Charlotte Talks on WFAE

Weekdays at 9:00 a.m., Mon-Thurs at 9:00 p.m. and Saturdays at 7:00 a.m.
  • Hosted by Mike Collins

You're invited to join the conversation during our live broadcast by E-mail at Or on Facebook and Twitter


  Use iTunes  Use Another Player  RSS

Ways to Connect

U.S. Department of Agriculture / Flickr

Most of us take water for granted but severe drought in the west has demonstrated just how precious it is. Essential to life, we’re starting to run low on water. Recent satellite data from NASA reveals that more than half the world’s largest aquifers are being depleted, putting the global water supply at risk. Public Radio’s Ira Flatow and the NASA scientist referred to as the “Al Gore of Water” tell us more.

Opera Carolina / Actor's Theatre

Apr 5, 2016

Part 1 Opera Carolina Performs Aleko and Pagliacci
It’s an Opera Carolina double-header:  two operas hit the stage this week in Charlotte-- back to back with similar themes, but by different composers.  We hear about Aleko and Pagliacci and from the lead in Pagliacci who sings the world over but is making his Carolina debut.  Ironically, he lives in Rock Hill. We’ll discuss that and much more.

Former Gov. Jim Martin And Biographer John Hood

Apr 4, 2016

In the early '80s, Jim Martin was Mecklenburg County’s Republican congressman. He would go on to hold the governor’s office for eight years. It was a job he initially balked at considering, figuring he wouldn’t like it-- but his eight years in office may have been the starting point for the Republican domination of state government we’re witnessing today. Governor Martin is the subject of a new biography and he joins us along with his biographer to talk about life, politics and more.

Friday News Roundup

Apr 1, 2016

In the news this week, North Carolina is getting hammered for the legislature’s move to overturn Charlotte’s LGBT ordinance. Fallout is coming from all corners. Meanwhile, Charlotte’s fire chief survives after a closed city council meeting investigating a leaked memo. Charlotte gets a first-of-its-kind report on the entrepreneur scene here even as we start getting some population growth competition. Those stories and more during the local weekly news roundup.

Islamic State Recruits In The US

Mar 31, 2016

It is hard to fathom the allure that terrorist groups can have on people. The recruitment efforts of ISIS in the U.S. has been described as unprecedented and last year, a record number of Americans were arrested for ISIS-related activities, including a 19-year-old from Morganton. What is the appeal? Why are these warped ideas resonating with some in the west? A conversation about that. 

UNC System President Margaret Spellings (Rebroadcast)

Mar 30, 2016
Jennifer Worsham / WFAE

Margaret Spellings, former U.S. secretary of education, just took the reins as head of the University of North Carolina system. Her appointment was swirling in controversy for how it was done and she was met with protests on her first day in office. But on that first day, she laid out her plans for the system and her agenda for her first several weeks on the job. That may have gotten lost in the news about the protests but we'll let Margaret Spellings explain her vision. 

Originally aired 3/15/16

Making Charlotte A Bicycle-Friendly City

Mar 29, 2016
CC0 Public Domain

Traffic in Charlotte becomes more congested with every passing year. Some think part of the answer is more bicycles and the city has been working for years to become more bicycle friendly. Still, it can be dangerous for cyclists to share the road. Sustain Charlotte is now working to bring protected bike lanes to uptown providing a separate space for cyclists - a protected buffer between them and motorists. 

SouthPark's Growing Pains

Mar 28, 2016

Growth is everywhere in Charlotte and nowhere is more apparent than in the SouthPark area. It has long been said that SouthPark will inevitably be like Atlanta's Buckhead. Built on what was farmland a generation or two ago, the area is now facing big city problems, congestion, new office towers and hundreds of apartment units. The Urban Land Institute was asked to dig into the challenges facing SouthPark and we hear what they found. 

Friday News Roundup

Mar 25, 2016

On the Charlotte Talks weekly news roundup, the state legislature went into special session to deal with Charlotte’s LGBT ordinance and then took things a little further. City Council worries about their media room being bugged. The first public beach in Mecklenburg County opens on Lake Norman. Matthews considers splitting from CMS and the Hornets are HOT. Those stories and more with our roundtable of reporters.

Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts

Mar 23, 2016

Jennifer Roberts has been Charlotte's mayor for 100 days. When she took office she laid out some ambitious initiatives including the expansion of LGBT protections. Her success in that area has gotten the unwanted attention of the legislature which is convening a special session to force a repeal. Mayor Roberts joins us to talk about that, some of her other accomplishments, and about what else is on her 'to-do' list.