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Skate park at Charlotte's old Eastland Mall site shuts down to make way for development

Nick de la Canal
A skater is seen in 2020 at the Eastland DIY Skatepark. It's shutting down now as a mixed-use development begins to go up on the site, which was once home to the Eastland Mall.

A community skate park in east Charlotte closed Thursday to make way for a $26 million mixed-use development at the site of the old Eastland Mall.

The new development will house the headquarters for the Charlotte FC Major League Soccer team as well as offices, stores and apartments.

The Eastland DIY Skatepark was built by skaters in 2015 at the property near Central Avenue and Albemarle Road. The Eastland Mall closed in 2010 and was demolished in 2013.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools teacher Rob Grauer is one of the people who regularly uses the park, and he told City Council members on Monday that the skate park is an important community space.

"The skateboard community at Eastland DIY is large, diverse and dynamic," Grauer said. ".... But it’s not too late to make it right. Gift us a spot to continue building community."

There are no official plans yet for a new skate park or a flea market, which mainly operated on weekends at the site. The flea market was shut down last month, WCNC-TV reported.

At Monday's City Council meeting, Assistant City Manager Brent Cagle said staff is looking into it.

"The city does not have a dedicated bucket of money for that, but we are looking at alternatives and do plan to be discussing those with the City Council and the city manager as we progress," Cagle said.

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Jeanne is a producer for All Things Considered on WFAE. She previously worked at NPR member station WUGA in Athens, Georgia, where she graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in journalism. Jeanne originally grew up outside of Atlanta, Georgia.