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Charlotte Delays Vote To Give County Extension To Sell Uptown Park For Redevelopment

Charlotte_Marshall_Park_public_domain.jpg
CC0 Public Domain
Marshall Park is seen in uptown Charlotte

Charlotte City Council on Monday delayed a vote on whether to give Mecklenburg County a 10-year extension to sell an uptown park to make way for development.

Under a 2007 agreement, the county had until the end of this year to sell Marshall Park or the land would revert to city property. The plan is for the park to become Brooklyn Village – a mixed-use redevelopment that will include housing, offices, retail and green space.

The name comes from Charlotte's old Brooklyn neighborhood, a once-thriving African American community that was destroyed in the 1960s as part of urban renewal.

The county picked a developer last year, BK Partners, but the company has yet to buy the land.

Council member Braxton Winston asked for the vote to be delayed and the matter referred to the city's Neighborhood Development Committee.

"A lot has changed since 2007, so we need much more contemplation and discussion about this," Winston said.

Council also referred a vote on affordable housing guarantees for the project to committee for now.

Several other councilmembers also asked to delay the vote.

“This is the county’s deal, and I don’t understand why they need 10 years, and maybe they do, but that’s not our problem," said council member Julie Eiselt. "We need a better explanation as to why all the sudden something that expires next month is being extended 10 years.”

The city had previously said an extension could give "leverage" to the county. Pam Wideman, the city's housing director, said the county thinks the project could take up to 10 years to complete the project after the land is bought.

“The deal will move forward: It will just be a decision of whether or not to have Marshall Park be a part of the development and the amount of affordable housing, if any, that will be included with it," Wideman said at Monday's meeting. "The development will move forward.” 

In the original deal, the city and county swapped land: The county got Marshall Park and the city got what became BB&T Ballpark.