What is the Triangle Area of North Carolina
When I get calls from people considering relocating to the Triangle I often hear “We are moving to Raleigh, will you help us find the best neighborhood?” Raleigh doesn’t usually mean Raleigh but one of the many towns in the Triangle. I want to answer the question, What is the Triangle and what towns and cities are included besides Raleigh?
Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill are towns in NC that form the points of a triangle. The area has been called the Triangle since the 60’s, named after Research Triangle Park.
What is Research Triangle Park (RTP)
RTP is a research and technology industrial park about 7 miles long and 2 miles long located in Durham County in about the middle of the Triangle. It isn’t a town or city, it’s an area in the middle of the Triangle set aside for research and development. Many big companies are located there. Driving through RTP you would never know there is anything there because the buildings are set back behind trees and it really does look like a park. It os very convenient to RDU airport.
Each of the 3 towns has a large university. Chapel Hill is the home of the University of North Carolina (UNC), Duke University is in Durham and NC State is located in Raleigh. The 3 cities are about 30 minutes apart. Duke University Hospital and UNC Health are huge, award winning hospital centers.
As time has gone on more towns and 5 counties are considered part of the Triangle even though they don’t fit in the triangle of Raleigh , Durham and Chapel Hill.
Pittsboro, and some homes with a Chapel Hill address are in Chatham County.
Clayton is in Johnston County
Population of the Triangle Area
The Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill area has a population of around 2 million people.
About Triangle counties: Wake, Durham, Chatham, and Orange
Wake County has several towns that share a school district, the Wake County Public Schools. Raleigh is in Wake County and is the state capital. There are around 425,0000 people living in Raleigh Metro Area.
Cary, Apex, Fuquay-Varina, Garner,Holly Springs, Knightdale, Morrisville, Rolesville,Wake Forest, Wendell and Zebulon are all towns in Wake County. You may have heard of Cary (not so little any more with 160,000 residents).
The University of North Carolina is in Chapel Hill. Take a drive down Franklin Street in Chapel Hill with me.
Durham is a large county with a population of around 250,000. The school system is Durham County Public Schools.
When I moved to the Triangle back in the early 80’s Durham was pretty much a tobacco town. Not too far out in Durham County farmers raised tobacco and dried it in tobacco barns. In the city of Durham, old factories processed the tobacco. It seemed everyone smoked in Durham back then.
Hip part of the Triangle now
The old tobacco warehouses have been converted into shops, offices and commercial space. New restaurants have opened and the music scene is lively. Lots of Triangle residents come to Durham now and many live and work there.
Chatham County was the forgotten county when I first moved to Chapel Hill. It wasn’t even mentioned in the local news or weather forecasts. Things have really changed over the years and now the area is called the next Cary. Development is moving into the area in a very big way.
The Chatham County Schools are good, especially in the area between Chapel Hill and Pittsboro. You can get a new home with a great price in Chatham. Pittsboro is the county seat.
Jordan Lake is a 14,000 acre lake with camping, fishing, boat ramps and kayak and canoe tours. You will see all kinds of wildlife around the lake. There are no homes built on the lake. It’s a reservoir for the area including Cary.
We have seasons and both very hot and very cold weather, at least for a day or two. Most of the year it’s wonderful even in the winter and summer. Sometimes people are surprised that we usually have a few days of snow every year especially when I say the secondary roads aren’t plowed. It doesn’t matter, everything closes and it melts in a day or so.
It’s big and varied
The Triangle is a huge area . It helps to have an idea what kind of commute you want to the office, school or the airport. If schools are a priority you will want to do some research. I can help with that and have more information on my Chapel Hill web site and Cary web site.
Come for a visit and find out what the Triangle has to offer. The Triangle area real estate market has a lot of options if you are thinking about moving.