Why does Charlotte need a Growth Strategy?
Charlotte and the surrounding area continue to grow at a rapid pace, even with the current economic downturn.  Charlotte’s quality of life in the coming years will largely depend on how the City responds to this growth.  Charlotteans expect a high quality of life, and a variety of factors indicate that they also want more lifestyle choices.  Many Charlotteans want to live in single family neighborhoods. Increasingly, however, there is a demand for new forms of urban housing by people seeking less maintenance and better access to Uptown cultural and entertainment amenities. Increasing environmental awareness, along with gas prices, are also affecting where people choose to live or work and how they travel. An aging and expanding infrastructure network, the need to maintain and upgrade facilities like streets and transit and increasing pressure to intensify suburban areas makes strategic planning and investment necessary to provide options without putting livability at risk.
How Fast is Charlotte Growing?
Charlotte’s population more than doubled (to about 675,000 people) between 1980 and 2008.  By 2030, Charlotte is projected to add 287,000 more people and 318,000 more jobs.  Ultimately, Charlotte’s land area will be 376 square miles, making it one of the largest cities in the U.S.  This ongoing growth, along with many square miles of vacant or underutilized land still available for development and redevelopment, show the need for a comprehensive strategy to anticipate and plan for that growth. This will ensure the best use of a valuable resource: land. A good strategy will allow growth to continue to be a key component of Charlotte’s economic vitality without straining our environment, livability and ability to efficiently provide infrastructure.
  Charlotte will be a city with a variety of choices for living, working and leisure; where sustainable growth improves the quality of life.
Charlotte's annexation history through time
Charlotte's City Limits as of 2007 
Click on the map above to view a time elapse, which shows the City's growth over time.