NC Commissioner Troxler: Plans Announced for Year-Round Food Venue, Modernized Infrastructure at the State Fairgrounds

RALEIGH – Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler on Monday announced plans to add a year-round food venue at the State Fairgrounds that will be able to offer new food options for the growing West Raleigh area. 

Plans are still in the development stage and have not been finalized, but the Midway Event Center is projected to be a two-tiered building offering a multi-vendor destination food hall for year-round food options, indoor and patio seating options year-round, fair food options during the Fair and multiple event spaces that would be suitable for meetings and smaller events outside the State Fair. 

“We believe once the Midway Event Center is completed, it will become a hub for lunch options and after work gatherings, weekend brunch dates and quick business meetings,” Troxler said. “It will become a neighborhood meeting spot and a place where friends can enjoy time together before heading out to another event in the area.”

In addition to the planned new building, Troxler also announced a 3-to 4-year fairgrounds improvement project that will focus on refreshing the Flower and Garden area to integrate it with Heritage Circle and upgrading infrastructure throughout the grounds. 

“We are embarking on a modernization of the fairgrounds, ensuring it’s long-term ability to meet the needs of fairgoers and fairgrounds visitors and renters,” Troxler said. “The Midway Event Center will bring life to the Fairgrounds 365 days a year and will keep it relevant to the citizens of our state as the neighborhood around us grows into a thriving entertainment district.”  

The State Fair hosts around 350 events annually, renting out the grounds and buildings as part of its business model. Receipts from rentals and revenue from the State Fair and Got to Be NC Festival fund staffing, repairs and renovations, infrastructure upgrades and construction of new facilities.

The Midway Event Center will replace the 70-year old Lunch Stand Building. It has been part of the Fairgrounds Master Plan that was developed in 2009.

NC Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler and members of State Fair Infrastructure Improvements Team announce big changes coming to the Fairgrounds, starting with the new Midway Event Center replacing the Lunch Stand Building. Image credit Mike Davis/SFN