Viewpoint

Hall of Fame collaboration again good for Charlotte

From Michael Smith, president and CEO of Charlotte Center City Partners, and Bob Morgan, president and CEO of Charlotte Chamber:

A differentiating characteristic for Charlotte is our culture of aspirational thinking, risk taking, and collaboration. This is a recipe that has produced positive results for our young, healthy and growing city. This is a courageous, business-minded model that works well for us. But as occurs in commerce, objectives are not always achieved. When this happens, all parties work together to assume their pro-rata responsibilities through a negotiated process for a sustainable, stable outcome. This is the exact process happening today in the negotiations between Bank of America, Wells Fargo, the City of Charlotte, the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority, and NASCAR regarding the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

The public-private partnership that made the NASCAR Hall of Fame possible is a case study in what makes our community great. These partnerships differentiate Charlotte from other business communities across the country. And this negotiated settlement is the result of five partners who care for our community and who are each stretching to attain a sustainable outcome for the NASCAR Hall of Fame. We are grateful for their collaboration and care for Charlotte. The success of the NASCAR Hall of Fame solidifies Charlotte as the home of NASCAR, a critically important driver of our local and regional economy.

The Hall of Fame has made and will continue to make substantial contributions to our community. Since the Hall of Fame opened, this complex has created remarkable opportunities for tourism and business development for our city. More than 90 percent of the conventions that choose Charlotte utilize the Hall of Fame complex. Last year, there were more than 300 events in the Hall of Fame, including the Chamber’s annual meeting and Charlotte Center City Partners’ Vision Awards. This complex has allowed the City to land major conventions such as the Democratic National Convention, the National Rifle Association annual meeting and the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority Boule.

Once again, Bank of America and Wells Fargo have been dedicated partners in building our city. The city, CRVA, NASCAR, Wells Fargo and Bank of America have negotiated a settlement that balances the interests of all parties. This is not the result envisioned at launch, but we are grateful to have such enlightened and community focused partners in the private sector.

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