North Carolina is a state in the southeastern region of the United States. The state borders South Carolina and Georgia to the south, Tennessee to the west, Virginia to the north, and the Atlantic Ocean to the east. North Carolina is the 28th most extensive and the 9th most populous of the U.S. states. The state is divided into 100 counties. The capital is Raleigh. The most populous municipality is Charlotte, which is the second largest banking center in the United States after New York City. The state has a wide range of elevations, from sea level on the coast to 6,684 feet (2,037 m) at Mount Mitchell, the highest point in North America east of the Mississippi River. The climate of the coastal plains is strongly influenced by the Atlantic Ocean. Most of the state falls in the humid subtropical climate zone. More than 300 miles (500 km) from the coast, the western, mountainous part of the state has a subtropical highland climate.
Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill collectively form what is known as the Triangle in North Carolina. The area is home to Raleigh, the state capital, several major universities and their widely popular NCAA sports teams, Research Triangle Park, multiple state parks, and hundreds of attractions and entertainment options; all within 30-45 minutes of one another. RDU International Airport is also one of the two major airports in the Carolinas and is conveniently located in-between all three cities, roughly 10 miles west of Raleigh and 10 miles east of Chapel Hill and Durham.
Located 30 minutes northwest of Raleigh off of I-40, Durham is a city of over 218,000 residents that boasts a large number of attractions, city, county and state parks and several festivals that occur annually. With Duke University and the local minor-league baseball team, the Durham Bulls, in the city, there is a large focus on sports and recreation. Catch a football or basketball game at Duke, baseball game at Durham Bulls Athletic Park, or enjoy a museum or two within the culturally rich city.With Falls Lake State Park to the north, the American Tobacco Trail running through town, Lake Jordan State Recreation Area to the southeast, and many other city and county parks facilities within the area, Durham offers a good amount of outdoor recreation opportunities.
The college town of Chapel Hill and its immediate neighbor, Carrboro comprise the quaint area housing the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and its Tar Heels sports teams. The immaculately well kept area is one of the more beautiful and charming small towns within North Carolina. With its history as the oldest public university in the country, active student body, and intensely passionate residents, the Chapel Hill area lives and breaths UNC-Chapel Hill. Have a lazy stroll through the campus, enjoy the North Carolina Botanical Gardens, visit the Morehead Planetarium, attend a Tar Heel sporting event, or catch a show at The Cat's Cradle. Either way you look at it, Chapel Hill exudes small town charm and acts as a nearby escape from the city-life of Raleigh or Durham.Chapel Hill is located just to the south of I-40, only 8 miles south of Durham and 20 miles west of Raleigh.
Being the capital of North Carolina, Raleigh naturally is the tourist hub of the Triangle. As a city of nearly 400,000 there's not much that is absent from Raleigh. All major statewide museums call Raleigh home such as the North Carolina Museums of Art, History, and Natural Sciences. As home to five universities and an ever-growing downtown business district, Raleigh is a great place to find entertainment and a bustling nightlife. If bar-hopping downtown isn't what you're into, there are numerous outdoor recreational opportunities existing within the many city, county, and state parks nearby. Visit Umstead State Park or Lake Jordan State Recreational Area for amazing hiking, boating, fishing, and mountain biking opportunities or city parks for disc golf or a lazy day of picnicking in lush green grass.Raleigh is located on I-40, roughly two and a half hours northeast of Charlotte and two hours northwest of Wilmington.
The Research Triangle Park's creation remains one of the most transformational public-private partnerships in national history.
In the 1950s, North Carolina was home to a deteriorating economic base rooted in tobacco, furniture manufacturing, small-scale farming and textiles, and had the second-lowest per capita income in the nation. The state’s economic future was uncertain.
But in 1959, a group of the state’s brightest political, business and academic leaders created a new future for North Carolina. Together, they worked to create a more sustainable economic base that would carry North Carolina into the 21st century. Drawing upon the strengths and synergies between North Carolina’s academic, government and industry base they created RTP as a place to attract and grow research and development (R&D) operations.
The vision was to provide a ready physical infrastructure that would attract research oriented companies. The advantage of locating in RTP would be that companies could employ the highly-educated local work force and be proximate to the research being conducted by the state’s research universities.
Since it was established, the Park has witnessed a steady and stable increase in the number of companies and employees. The first official company in the Park was the Research Triangle Institute (today known as RTI International), established by the same leaders who created RTP as a focal point of the power and potential of the research emanating from our region’s three research universities. Coupled with the founding of the Chemstrand campus in 1960, RTP began its transformation into a global center for scientific research and enterprise.
Today, there are more than 170 companies in RTP. The original parcel of land that made up RTP in 1959 consisted of 4,400 acres. Through the years, the Foundation acquired more land, surpassing 5,500 acres by 1979 and totaling nearly 7,000 acres presently. In the same period, the Park’s developed space has increased from only 200,000 square feet in 1960 to more than 22.5 million square feet currently. More than 39,000 full-time equivalent employees work in RTP with an estimated 10,000 contract workers.
Additionally, RTP has encouraged the creation of several technology parks across the state, including Centennial Campus, Gateway University Research Park, the Charlotte Research Institute, and the Piedmont Triad Research Park.
Check out this great video
- Video upload information from YouTube. visitRaleigh. The RTP. The Daily Conversation. NC Government.