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From today's (11/15/19) Charlotte Ledger Business Newsletter - ""News in Brief""

Big park envisioned but  … :  Architects and developers are making plans for a 220-acre park near NoDa that would be twice as big as Freedom Park.  But before you get too excited, it’s on a rail yard owned by Norfolk Southern. Railroads are notoriously difficult to deal with, but there’s some optimism.  Organizers are calling it “Queens Park.”  (Charlotte Ledger)

"Queens Park, the site’s proposed name, would be the area bordered on the west and east by North Tryon and Brevard streets, then Matheson Avenue and 16th Street to its north and south."  "The park, supporters say, would be a way to connect neighborhoods that aren’t accessible to one another today, such as the North Tryon corridor and Optimist Park. A park is also an egalitarian use of the space — free for all to use. And the park could one day provide a vast staging ground to host major events, such as concerts or an NFL draft."  “We see this as a great opportunity to introduce more green space, stitch the community back together in this particular area, and also plan for the future growth of Charlotte in that direction,” says Rugel Chiriboga, a principal with Odell Architects." (Charlotte Agenda)

"One major potential hangup? The land belongs to Norfolk Southern. The group is already considering ways around that, though." ... "The city did work with Norfolk Southern to expand its intermodal facility at Charlotte’s airport in 2012.  The intermodal is where shipping containers transported by train are transferred to truck trailers to be driven elsewhere throughout the region." (Charlotte Agenda)

Norfolk Southern could move the bulk of its functions currently handled at the rail yard out to that intermodal area, according to Kuhn and others pushing for the park. At least two main commuter lines would remain at the park, Kuhn says. But there are ways to integrate them into the area’s design." ... "Shannon Binns, CEO of Sustain Charlotte, has been advising Friends of Queen Park. Binns says since the rail yard is privately owned, the city and county could work on some sort of land swap with Norfolk Southern to turn it into public space." ... "It is hard to imagine the idea for a central park going very far unless Norfolk Southern gives up control of that land, or sells it." (Charlotte Agenda)

"Odell is the local architecture and engineering firm behind a number of high-profile local projects, including the Knights Stadium uptown and the old Coliseum on Tyvola Road. It was also former mayor Harvey Gantt’s first employer when he moved to Charlotte in the 1960s."  "Odell has worked with developer Tony Kuhn of the Flywheel Group to determine roughly how the park would be laid out."  "Odell and Kuhn envision vast stretches of trees, gardens, and pathways.  Like other urban parks, Queens Park could include a music venue and art installations.  In one rendering, Odell includes a massive metallic globe. Not unlike Chicago’s Bean statue — an identifiable meetup spot, seemingly made for Instagram."  “Why can’t we do exactly what all these other cities are doing?” says Todd Serdula of the Flywheel Group." (Charlotte Agenda)

"Also working on the effort is Eric Spengler, a local attorney with Spengler & Agans, PLLC, who recently formed a nonprofit called Friends of Queens Park LLC."  "With the rapid redevelopment throughout North End, along the light-rail corridor especially, developers and city officials need to be more mindful about creating green space, Spengler says."  "It’s going to take some heavy lifting and some investment, but that’s the whole point,” Spengler says."  “Without that type of bold action you’re just going to have another South End, which is great, but it could be even better.” (Charlotte Agenda)

Proposed Queens Park in North End

Rendering of Queens Park in North End. Courtesy of Odell Associates

220-acre version of New York City’s Central Park proposed for a longstanding north Charlotte rail yard

Queens Park would be the area bordered on the west and east by North Tryon and Brevard streets, then Matheson Avenue and 16th Street to its north and south. (Photo Credit - Logan Cyrus - Charlotte Agenda)

Links:  https://charlotteledger.substack.com/arlotteagenda.com/186266/220-acre-version-of-new-york-citys-central-park-proposed-for-a-longstanding-north-charlotte-rail-yard/  (Charlotte Agenda)

https://charlotteledger.substack.com/ (Charlotte Ledger)

Edited by QCxpat
Photo credit - Odell Associates
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Chances this happens.... maybe 2%? 1%?

No funding, on land owned by a private company that isn't looking to sell? 

Edited by CLT2014

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20 minutes ago, CLT2014 said:

Chances this happens.... maybe 2%? 1%?

No funding, on land owned by a private company that isn't looking to sell? 

