Is a Wegmans coming to south Charlotte? One expert thinks so

CHARLOTTE — Three local developers want to rezone 115 acres in south Charlotte for a project that could eventually include 45,000 square feet of offices, a 100,000-square-foot grocery store, 80,000 square feet of retail and 1,500 residential units, including at least 300 affordable housing units.

Levine Properties, Northwood Ravin, and Horizon Development Properties are all expected to have filed rezoning plans by the end of today for the site of Providence Square Shopping Center and adjacent property. That’s near the intersection of Providence Road, Old Providence Road and Sardis Lane.

A spokesperson for the project said the three firms have assembled the property needed for the multi-phase development. The rezoning requests consist of three separate applications.

According to a news release, the project says the revitalization will include replacing large numbers of obsolete units and a full renovation of others, as well as retaining the Moments of Hope Church in the old Harris Teeter space and an existing recreation/tennis facility.

“Inspired by the long-term goals of Charlotte’s 2040 Plan efforts, these proposed rezonings will energize an area in need of revitalization and bring the idea of 10-minute neighborhoods to life, where people can access most day-to-day needs within a short distance from home,” Levine Properties President Daniel Levine said.

The rezoning requests will be heard in the next few months. They will require a public hearing and a Charlotte City Council vote.

Is the 100,000-square-foot grocery store Wegmans?

In the early 2000s, the Providence Square Shopping Center was home to a Harris Teeter. The developers are proposing the return of a grocery store option for this part of south Charlotte. The 100,000-square-foot store is nearly double the size of a typical Harris Teeter or Food Lion.

Supermarket expert Phil Lempert of supermarketguru.com says he would bet the new store is Wegmans.

“Danny and Colleen Wegman have their eyes on you, Charlotte,” he said. “I would bet on it.”

A source tells Channel 9, the Providence and Sardis area was pitched to Wegmans four or five years ago as a potential location for a new store. A spokesperson for Wegmans declined to comment. Levine did not respond to a question asking if Wegmans is the future store.

Lempert says other typical stores of this size do not have a presence in North Carolina including Meijer and Hy-Vee. A Walmart, according to Lempert, would not make sense in this area.

Lempert says Charlotte’s population growth, resident background, and culinary scene make the city a desirable market. Wegmans has four stores in North Carolina and an additional store is planning to open in Holly Springs.

If Wegmans is coming to south Charlotte, Lempert says other stores will have to step up.

“I think what you’re going to see with all the other retailers, is they’re going to have to up their game as it relates to more unique products, more local products, more prepared foods.,” he said.

Housing Future

The 115-acre site includes the rezoning of several housing complexes. One of the complexes is Crest on Providence Apartments. Northwood Ravin’s plans call for replacing a portion of the property with single-family, rental townhomes and apartments. Northwood Ravin plans to renovate 100 units to preserve them as naturally occurring affordable housing. It is unclear what the current occupancy rate is for the development.

The rezoning petitions also include Inlivian’s Gladedale Homes. Horizon Development Properties is Inlivian’s nonprofit development subsidiary. Plans call for a mix of housing types, including at least 225 affordable housing units. Gladedale is currently home to 49 units.

“Our vision is to create a mix of new affordable/workforce housing units to help residents live near job opportunities throughout our community,” said Kevin Boyett, senior vice president of Real Estate Development of Horizon. “Maintaining and expanding affordability within our Gladedale community is a key priority.”

Next steps

The Charlotte City Council will hold a public hearing and vote in the coming months. The developers will also have to host community meetings to brief neighbors on the plans.

Read more here.

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