Charlotte, North Carolina:
Ensuring long-term development viability along Independence Boulevard
The City of Charlotte seeks to identify the initial implementation steps to re-energize, reposition and ensure long-term viability of development along Independence Boulevard, historically one of Charlotte’s major commercial corridors.
As the corridor transforms from a major arterial to a limited access expressway with plans for a proposed transit line, Independence Boulevard is experiencing significant deterioration and abandonment of its commercial buildings. Neighborhoods along the corridor are also being negatively impacted. In response, the City of Charlotte developed the Independence Boulevard Area Plan which seeks to provide:
- A clear vision and predictable future for Independence Boulevard, which is critical to reinvestment along the corridor;
- Strategies that focus on encouraging land uses that respond to the roadway’s future condition; and
- Protection and enhancement of the existing neighborhoods.
The overall concept for the Independence Boulevard Area Plan is to re-orient development away from Independence Boulevard and toward an internal street network and concentrate development intensity at nodes, which are the focus of neighborhoods linked together by green connections – greenways, parks, and trails. This form of development will create a more walkable development pattern that can be maintained over time and that will help to maintain and enhance the existing neighborhoods.
Although the plan identifies a few specific areas to catalyze the rest of the corridor’s redevelopment, where do we begin? What are the initial implementation steps to re-energize, reposition and ensure long-term viability of development along Independence Boulevard? What tools are needed to help achieve the plan vision?