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peaceloveunderstanding

The Southern Edge of Charlotte

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Welcome to the far southern edge of Charlotte, it can either be described as suburban paradise or suburban hell dependening upon your persuasion. I was visiting my parents today and decided to take a bicycle ride around. While I was riding about, I saw many other bikers and pedestrians. Anyways, here are the photos.

Note: The description for each photo is above the photo itself.

The long, winding entrance to a subdivision.

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A brandnew megamansion in a gated community.

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An entrance to a gated community

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Landscaping and nature along the road

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More of the wild. Remeber, There are some thousand people in 2 mile radius.

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Another gated subdivison

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Yet another entrance to a gated subdivision.

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A creek runs under this bridge.

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Looking forward...

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Looking down a quiet residential street.

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Looking back down the main drag

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Okay. That's enough residential. Now we will look at the two major shopping centers within walking distance. The first is called the Fountains, and it is currently under construction. It will have 94,000 sq feet of shops and restaurants and few office out parcels. Here are a few shots of the Fountains

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All right, now onto Blakney (I didn't spell that properly). This shopping center will have some 450,000 sq feet upon completion and much of it is finished now. Right now it has two starbucks, 2 banks, a gas station with a full tin roof, Harris teeter, Target, ice cream shop, 3 restaurants, and lots more is coming soon. It kind of looks like Disney Land to me.

This empty grassy part will be home of a 190,000 sq feet shopping center development. I have no idea what exactly will go there.

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Across the road there are many office and medical condos, and many townhomes.

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Some more retail is on the way...

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Something is going up here...

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Charlotte is one of those cities that is growing at breakneck speed and nowhere is that more evident than out on the edges. The areas that I took pictures of are: Tom Short Rd and Audrey Kell Rd, and Rea Rd at Audrey Kell.

A few facts about this edge of Charlotte. Charlotte has a statistics system called NSAs (neighborhood statistical areas), and in this NSA median household income is $155,000 and there are 5,000 people as of 2004. A huge new subdivision of thousands of homes is under construction on an old farm so that will likely jump. Some of the tour took place in Weddington NC which is right across the county border (the creek).

EDIT:

I probably should have posted this in the Charlotte forum. :wacko: I'm not too sure many people outside of Charlotte are interested in these new shopping centers. :P

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While those are good pics, they do illustrate the kind of split personality that Charlotte is developing.

I should explain for people from elsewhere that stumble on these pics:

The developments pictured are about 10 miles from the center of the city, and represent the 'dark side' of Charlotte growth, in the context of Urban Planet. While some attempts are being made to incorporate walkable elements into the 'affordable' parts of these new devleopments - i.e. having townhomes and 5-6 story apartment/condo buildings within walking distance to a grocery store and some retail, a majority of residents in that part of town are in single family homes that are 'only a short drive' to the same groceries and shops - completely suburban.

I need to find the source for this statistic, but I read somewhere that less than 10% of the residents of the neighborhoods in this outer ring of development regularly travel to downtown/inner ring neighborhoods for leisure or cultural activities.

The other side of Charlotte growth, believe it or not based on the suburbs pictured here, are high end / high rise condo developments within 1 mile of the center of the city as well as many active projects redeveloping/rebuilding inner and middle ring neighborhoods within a 5-6 mile radius of downtown. I'll try to put together a photo tour of the 'real' Charlotte in the near future to show the other side.

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we might complain about this development, but it is light years ahead of the strip style stuff that proliferated until 15 years ago or so. This mega neighborhood retail centers with faux main streets are the fad now. theyre actually not that bad, considering they are located in the midst of thousands of homes and actually attract maybe 10% of sales by pedestrian traffic....(guessing) i am not supporting sprawl, just noting that it has improved. Unfortunately the strip style stuff is still going on in adjacent counties.

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While those are good pics, they do illustrate the kind of split personality that Charlotte is developing.

I should explain for people from elsewhere that stumble on these pics:

The developments pictured are about 10 miles from the center of the city, and represent the 'dark side' of Charlotte growth, in the context of Urban Planet. While some attempts are being made to incorporate walkable elements into the 'affordable' parts of these new devleopments - i.e. having townhomes and 5-6 story apartment/condo buildings within walking distance to a grocery store and some retail, a majority of residents in that part of town are in single family homes that are 'only a short drive' to the same groceries and shops - completely suburban.

I need to find the source for this statistic, but I read somewhere that less than 10% of the residents of the neighborhoods in this outer ring of development regularly travel to downtown/inner ring neighborhoods for leisure or cultural activities.

The other side of Charlotte growth, believe it or not based on the suburbs pictured here, are high end / high rise condo developments within 1 mile of the center of the city as well as many active projects redeveloping/rebuilding inner and middle ring neighborhoods within a 5-6 mile radius of downtown. I'll try to put together a photo tour of the 'real' Charlotte in the near future to show the other side.

You don't have to explain nmcheese. :D This is standard fare for much of the country in the higher end suburban areas: gated communities with brick inlaid entrance, lifestyle villages ILO strip malls (although that one should be called "The Fountain" singular, not plural :P ), etc. etc. In fact, that lifestyle village looks strangely familiar to the plans for one going up about a mile from my house.

But for every ONE condo being built within "1 mile of the city center", my guess is there are 20 HOMES being built on the fringe. So if your city is adding 1000 new condos this year, look for 20,000 new homes added to your burbs. :whistling:

Whaddayaknow, at Builder Magazine online, it does show that the Charlotte area added about 22,000 new homes in 2005:

#19 Builder Magazine Online "Local Leaders"

BTW: Great pictures Moonshield!

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ah, home sweet home lol.

I did get to go in Longview to see the Charity Home in there... it was a sprawling 8,000 square foot mindboggler. :wacko:

Great pics Moonshield.

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