab. The space will also serve as a home for the Arts@The Core initiative,  a project that brings together academics and the arts. Drawings show The Core@Carolina Square on the ground floor of one of the three Carolina Square buildings, facing the interior of the site and an open green space. According to UNC Chancellor Carol Folt, the venue will bring world-class artists, scientists, researchers, students, and community members together in a unique economic and cultural magnet for the town. “It’s going to be a place that houses researchers, and it’s also going to have artists,” she said. “It’s going to be a place where they have experiments, trying new ideas. It’s going to be a place where the community can experience that excitement that happens when you bring discovery and creativity together.”




For more information on the vibrant community and neighborhoods you’ll find in Chapel Hill, contact Broker Jodi Bakst or Paul Barrett: 919.928.5131, [email protected], or [email protected]. Visit them online at