2014 Legacy Award Winner

Legacy Award- Charlotte Center City Partners

In 2010, the AIA North Carolina Board of Directors established the Legacy Award to recognize significant contributions to architecture by a non-architect, an individual or a group.  Tonight’s recipients of the Legacy Award have profoundly influenced urban planning and design and dramatically increased the public’s awareness of, and participation in, architecture in North Carolina’s largest metropolitan region.

AIA North Carolina is pleased to present the 2014 Legacy Award to the Charlotte Center City Partners.

CCCP is a private non-profit that achieves its mission by providing visioning and leadership through urban planning and economic development, through marketing the unique brand of the center city and by programming memorable experiences.

The organization facilitates and promotes the economic and cultural development of the urban core.

In 1979, seeing a need for a more coordinated effort to improve Charlotte’s urban core, Business leaders, Center City residents and city government formed the Uptown Development Corporation. The name changed to Charlotte Center City Partners in 1997 and in 2004, the South End Development Corporation merged with Charlotte Center City Partners and South End became a part of the district. The organization is funded primarily by a municipal service district levy assessed to property owners in the Center City.

The CCCP vision is a viable, livable, memorable and sustainable Center City with modern infrastructure, a tapestry of great urban neighborhoods, and a diversity of thriving businesses. Their work advances the continuation of the growth of a city as pedestrian-friendly and walkable, with comfortable and interesting neighborhoods. It must have mixed growth, with balanced initiatives that are leveraged by public and private investment.

Charlotte Center City Partners is responsible for the creation and adoption of the Center City vision plan and facilitating its fulfillment through leadership, advocacy and expertise in economic development, urban planning and promoting capital investment. The organization also helps shape the development of arts, culture and education in the urban core. It facilitates programming that animates the Center City through event production and the support of retail and hospitality.

CCCP shares and promotes the experience, and the brand of the Center City, through marketing campaigns, public relations and new media tools.

They manage the city’s bike sharing program, Charlotte B-cycle (with 24 stations and 200 bikes) and the 7th Street Public Market (with 15 business owners and more than $2-million in annual sales). CCCP also works with Envision Charlotte, Uptown’s sustainability initiative, introduced at the Clinton Global Initiatives.

In support of the CCCP’s nomination for the Legacy Award, Cathy Morrison, AIA with Gantt Huberman Architects and 2014 AIA Charlotte President noted, “Charlotte is the city it is today because of the advocacy and vision Center City Partners.  Through their numerous master plans and creative development strategies, Charlotte is the home to major and minor league sports, world-class cultural institutions, as well as great streets and neighborhoods.  It’s energizing to be an architect in a city with as much vision and passion for growth and good design.  Charlotte Center City Partners has had a strong role in making that happen.”

Marley Carrol, FAIA followed up Cathy’s assessment by highlighting one of the most recent major additions to the city’s core. He commented,  “One of Charlotte Center City Partners most significant contributions was the leadership they provided in the relocation of the Charlotte Knights back to their proper place in the Center City. It required a complicated land swap, which was a critical an important part of this move, that CCCP was instrumental in helping to negotiate.

Recently the organization began a new long-term look at its direction. We think their own roll out video captures the sprit of what this organization, their mission, and its accomplishments have meant for the area.

David Furhman, FAIA, a pioneer in Charlotte center city development, offered his view on the organization by saying, “We are fortunate in Charlotte to have a first class organization like Center City Partners, headed by Michael Smith and an amazing team of multi-disciplined, widely experienced staff, to shepherd over the evolution of our downtown, through the go-go growth years, as well as the depressing recession, and now back to the “lets get on with it” times we’re currently enjoying. Their commitment and energy, combined with creative ideas and planning initiatives, has been instrumental in making our center city a much better place…to live, work, and play. I am proud to live in a city where this progressive environment, nurtured and extended by Charlotte Center City Partners,  is making such a positive difference.

AIA North Carolina is delighted to present the 2014 Legacy Award to Charlotte Center City Partners.