Mecklenburg County Articles & Publications

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Data that show why Charlotte houses are so expensive - and scarce
   July 28, 2021
Ely Portillo

Buying a house in the Charlotte region has, in many ways, never been more challenging. Buyers face a dizzying array of obstacles: A historic supply crunch, skyrocketing prices and homes that sell faster and faster each month. 

The reasons are numerous. Housing supply never fully recovered after the 2008 economic crash and Great Recession drove homebuilders out of business; pandemic-...

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What impact will ‘disruptive innovations’ have on Charlotte’s transportation system?
   July 28, 2021
Ely Portillo

This story is part of the Transit Time newsletter, a partnership between the Urban Institute, the Charlotte Ledger and WFAE. Find out more and subscribe here. ...

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Building Charlotte's future (literally) with the construction industry
   July 26, 2021
Ely Portillo

Charlotte's growth rests, in the end, on the people who actually build our city: The construction industry. 

In this episode of the "Future Charlotte" podcast, general contractor Myers & Chapman CEO Marcus Rabun talks about the near-term challenges facing the industry such as covid-19, material and labor shortages. Rabun also discusses what might be an even bigger challenge to the...

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Five interesting ideas from Charlotte's draft Center City plan
   July 26, 2021
Ely Portillo

What will Charlotte's center city look like in two decades? A draft plan quietly unveiled last week after more than a year offers plenty of recommendations, mostly centered around the idea of a denser, more walkable, more equitable district, with more shops, parks and "signature" experiences to draw visitors. 

"All in 2040," the latest vision plan from Charlotte Center City Partners,...

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Beyond Honey – Get to Know some Native Bees
   July 21, 2021
Ruth Ann Grissom

Bee nirvana.  That’s how Gabriela Garrison described one of the fields we’ve converted to native warm season grasses and wildflowers.  Garrison, the Eastern Piedmont habitat conservation coordinator with N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, was in the Uwharries to conduct point counts targeting a list of priority bird species, but she kept getting...

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What's the future of Charlotte's tree canopy?
   July 15, 2021
Ely Portillo

Charlotte is known for its tree canopy, and if you've ever flown in here or driven on streets lined with towering oaks, you know why. 

But that canopy is under threat, shrinking by the equivalent of three football fields a day as development spreads and iconic trees planted decades ago age and die. And the trees we do have aren't equitably distributed, with many historically Black and...

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Three-day work weeks, vacant offices, shuttered storefronts. Is the upcoming Center City 2040 Vision Plan ready for that?
   July 15, 2021
Martin Zimmerman

The key to its success will be for residents and leaders to dare to dream big ,” Chris Beynon, Center City Vision Plan team leader, MIG consultants, Charlotte Business Journal, August 9,...

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Mapping displacement risk in Charlotte
   July 14, 2021

Providence Adu

As Charlotte grows rapidly, concerns about gentrification and displacement have become key issues for city government to address. Tracking gentrification and displacement can be challenging, as this process of neighborhood change is slow and takes many forms across space and time. However, when analyzed with viable data sources, areas that are potentially vulnerable to gentrification and...

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Charlotte annexations keep adding to city’s area
   July 7, 2021
Ely Portillo

When it comes to growth, Charlotte continues to add not just people, but land. 

Unlike many other large cities landlocked by either political borders, rivers or oceans, Charlotte is still surrounded by thousands of acres of unincorporated land that can...

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Charlotte’s transit future comes into focus, but big questions remain
   June 29, 2021
Ely Portillo

After the City Council narrowly approved the 2040 plan, Charlotte leaders are turning from questions of how we grow to another key part of the city’s future: how we move around. 

Ambitious transit plans that call for a new sales tax funding the Silver Line east-west light rail, the stalled Red Line to...

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