City of Charlotte faces lengthy legal process in $115M dispute with streetcar contractor

CHARLOTTE — A flurry of filings in N.C. Business Court in recent weeks appears to set the stage for a contractor’s $115 million lawsuit against the city of Charlotte for work on the CityLynx Gold Line to head to trial. Eventually.

A case management report filed Sept. 22 with the court says Johnson Bros. Corp. and the city of Charlotte have a tentative agreement on a trial date no earlier than March 2025, citing the need for extensive discovery beyond the business court’s standard seven months.


The two sides have been locked in the legal battle since Grapevine, Texas-based Johnson Brothers filed its suit Feb. 20 in Mecklenburg Superior Court, claiming breach of contract, misrepresentation and other contract violations that cost it and subcontractors more than $100 million.

The expansion of the CityLynx Gold Line that opened two years ago faced numerous delays and additional costs during construction.

The most recent actions consist of a motion filed by the city on Aug. 31 to dismiss JBC’s suit, followed by JBC’s opposition filing last week rebutting the city’s assertions. The fight stems from a series of problems during construction of the 2.5-mile segment of the city’s streetcar that opened in August 2021. Those problems spurred public and private finger-pointing that has yet to slow down. The project extended the Gold Line to 4 miles by adding to the existing 1.5-mile portion opened in 2015.

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