The Charlotte City Council on Monday approved a rezoning for the 72-acre Camp North End development off Statesville Avenue, north of uptown.
The unanimous vote will allow New York-based ATCO to turn the warehouse and factory complex into a mixed-use development of housing, offices, restaurants and shops. City officials and the developer say it could transform Charlotte's North End by bringing jobs and spurring other new developments.
ATCO bought the site last December for about $17 million. The site at various times has housed a Ford Model T plant, an Army depot, a missile factory and a Rite-Aid distribution center.
ATCO's plans call for up to 1,500 apartments and 1.5 million square feet of office space. The developers have said they expect it to become a hub for entertainment and business in the North End area.
Monday's vote changes the zoning on the site from general industrial to mixed-use. The city is expected to provide some assistance - such as business recruiting and improvements in streets and infrastructure.
The CAMP North End project fits into broader city initiatives to improve the entire corridor from uptown to UNC Charlotte.
The development is expected to take years to complete. While it has broad approval from city officials, they're also concerned that it could wind up gentrifying the neighborhood around it.
"We have to really be careful about what we do next," Mayor Pro-Tem Vi Lyles said. "There are going to be a lot of houses over here that will probably sell for a hundred, a hundred-twenty-five thousand dollars. And they're on big lots. And as we make this change, how do we protect those folks so that they can stay in their homes and a have a place that they can enjoy the transformation that's going to take place and the kind of lifestyle that this can bring to them as well."
ATCO has voluntarily committed to include some affordable housing as part of Camp North End. That will include about 7 percent of the first two phases, or 42 units.
City officials have said they're already working with the neighborhoods. "The community is in support of this project," said District 5 council member Carlenia Ivory.
ATCO rezoning petition on CharlotteNC.gov
City of Charlotte North End Smart District map and brochure at CharlotteNC.gov