The number of adults ages 20-34 living in uptown Charlotte grew by 219 percent between 2000 and 2010, center city boosters said Thursday, highlighting Generation Ys importance to the center citys future.
That was one finding of the latest State of the Center City report, which also found uptown has proportionately more residents with advanced degrees than nearby neighborhoods, needs more hotel rooms and is viewed as cleaner than two years ago.
The report, the third annual, was compiled by Charlotte Center City Partners, which was releasing it Thursday night before a group of brokers, economic developers and architects.
In an interview with the Observer on Thursday, Center City Partners president Michael Smith said one goal was to provide in-depth, original information that economic developers and real estate professionals could use to attract new businesses and retain existing ones.
I think weve competed really well, he said about the various comparisons the report makes between Charlotte and other cities. The report, he said, also shows we need to be intentional about the city, where we are and who we will attract.
The report, for example, suggests that Generation Y is becoming increasingly important to uptowns future. The center city had nearly 8,000 residents in that age group in 2010, up from about 2,200 in 2000, according to the report. It cites Pew research saying Generation Y adults prefer to live in center cities and urban areas.
• 88 percent of South Ends residential units have been constructed since 2000.
• 44 percent of uptown office workers have graduate degrees.
• Uptown has nearly 150 restaurants.
• Nearly 29,000 students are enrolled in higher education programs uptown.
I realized Charlotte is well on its way to meeting goals cities want to achieve to build education centers, energy hubs, attract Generation Y, said Tobe Holmes, the groups director of research.
Smith also said the report shows uptown offers relatively fewer hotel rooms compared to peer cities and needs more to support its convention center.
Smith said uptown needs more retail, particularly grocery stores and other services. His group recently hired a new director of economic development, Chris Hemans, to help recruit more retail and other businesses.
The report is available online at www.charlottecentercity.org.