CHARLOTTE – The Charlotte Area Transit System is about to engage the community on its attitudes about transit-oriented development through the future LYNX Silver Line corridor.
CATS held a virtual community meeting June 22 explaining the development study and its timeline.
The light rail line will span 29 miles from Belmont to Indian Trail with 29 stations in between. The project is expected to attract a variety of residential and commercial uses within walking distance of stations.
“Designing the light rail system itself is not only about getting people from one place to another,” said John Howard, a CATS official managing the development piece. “We're also trying to design neighborhoods and community.”
He said transit-oriented design takes into account mobility and access, land use, community design and equity.
Community design is important, he said, as it considers how light rail affects towns outside of Charlotte.
Part of the study will look at enhancing connections to different land uses, including walk zones leading up to the stations.
The LYNX Blue Line has attracted multi-family apartments and condos as well as townhomes. Unlike the Blue Line, CATS is delving into the development piece much earlier with the Silver Line.
Monica Holmes, a planner with the City of Charlotte, said the study will consider what place we want to be and what infrastructure is needed to access transit and enable transit-oriented development.
The study will examine the market, affordable housing and employment.
CATS hopes to present a final plan on development in December. In the meanttime, it hopes to engage the public at seven key station areas, including the downtown and sportsplex areas of Matthews.
CATS plans on identifying infrastructure for these areas, including where parks and open spaces as well as affordable housing can go. The effort will also identify potential joint-use developments.
Upcoming engagement activities for the station area planning are as follows: Belmont (July 12), Remount (July 13), Bojangles (July 20), Village Lake (July 21), Downtown Matthews (July 22) and Stallings/Indian Trail (July 23).