ricky_davis_fan_21

Ideas for Creating Culture, Temporary and Permanent, in Charlotte

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Although most minds probably go straight to the arts when they think of the word "culture", another culture-promoting idea is to go all-in on higher education.  Throughout history, it seems as if great cultures (i.e. Greece) and cultural movements (i.e. the Renaissance) have centered around advancements in knowledge.  Furthermore, the cities that are considered the pinnacles of culture in America-Boston, New York, DC, San Fransicsco-are often those that have extremely well-regarded institutions of higher education.  Therefore, it is not too far fetched to think that the more we promote higher education in the city, the more cultured we will become.  More specifically, Charlotte should actively seek for ways to become a bastion of post baccalaureate and STEM education. 

 

One idea I had was for the city to help fund a large expansion of engineering, science, and business programs at UNCC to include programs for energy engineering, environmental engineering, chemical engineering, biomedical engineering, nuclear physics, theoretical physics, biochemistry, economics, EMBA, and the like.  While I do not know the legalities of the city providing funding to a state supported institution, I can not imagine that it could be illegal given that the city can provide millions in direct subsidies to sports teams and amateur sports complexes.  I would much rather the city hand over 30+ million dollars to UNCC to double the size of their STEM and business departments than I would to see that same money going to help Good Sports build a field house.

 

Another idea is a comprehensive health sciences university (a la Western University of Health Sciences) supported by a combination of the city and all regional colleges/universities (except UNCC since the administration so obviously wants no part of anything that is not the brain child of Chapel Hill).  A comprehensive health sciences university could house the big programs such as medical, dental, pharmacy, physicians assistant, and nursing/nurse practitioner schools as well as the less common schools such as vet med, podiatry, optometry, and other various science/research programs.  Once again, I would much rather see public funding going to fund a major higher education initiative than some other dubious "economic" development project.

 

Finally, while I do not know if these are worthy of direct subsidies like the programs above, I still think the city/county should work with local non-profits and universities to build a reputable law school(s) under the auspices of Davidson, Queens, and/or UNCC.  Also, we should strive to have a school of journalism (most likely at Queens considering its current school of communication and ties to the Knight Foundation) and a large school of art, film, and design.

 

Expansions of culture and expansions of knowledge often go hand-in-hand.  Charlotte does a good job of attracting educated people, but much of that human capital is imported to Charlotte and not produced in Charlotte.  We need to support higher education and the institutions that provide it.  The more we get behind major educational initiatives, I think the more cultured our city will necessarily become.

 

Turn the Eastland Mall plot into a university campus: maybe the (Insert Wealthy Donor's Name Here) Institute of Technology.  A privately funded engineering and business school with research labs, undergraduate and graduate programs.  Would revitalize the East Side and could be connected to uptown via Trolley.   

 

Way better idea than a stupid movie studio.  

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Turn the Eastland Mall plot into a university campus: maybe the (Insert Wealthy Donor's Name Here) Institute of Technology.  A privately funded engineering and business school with research labs, undergraduate and graduate programs.  Would revitalize the East Side and could be connected to uptown via Trolley.   

 

Way better idea than a stupid movie studio.  

 

 

The amount of capital necessary to create any sort of legitimate technology and research institute from the ground up, would be astronomical.  The endowments of most major tech universities in the US are in the upwards of a billion + dollars.  Most likely we just end up with a Devry over on the Eastland Mall site.

 

I'm not against funding education, but funding a legitimate research institution would bankrupt the city.  The institutions we currently have already have a difficult time getting funding from the state as is.  Out of curiosity, are there any recent examples of something like this occurring?   Where a city just started it's own successful university?  I'm actually curious.

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Saw on Facebook a new word I Really like. "CLTure"

Totally could be our "I <3 NY"

Someone creative should really take that word far.

 

CLTure started showing up a few years ago (3-4?) I don't know squat about the group, but they seem to put on quite a few events. It's certainly more home-grown and organic than that horrible CRVA slogan. 

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Turn the Eastland Mall plot into a university campus: maybe the (Insert Wealthy Donor's Name Here) Institute of Technology.  A privately funded engineering and business school with research labs, undergraduate and graduate programs.  Would revitalize the East Side and could be connected to uptown via Trolley.   

 

Way better idea than a stupid movie studio.  

I was thinking Eastland as well , but for a full scale Health Sciences University-not just medical school.  It could be an economic boon to Charlotte but also it could provide healthcare services to an underserved area.