My guess is it would eventually be on the former intermodal yard land (the vacant land running along N Brevard St) aka, not any of the actual rail areas. But probably a LONG time.

Edited by SgtCampsalot

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1 hour ago, CLT2014 said:

Chances this happens.... maybe 2%? 1%?

No funding, on land owned by a private company that isn't looking to sell? 

I'd say 8%. 

That said... I think if you could offer NS a land swap for land near the new intermodal, with better highway access, it's feasible.

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We have some new art along the Sugar Creek Greenway....a large mural has been painted on the side of one of the buildings at the poop plant on Tyvola.   I was running so I didn't get a photo but is was a nice bright colorful addition to the greenway.   The mural had something to do with explaining the filter process.  Pretty cool. 

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Does anyone know why most of the small trees and bushes along the Stewart/Irwin Creek greenway connector were clear-cut? Not the most striking of trees, but it still made for a much more shady walk or run and I saw people regularly take professional pictures underneath some of the more attractive trees.

Hopefully they are replaced by something else, otherwise it seems like a massive waste to cut them all down.

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On 11/29/2019 at 9:38 AM, DH17 said:

Does anyone know why most of the small trees and bushes along the Stewart/Irwin Creek greenway connector were clear-cut? Not the most striking of trees, but it still made for a much more shady walk or run and I saw people regularly take professional pictures underneath some of the more attractive trees.

Hopefully they are replaced by something else, otherwise it seems like a massive waste to cut them all down.

According to a thread on nextdoor it has to do with concerns from Duke around trees under the transmission lines. Seems silly to me considering the trees were short cherry trees and have been there for years. Apparently county and Duke are in talks about what they can be replaced with. Wesley Heights community association is involved as well.

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Sorry for the lazy post, but can somebody point me to a map of the greenway/trail currently being built under 485 along Little Sugar Creek  near South Blvd?  I couldn't find one in a cursory search.....weak google fu this morning.  Thanks!

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26 minutes ago, grodney said:

Sorry for the lazy post, but can somebody point me to a map of the greenway/trail currently being built under 485 along Little Sugar Creek  near South Blvd?  I couldn't find one in a cursory search.....weak google fu this morning.  Thanks!

https://charlottenc.gov/Projects/Pages/XCLT485toPolk.aspx 

Map is hidden here:

 LSCG-I-485%20to%20Polk%20Historic%20Site

 

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On 12/1/2019 at 6:16 PM, DCtransplant said:

According to a thread on nextdoor it has to do with concerns from Duke around trees under the transmission lines. Seems silly to me considering the trees were short cherry trees and have been there for years. Apparently county and Duke are in talks about what they can be replaced with. Wesley Heights community association is involved as well.

Thanks for the scoop. That's...extremely frustrating. Those lines are very high and the trees were not.

Ah well, hopefully the community and all stakeholders find a suitable replacement.

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On 12/2/2019 at 7:38 PM, DH17 said:

Thanks for the scoop. That's...extremely frustrating. Those lines are very high and the trees were not.

Ah well, hopefully the community and all stakeholders find a suitable replacement.

I emailed the county about it and they claim they requested that Duke leave the trees be but that they didn't meet their regulations so they went and cut them down. Prior to that conversation even happening, the county said it has been planning new landscaping along the trail and is just looking for funding to complete it. 

 

Really bummed that Duke handled it the way they did. Not sure how 15 foot cherry trees interfere with their 50ft transmission lines.

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I try to tell you people but just as Duke says, if all lines were underground they would still have to cut the trees. And drunk drivers would damage lines underground. And squirrels would chew through transformers underground. Duke knows power. (definition undefined)

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They have cleared all the trees at the greenway for the extension just north of Tyvola in the past week.  They really took out a lot of trees on both side of the creek so it looks way different there now. 

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Also in greenway "news", they have added quite a few paintings on the pavement/asphalt between Archdale and Huntingtown Farms.   Looks really nice!  Similar but different from the magic carpet on the rail trail. 

Also, I am terrible that I never post pics since most of the time I am running on the greenway w/o my phone :-(

 

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21 hours ago, InSouthPark said:

They have cleared all the trees at the greenway for the extension just north of Tyvola in the past week.  They really took out a lot of trees on both side of the creek so it looks way different there now. 

Pics or it didn't happen! Thanks!

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