Downtown Durham, NC used to be the home to big tobacco but that is now an historical fact, not a part of the contemporary city. It's interesting to me how, as part of revitalizing downtown Durham over the past few decades, they have preserved many of the tobacco factories and warehouses but use them in new ways.
The American Tobacco Campus has become an entertainment area as well as a place for businesses, restaurants, and the home of the new Durham Bulls athletic center. The part that I'm featuring here has water features running throughout it. I used another shot of the old train which sits in the middle of part of the water feature (below) for another post but never got around to posting other shots.
I live in Raleigh but the company I work for is in Durham and their offices are located in the historical warehouse district. As a matter of fact, part of their offices are in a restored tobacco warehouse.
I usually work from my home office but I was in Durham today. However, ironically I don't have any shots of the part of my employer's office that was a tobacco warehouse. All of these shots were taken when Bill and I went to Duke Gardens on labor day, and after that visited the American Tobacco Campus. My employer's offices are on the other part of the district 5 or 6 blocks away and we didn't go there. The lighting wasn't great for many of the water shots, but this gives an idea of the area.It really is pretty staggering the sheer amount of water. I'm not doing it justice here but I've included some representative shots. I am no lover of tobacco having fought an addiction to cigarettes a long time before I stopped smoking in 2001. However, there is no denying that historically tobacco was an important part of North Carolina.
I like to see cities use historical buildings, even if they were something as mundane as tobacco warehouses, in creative ways.
I don't like to see cities all start to look alike. There are certainly parts of the area where I live that I've seen that happen. When regional areas start to lose their individual character they lose their charm for me.I have to admit that I never in a million years would have thought of preserving tobacco warehouses and factories as something desirable. However, once they started moving along with the reuse of this part of Durham's past, I thought it was pretty inspired what they did.