 

The amount of capital necessary to create any sort of legitimate technology and research institute from the ground up, would be astronomical.  The endowments of most major tech universities in the US are in the upwards of a billion + dollars.  Most likely we just end up with a Devry over on the Eastland Mall site.

 

I'm not against funding education, but funding a legitimate research institution would bankrupt the city.  The institutions we currently have already have a difficult time getting funding from the state as is.  Out of curiosity, are there any recent examples of something like this occurring?   Where a city just started it's own successful university?  I'm actually curious.

While not started by a city per se, the Western University of Health Sciences was started by a group interested in bringing a College of Osteopathic medicine to the West Coast.  It was founded in 1977 (ironically, on an abandoned mall property like Eastland)  with only one school-the Medical School.

 

In less than 40 years, it has grown to a full health sciences university to include Schools of Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Veterinary Medicine, Optometry, Podiatry, Nursing, Physicians Assistant studies, and others.  It started as a vision-no funding, just a vision-and now has 4000 students, 1000 faculty, and contributes an estimated 500 million a year to the local economy of Pomona, California.  It regularly gets research funding from institutes such as the NIH, and has notable healthcare organizations, non-profits, and labs located on site. 

 

Something like Western U. at Eastland would forever change the fortunes of that side of town.  Obviously it would take more than city funding; it would require buy-in from Hospitals such as Novant Presbyterian and Caromont in Gastonia as well as private donors, and probably some level of support from the local colleges (sans UNCC).  But it can be done.  Western University is a testament to that, and a relatively new one.  If the city can throw money at a movie studio and amateur sports complexes, surely it could help start up a community health sciences university.

 

I will add that NC has no schools of optometry or podiatry, so a hypothetical school at Eastland like I have outlined could be the first to host such schools.

 

BTW...here are some quick reads on Western U.

 

http://jprod.westernu.edu/news/nr_detail.jsp?id=21928

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_University_of_Health_Sciences

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^^^ Wow, that's really neat.  I had no idea.  Good information cltbwimob.  A school of optometry and podiatry sounds like a niche that certainly needs to be filled in NC.

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I really enjoy reading this thread and try to look back at Charlotte over the past 25 years from a cultural standpoint.  When I was first here in 1989, there really wasn't much here - culturally - except NASCAR.  Not having much exposure to Charlotte, I had no set expectation either.  Now, we have NBA, NFL, a spectacular minor league baseball team, National Whitewater Center, a MUCH better Carowinds, two lakes with a lot of possibilities there and NASCAR (had to keep that going).  Not to mention, the areas like NoDa, Plaza-Midwood, Elizabeth have thrived with their eclectic styles, and we are seeing a bustling new South End.  Breweries and food trucks - good grief - what options!  The overall arts scene has expanded too with so much more to see and do from plays and musicals.  The Symphony at South Park is a constant draw over the summer.  Ring cities/towns like Waxhaw, Matthews, Belmont, Mooresville and Concord add to that culture with the small downtowns that add so much character to the region as a whole.  I guess my rah rah session is leading up to me saying that culture is here.  It all depends on how much you want to be a part of it!  I'm not saying that we don't need more!  I am open for even more cultural options (arts/sports/recreation, etc.).  Are we ever going to have amenities like NYC, Philly, DC or even places like Charleston or Savannah - probably not.  But we can continue to be a part of what an incredible wave that is starting to pick up steam.  Geez, anyone at the Charlotte Chamber have a job for me?

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I would really love to see Charlotte develop a festival that could grow to rival SXSW or Spoleto in popularity. I'm not entirely sure what the focus of it should or could be, but having a festival that ranks on a national scale would help foster culture and a sense of identity. It would take time, but is certainly doable.

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I would really love to see Charlotte develop a festival that could grow to rival SXSW or Spoleto in popularity. I'm not entirely sure what the focus of it should or could be, but having a festival that ranks on a national scale would help foster culture and a sense of identity. It would take time, but is certainly doable.

best opportunity for that might be TuckFest at the White Water Center. 

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best opportunity for that might be TuckFest at the White Water Center. 

 

 

Man do I ever agree with this.  TuckFest even in its 3rd year really seemed like something that I believe can be special...very soon.  Hell it was special this year even with the rain.  

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The schedule for this year looked awesome too. I love to see it spread regionally. We could do a whole week of outdoor sports and competiton, involve the BMX and Velodrome down in Rock Hill, and create some events/shows downtown.

Edited by rockhilljames

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This thread is bring people out of the WOODWORK.... first hauntedhead, now rockhilljames.  is it Throwback Thursday?

