Busy night for City Council: Streetcar second phase approved and Stonewall developer selected

Busy night for City Council: Streetcar second phase approved and Stonewall developer selected
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4th Monday of the month means city council fun! Tons of stuff was talked about but I will highlight two items that are very exciting.

The two items we will talk about are the Gold Line Phase II (aka the Streetcar) and the 277 surplus land at Stonewall and Caldwell (on the opposite side of Caldwell where Whole Foods will be).

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Gold Line Phase II (aka the Streetcar)

What is it?

The Gold Line Phase II extension is a proposed 2.5 mile extension to the Gold Line streetcar currently under construction (opening in July). City council approved to continue work on the streetcar even though the federal funds being hoped for are still in question. The $75 million promised by the feds is currently included in President Obama’s 2016 budget, but as we all know, Washington is finicky and that can change.

But at the end of the day, it was decided that it is best to continue to move forward because federal funds will soon be allocated on a competitive basis. It was argued that if we don’t continue work, the feds will not think the city is serious about the project and award funds elsewhere.

streetcar-phase-2 charlotte

Why do you care?

Because this is furthering our public transit progress and will add some flare along Trade Street. There are 11 new stops proposed with the extension. This will allow all of the uptown area to easily access city center while riding on streetcar trains.

charlotte-streetcar-phase-2-map

When can you use it?

2019 was the earliest timeline I’ve heard… stay tuned for more.

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Stonewall developer selected

This plot of land was in a fierce bidding war between four companies. In the end it came down to Bond Companies vs Northwood Ravin.

new-stonewall-development

Bond Companies upset Northwood Ravin’s bid of nearly $14.2 million, but technically their bid was entered past the deadline. Northwood Ravin gave a true, “from the heart” pitch about their commitment to Charlotte and love for the community, and to maintain the integrity of the bidding process. Bond Companies pitch was robotic, nervous and clearly scripted. As a bit of an outsider, I hope they invest in Charlotte, but this one was rightfully Northwood Ravin’s.

That said, the City Council left $1 million on the table, but maintained integrity and rewarded a company who has done a lot of good in Charlotte.

What is it?

This empty plot is across Caldwell from the future Whole Foods and just another development set to transform Stonewall in the coming years.

Why do you care?

400 apartments, 50,000 sqft of retail and office is nothing to turn a blind eye too. More people means more retail. More retail means people stop complaining there’s no retail. I am not sure Northwood Ravin has a final plan in mind, but they have done great work in the city.

When can you use it?

No dates for this one yet, sorry folks….but stay tuned!

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