Goodnight Raleigh - a look at the art, architecture, history, and people of the city at night

Idlewild Ave: A Lesser Known Road

Idlewild Avenue connects to Edenton and is definitely an older part of the city. If you aren’t familiar with it, I should warn you that people may want to talk to you if you drive down it. It looks normal and average enough in the photos, but you may encounter someone waving their arms and walking towards your car. It isn’t a certainty, but has been frequent in my experience.

Many of the surrounding neigborhoods have undergone restoration or revitalization, and are no longer plagued by the drugs and violence that Idlewild has. Neighborhoods one block away are peaceful and calm. In fact, I have friends that live very near this road–It’s how I came to learn of it. Although I warned you of people approaching your car while driving down it, I must say that I didn’t feel in any danger while taking these photos. The recent Raleigh news about Idlewild was of a house that burnt down very recently. I can’t find any more than what was on the nbc17 web site, which wasn’t much at all. The only future for that giant house is to be torn down.

I imagine that just like many of Raleigh’s former run down neighborhoods, this one will also undergo a transformation. It was sort of obvious to me from a question posed to me by a random passerby on Idlewild: “Are you buying up property here?”. A second man asked me if I lived in the house across the street. Seems the word on the street is that property in this area is definitely in demand. There is still the issue of crack dealers and prostitutes, but I imagine that will rapidly decline as more of these houses are renovated, divided, and rented out to higher paying tenants.


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