CATS is considering redeveloping the Charlotte Transportation Center in uptown

CATS has received a proposal to redevelop the uptown Charlotte Transportation Center on Trade Street.
CATS has received a proposal to redevelop the uptown Charlotte Transportation Center on Trade Street. Observer file photo

The Charlotte Area Transit System has received an unsolicited proposal to redevelop the Charlotte Transportation Center, setting the stage to potentially reshape another prominent piece of land in uptown.

In a notice CATS published on a city website, the transportation authority did not provide details of the proposal, or who submitted it, other than to state that it was for a mixed-use development. It also was not immediately known what the time-frame for the potential project would be.

In an emailed response to the Observer, Philip Charneskie, CATS senior procurement officer, said a competitive proposal process has begun for the site. In the statement, he said the agency will not provide more information about the proposal while the process is ongoing.

In the notice, CATS said it is accepting proposals until July 15 for the site that is the major hub for city buses.

CATS said its intent is to maintain access to the bus facility, light rail and streetcar in any proposed development. It asked in the notice that proposals include a plan for an interim location for the continued operation of the bus service during construction.

The 2.6-acre site behind the Spectrum Center was valued at around $23 million in the latest revaluation this year.

It would be another major project at a transit station for the city, after construction on the planned Gateway Station started last year.

When completed, Gateway Station would restart passenger rail service to uptown. The first phase of that project is estimated to cost between $70 million and $80 million. But the city still needs to find a private developer to construct the station building.

The transportation center is expected to close in August 2020 for the Republican National Convention at Spectrum Arena. It closed to the public in 2012 for the Democratic convention, when it was used for delegate buses. The center was temporarily moved to a site off Mint Street.

Staff writer Jim Morrill contributed.