Newsletter editor Rich Haag says thanks and bye

Newsletter editor Rich Haag says thanks and bye

By Rich Haag. This newsletter marks my end of 13 years spent helping University City Partners share our community’s good news and big dreams. Like many of you, I invested my own heart and treasure in University City. I leave this post feeling satisfied with my contributions, excited about University City’s future and grateful for the tireless work done on our behalf by University City Partners’ staff and scores of volunteer board members. Reaping the rewards I’ve seen many ups and downs here since arriving in northeast Charlotte in 1979, about the time that IBM opened near UNC Charlotte and helped birth our community. I’ve written thousands of articles about University City and its people over the years since, first for The Charlotte Observer and University City Magazine, which I helped launch; and since 2009 for University City Partners. I feel honored to have been given that opportunity. I feel lucky to have spent so many years benefiting from my family’s life here. Then and now My wife, Karen, and I raised our sons here and still live in the home we built near UNC Charlotte in 1987. Our neighbors these days include two other couples from that “pioneer” time plus more recent additions from across America and around the world. In those early years, Karen and I often walked the boardwalk at University Place with our little boys. Now we walk with our little grandsons who live in the lakeside condos. We attend church near University Research Park. We walk daily at Reedy Creek Park. We waited, seemingly forever, for the coming of the LYNX Blue Line Extension...
Reedy Creek Nature Preserve expansion touches 3 schools

Reedy Creek Nature Preserve expansion touches 3 schools

Two public schools and the CPCC Cato Campus have gained important access to a great learning resource, thanks to Mecklenburg County’s recent purchase of 100 acres for the planned Reedy Creek Greenway. The new addition to Reedy Creek Nature Preserve adjoins Northeast Middle School, Grier Academy and the Cato Campus. With more than 1,000 acres and a staffed nature center, the nature preserve should eventually help students get first-hand knowledge of our local environment and wildlife. New addition creates 1,200-acre block of public land The new property creates a solid block of Charlotte and Mecklenburg land totaling nearly 1,200 acres bordered by East WT Harris Blvd, Plaza Road Extension and Grier Road. Reedy Creek Park and adjoining Reedy Creek Nature Preserve hold about 1,050 acres; the three schools comprise about 100 acres; and a city fire station and other city-owned land total about 30 acres more. Mecklenburg County bought the new addition in early May for about $2 million. The seller, Cox Media Group, paid nearly $2.3 million for the same land about 17 months earlier, when it bought the property from WSOC Television. Besides adding important land to the nature preserve, the new land will provide a path for the first phase of Reedy Creek Greenway, between Grier Road and Plaza Road Extension. The Charlotte Ledger Business Newsletter’s Tony Mecia recently told WFAE that the county has no other plans for developing the new addition to the nature preserve, other than perhaps to add a few picnic tables. Nature Center provides classrooms, displays, programs The Reedy Creek Nature Center has been closed throughout the pandemic. The facility has small...
Start your Saturdays at University City Farmers Market

Start your Saturdays at University City Farmers Market

University City Farmers Market is off to a great start. Online publication Charlotte Five recently declared our market one of its “Five Things To Do” on Saturdays, and with good reason. The lakeside market at the Shoppes at University Place offers fresh regional produce, live entertainment and cooking demonstrations, children’s programs, local crafts and, new this spring, an outdoor cafe featuring Manolo’s Latin Bakery and Detour Coffeebar. The market is open 9 am-1 pm Saturdays through next fall at 8929 JM Keynes Drive, a short walk from the JW Clay LYNX light-rail station. Free parking is nearby and plentiful. MAP Visit the market website for details on vendors, safety measures and more. Follow the market on Facebook and Instagram @univcitymkt for the latest news on vendors, products and special events. Sign up for weekly boxes of fresh produce from area farms, assembled by the Farm at Dover Vineyards...
Check out this light show, courtesy of Duke Energy

