PNC Plaza - looking back

The first time the PNC Plaza, then RBC Plaza, spire was lit up was ten years ago today.

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This building, though tall with a nice spire, is a disappointing piece of architecture as the tallest in the city.


I couldn’t agree more… three glass boxes stacked up with a metal pyramid on top. Not much imagination in the design. Then again, that is Raleigh… not much creativity, and mediocrity rules.

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I happen to like it. It may not be the prettiest structure in the city, but it could be worse. Much worse.

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PNC Plaza looks great.
The blue glass adds a modern presence and the tower’s central location is perfect between the other two downtown towers… which are also attractive with their interesting crowns and lots of offsets to provide many corner offices. They’re actually pretty creative (certainly not just a boxy shape).
As one of downtown Raleigh’s big 3 towers, PNC Plaza is the only with a residential component - the top floor, at level 33, is higher than any other occupied floor in the Triangle. It’s the tallest building in North Carolina outside of Charlotte. The lighting schemes change as well.
Some cool shots:


The absolutely worst part are the “lifeboat” terraces of the residences. Even worse is that the terraces don’t even have glass railings. It could have been much better detailed, and it’s obvious that it was done on the cheap.

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Tallest building between Philadelphia and Charlotte, in fact! Taller than any building in metro DC, Baltimore, etc.


Tallest between Philly and Charlotte? Wow, cool stat. The 2nd tallest is Baltimore’s Transamerica tower at 529’.
At least that is ‘real’ height, unlike the spire that puts PNC over the top. But it’s a fine tower.

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