Edited by archiham04
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Sadly, summer festivals have kind of become a dime-a-dozen. I agree that a regular festival would be pretty cool though it would really need to be something completely unique. Amazingly Carolina Rebellion seems to be heading in the direction of a highly regarded regional-draw event. Yes, heavy metal/hard rock is a niche crowd these days, but apparently the attendance has gone up year after year (I heard they topped 60,000 this year) and the group putting it on has said it's saying in Charlotte. That's...something.

Being a huge fan of stand up comedy I would love to see something like Festival Supreme out in LA. Music and comedy all day? Yes please! This year The Kids in the Hall are headlining and if I miss the opportunity to see them live again I'll crush my own head.

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This is a great topic. Here's my 2 cents.  

 

Why did people start staying in Charlotte (aside from basic corporate moves)? It's because it's a great place to raise a family. COL is low, crime is relatively low, schools are (excluding some) above average. Family friendly is Charlotte's calling card and we should do things to embrace that.  

 

How about more parks with stuff for families? There are few kid-friendly things at Bearden aside from running in the field and playing in the waterfall. We need more than just ball fields in our parks. 

 

The state of funding for CMS is a joke - we should consider raising local taxes or create new incentives to raise the low performing schools (which are what is dragging down the system) as well as keep the top teachers at the better performing schools (since pay & red tape is pushing them out).  

 

We should embrace immigrant cultures that want to move here to make a better life for themselves and their families, which would add to our culture in the truest sense of the word (I will stay off of the political soap box on this issue). 

 

For all the DINKS and youngins out there, this probably doesn't sound very appetizing. But, there is no reason that we can't have a great place to live for people without kids, and have a world class city in terms of raising a family. One day you might decide to have kids of your own, and then your perceptions on what is important will probably change, as did mine. 

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Sadly, summer festivals have kind of become a dime-a-dozen. I agree that a regular festival would be pretty cool though it would really need to be something completely unique. Amazingly Carolina Rebellion seems to be heading in the direction of a highly regarded regional-draw event. Yes, heavy metal/hard rock is a niche crowd these days, but apparently the attendance has gone up year after year (I heard they topped 60,000 this year) and the group putting it on has said it's saying in Charlotte. That's...something.

Being a huge fan of stand up comedy I would love to see something like Festival Supreme out in LA. Music and comedy all day? Yes please! This year The Kids in the Hall are headlining and if I miss the opportunity to see them live again I'll crush my own head.

 

When rockhilljames (welcome back btw) brought up SXSW, my first thought was that we are trending in that direction with Carolina Rebellion as you mentioned. I've been a metal/hard rock fan most of my life (if you saw me today you would never guess that) and will say the lineups that they had this year versus the first year is like night and day. A lot of the acts are comparable to what you see in Europe at their big festivals (Rock Am Ring, Download, Roskilde,etc). Though they draw in the 100s of thousands in Europe, what Carolina Rebellion is doing is nothing to sniff at. Wouldn't be surprised to see it hit 100k in the next few years. I realize everyone's taste in music is different, but it's pretty cool to see this grow like it has. Would be good to see more of an expansion of it and become one of the biggest festivals in the US.

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But, there is no reason that we can't have a great place to live for people without kids, and have a world class city in terms of raising a family.

Yes, that is totally doable. See Minneapolis / St. Paul or Denver for examples to emulate.

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I think we'll see it continually grow too. Wouldn't be surprised to hear that they are finding it hard to squeeze it into the available space there at the rockcity campgrounds in a few more years if it continues to do well.

I really would love to see the area's local music scene have more of a presence too. It just doesn't seem like people around here are all that interested in the hometown bands. The problem, in my opinion, is that a lot of the stock here doesn't deliver a quality product. (Hope I didn't ruffle any feathers with that statement.) I've had the pleasure of catching a few bands that have interested me, but a majority of those I've heard are pretty forgettable. Chop Shop used to do an annual local music festival that lasted three days I believe. Not sure if they still do because the one time I went was a little underwhelming and i haven't checked it out since. Huh, I guess that makes me a part of the problem I just mentioned above.

