June 30, 2015
Ashley Simmons, Office of the Mayor
704-336-3438 or 704-614-9116                           
Moira Quinn, SVP Communications, Charlotte Center City Partners
Anusha Alikhan, Director of Communications, Knight Foundation
Community leaders gathered to celebrate important news for the historic West End neighborhood. The Knight Foundation announced that it will be investing $1.5 million to spur economic growth in the Historic West End. The neighborhood has experienced economic setbacks that have led to lower income levels and higher crime rates, but will now receive investments to fight back and promote opportunity for its residents.
The initiative will focus on revitalizing areas along the new Gold Line corridor on West Trade Street and Beatties Ford Road. The Gold Line is a $160 million project that should be completed in 2019 that will bring new economic opportunities to businesses and connect neighborhoods in the West End to uptown.
“The Gold Line streetcar will create a physical link between Charlotte’s diverse neighborhoods and the city center,” said Susan Patterson. “The business improvement initiative can leverage this power to connect to make Charlotte more successful. By igniting small businesses and diverse ideas it will help ignite economic growth in the corridor, create spaces where diverse groups people can come together and encourage young talent to live and stay in the city.”
Mayor Clodfelter believes the support from the Knight Foundation meets the timing of growing interest in the West End community.
“The CityLYNX Gold Line will eliminate real and perceived barriers between JCSU and Uptown,” said Clodfelter. “We believe these investments, market conditions, and the streetcar strengthen and attract additional investment. The time to activate our plans for Historic West End is now.”
Charlotte Center City Partners (CCCP) envisions strategies to assist economic, social and cultural development in center city Charlotte. They will be leading the effort to drive economic growth in the area.
Dr. Ron Carter, President of Johnson C. Smith University said  the experience of Center City Partners will be beneificial to ensuring success.
"The professional capacity and experience of Charlotte Center City Partners are critical to the revitalization of the Historic West End, said Carter. "CCCP is uniquely missioned to provide our mosaic of neighborhoods, businesses and institutions with the expertise we need to create critical mass for economic and community development.”