Living Here Guide

Five developments that will reshape Charlotte

Iron workers construct a crane above Crescent Stonewall Station in uptown Charlotte in August 2016.
Iron workers construct a crane above Crescent Stonewall Station in uptown Charlotte in August 2016.

In case you haven’t noticed the cranes dotting our skyline, Charlotte is in the midst of a major building boom. New apartments. Office towers. Renovated mills and warehouses. From the city’s center to its fringes, construction crews are busy.

Amid this wave of new buildings, some stand out. Here are five new developments you should be acquainted with – they’ll be reshaping Charlotte over the coming years.

1. The River District

West of Charlotte Douglas International Airport, developers Lincoln Harris and Crescent Communities are planning to carve a brand-new mini-city from nearly 1,400 acres of mostly wooded land over the next 30 years. When it’s complete, the River District will include 2,300 single-family houses, 8 million square feet of office space, 2,550 multifamily residences, such as apartments and condominiums, 500,000 square feet of shops and restaurants, 1,000 hotel rooms and 550 acres of open space.

2. The former Charlotte Observer site

Where the Charlotte Observer once stood next to Bank of America Stadium, Lincoln Harris and Goldman Sachs are developing a new mixed-use district. One 33-story office tower for Bank of America is already under construction, opening in 2019. When it’s complete, the development is expected to total 5 million square feet of shops, restaurants, hotel, office and residential space, totally remaking a big corner of uptown.

Observer site rendering_photo courtesy of LS3P, Lincoln Harris
A rendering of the mixed-use site under development at the former Charlotte Observer, which is set to include a 33-story office tower for Bank of America. Ely Portillo Charlotte Observer

3. The Blue Line extension

Running from uptown to UNC Charlotte’s campus, the new Lynx Blue Line light rail extension is expected to open for passenger service by March 2018. This $1.2 billion project is attracting thousands of new apartments, along with shops and restaurants, to the route. The surge of new construction is reshaping neighborhoods along the whole line – look to South End if you want to see what’s coming.

The LYNX Blue Line Extension is a 9.3-mile alignment that extends north beyond the 7th Street Station in Uptown to UNC Charlotte’s main campus in University City. Davie Hinshaw

4. Camp North End

Just north of uptown, New York developer ATCO is overhauling a former industrial site on Statesville Avenue that at various times has been a Ford Model T factory, a missile plant, munitions dump and Rite Aid Distribution center. When it’s renovated and reborn, the 72-acre site will eventually include up to 1,500 apartments, 1.5 million square feet of office space, 280,000 square feet of retail and 65,000 square feet of light industrial space.

5. Crescent Stonewall Station

One of many mixed-use developments on the light rail line, Charlotte-based Crescent Communities’ Stonewall Station project is special because of what it’s bringing to Uptown: a full-sized grocery store. That’s something the city center has long lacked. Whole Foods will anchor this site, which opens in 2018 with 450 apartments above the store. Two hotels are planned as well.

Crescent Stonewall_1_2017 Observer photo
Progress on the Crescent Stonewall Station mixed-use development has been seen in 2017. Charlotte Observer

Ely Portillo covers development and commercial real estate for the Charlotte Observer.