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^ The Charlotte music sceene was actually among the strongest in the SE in the mid 80s. There was plenty of empty / cheap space for practice / performance and studios, a large (at the time) cluster of folks wanting to see live music and the Big I (now Bojangles Arena) and Carrowinds (and sometimes Memorial Stadium) were must-do tour stops for every big tour of the era (I grew up in Durham and had to get to Charlotte for shows more times than I can count, I even got my mom to drive me once). There were also strong connections to the huge Athens sceene (REM's main producer Don Dixon was a local and they recorded in the church that is about to be torn down at Central and Hawthorne), and local talent and facilities heavily contributed to the rise of the Chapel Hill sceen that sprouted up in the late 80s. In essesence Charlotte was one of the cradles of the southern-strain of alternative rock and this was not a small thing.

We still have plenty of music industry royalty here. Next time you are on Thomas Street pop into Borris and Natasha's and ask Hope about a Fetchen Bones reunion.

Edited by kermit

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I think we'll see it continually grow too. Wouldn't be surprised to hear that they are finding it hard to squeeze it into the available space there at the rockcity campgrounds in a few more years if it continues to do well.

I really would love to see the area's local music scene have more of a presence too. It just doesn't seem like people around here are all that interested in the hometown bands. The problem, in my opinion, is that a lot of the stock here doesn't deliver a quality product. (Hope I didn't ruffle any feathers with that statement.) I've had the pleasure of catching a few bands that have interested me, but a majority of those I've heard are pretty forgettable. Chop Shop used to do an annual local music festival that lasted three days I believe. Not sure if they still do because the one time I went was a little underwhelming and i haven't checked it out since. Huh, I guess that makes me a part of the problem I just mentioned above.

There are actually very solid jam band, indie, and electronica scenes here. The hip hop scene is making recent strides with events like Knockturnal, though its still arguably really underdeveloped for a city our size. Not sure about the metal scene even though I am a fan, but I think its mostly relegated to Tremont these days. We definitely do need more local showcase events. I miss the weekly outdoor shows at Salvador Deli. Indoor venue events are great but getting it outdoors exposes many more new people. 

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Not sure about the metal scene even though I am a fan, but I think its mostly relegated to Tremont these days. We definitely do need more local showcase events. I miss the weekly outdoor shows at Salvador Deli. Indoor venue events are great but getting it outdoors exposes many more new people.

Tremont, Chop Shop, Snug Harbor, Neighborhood theater, and quite a few small bars. My band was Tremont Family (we practiced there when we could only do nighttime practices), even then we only played there a few times a year, and our last year together we were doing shows 4-6 times a month. We even played an alley in Noda once, as part of an art crawl. It's still alive and well, and with more venues than when I was playing 8 years ago.

Edited by DEnd

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Charlotte leaders got a chance to tour Nashville. The question of city branding came up, as Nashville is known as the 'Music City'. What do you think Charlotte's brand would be? Something that would get Charlotte recognized on a national level?

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/business/article25480756.html

The Queen City should be our brand because it is our brand. Anything else would be cheesy. Atlanta has no special name. A-town is the only this that comes to mind.

Miami all I really hear is 305.Houston is the space city or something.

Minneapolis? I don't know. Orlando? Austin? LA? Boston? DC?

Philadelphia - City of Brotherly love

New Orleans - The Big Easy

Detroit - Motor City

Denver - The Mile High City

NYC - The Big Apple

Nashville - The Music City

Charlotte - The Queen City

Las Vegas - Sin City

We already have crowns on road signs, our CBD is named uptown and Im pretty sure the entire country knows that If not QC. Surely there is more we can do with our brand The Queen City. We have the foundation and the name has stuck on nationally.

Why manufacture something when we just need to further build on our image

I think the mural in the SouthEnd Living thread showing the gold district has what appears to be a queen riding the light rail. That pays subtle homage to our Queen City brand

Edited by AirNostrumMAD
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Charlotte leaders got a chance to tour Nashville. The question of city branding came up, as Nashville is known as the 'Music City'. What do you think Charlotte's brand would be? Something that would get Charlotte recognized on a national level?

 

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/business/article25480756.html

 

Umm, hello... :)

 

front_and_side.jpg

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Both the Branding article and a similar Buzz City uni photo were in the Observer this morning.... i had the same thought.

Edited by archiham04

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I REALLY REALLY REALLY love what Crescent is doing with the Goodyear building while the Tryon Place development is finalized and readied. I really hope to see something like this happen in the Gold District after Tryon Place starts and the Goodyear building is demo'd. They are doing the exact kind of thing I never thought possible in charlotte, when I moved to Brooklyn. 

IMG_9076.JPG

IMG_9075.JPG

OH SWEET, Update to this...

 Screen_Shot_2015-08-26_at_11.43.16_AM.th

Edited by ricky_davis_fan_21
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