Check out this light show, courtesy of Duke Energy

North Tryon Street near the University City Walmart just got a colorful new look between dusk and dawn. At the request of University City Partners, Duke Energy recently added multicolored illumination to its large substation just south of Shopping Center Drive. “They look best the later and darker into the evening it gets!” said Catherine Grella, who represents public engagement for Duke Energy’s Transmission division. Color-changing LED lights are programmed to illuminate the North Tryon Street substation nightly from dusk to dawn. The lights currently go on about 5:30 p.m. The best spot for seeing the lights is on the sidewalk directly in front of the substation, Grella says. LYNX riders will also get a great view, especially as the north-bound trains crest the University City Boulevard bridge. Display can be customized The new light display should not get boring. Engineers can program the lights to create custom colors for specific events, such as green for Charlotte 49ers home games and pink for breast cancer awareness, Grella says. University City Partners is working with Duke Energy to create special lighting schemes to mark major holidays and events. Darlene Heater, executive director of University City Partners, said University City is fortunate to have Duke Energy as a major employer. “Thanks to Duke Energy for gifting us this illuminated art for our community to enjoy during the evening hours,” she...

Commercial Real Estate Roundup – August 2020

August 2020 report on commercial real estate in University City – Charlotte Centene buys additional 51.8 acres in University Research Park Electrolux has sold Centene 51.8 acres fronting Claude Freeman Drive and David Taylor Drive Centene now owns 132 acres in research park for future East Coast headquarters First phase to include 770,000 SF office building near Gov. Hunt Road MORE   Three developers seeking rezonings for 149 acres owned by IBM 700-plus apartments, townhomes near University City Blvd and I-85. MORE 157 townhomes along IBM Drive, Neal Road. MORE 300 apartments on IBM Drive at West WT Harris Blvd. MORE   Purchase makes Centene the No. 4 biggest landowner in Research Park No. 1 is IBM, with 319 acres of undeveloped land, mostly near I-85 Other top landowners: Accesso Partners, Wells Fargo, Duke Energy, TIAA Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools owns 197 acres in 4-school Governors Village   Advance grading work starts soon for future I-85 North Bridge Bridge will link Research Park and University Place near Clay Blvd LYNX station Advance grading work will take place first along David Taylor Drive Construction set to start in 2021; final right-of-way and utility work are next steps MORE   Informal survey finds interest in farmers market and small businesses UCP asked residents this spring to suggest improvements they want here Farmers market, support for small businesses and greenways ranked high About 200 people – most between ages 35 and 64 – took the survey MORE   Topgolf plans to open University City facility in late 2020 Popular venue recently reopened its first CLT site with new health measures Topgolf building its 2nd...
Commercial Real Estate Roundup – July 2020

Commercial Real Estate Roundup – July 2020

July 2020 report on commercial real estate in University City – Charlotte Centene to break ground on URP campus in August First buildings will be 770,000 SF main building and parking garage, Charlotte Observer reports Centene completed purchase on July 10 of 80.1 acres along Gov Hunt Road for $10 million Read full July 1 news release about Centene’s East Coast HQ plans MORE Innovation Park owners unveil plan to take massive complex to the next level Accesso Partners seeks rezoning for mixed-use development around existing facility Proposal would add multifamily, retail, hotel and offices, says Business Journal Rezoning will be “dense,” with modern, higher-end product, says Accesso Partners’ CIO MORE Shorenstein seeks OK for offices, parking near its 6800 Solectron Dr building Rezoning would allow 50,000 sf of new development and parking, Business Journal reports Shorenstein bought 6800 Solectron flex building in 2019, announced plans for offices Rezoning is for 12.4 acres between Mallard Creek Road and 6800 Solectron property MORE UCP to co-host interactive discussion about small-business grants on July 22 Online event takes place 3 pm July 22 on University City Partners Facebook Page Qualifying businesses will receive grants of either $10,000 or $25,000 Key speaker will be Holly Eskridge, city’s asst. economic development director MORE Podcast features Darlene Heater discussing “Driving Business in University City” Heater talks with Jeffrey Jones of Belk College of Business on Charlotte Business Buzz Topics include University City’s rapid growth, the challenges of the pandemic and what lies ahead MORE University City leads Charlotte’s multifamily housing boom, says CoStar Recent report says over 2,000 units are under construction CoStar says...