Nov 28, 2022 - Neighborhoods

The ugliest places in Charlotte, according to readers

Quail Village

Quail Village

A few weeks ago, we asked you for your thoughts on the most unsightly places in Charlotte.

Why it matters: Charlotte takes a lot of pride in how the city looks. All fast-growing cities do. Still, many of y’all say there are a few neglected, strange and otherwise visually unappealing spots around town.

  • Yes, but: Charlotte is a beautiful city filled with plenty of beautiful landmarks, towers, homes, etc. This was just a fun exercise.

Here are Charlotte’s most notable eyesores, according to responses from readers:

Photo: Katie Peralta Soloff/Axios

Quail Hollow hole

One spot in particular received the most responses: The vast, undeveloped and overgrown yet prominent pit down Park Road near Quail Hollow.

Backstory: The property on Gleneagles has been owned by Dee-Dee Harris and Harris Land Co. since the early 1990s. Plans for the property have been proposed several times over the years — including to add high-end tenants like a Saks Fifth Avenue and a Ritz-Carlton Hotel — but the property remains in limbo.

What they’re saying: “I can’t believe the country club hasn’t demanded that it is at least turned into a green space – what a blemish for Charlotte, particularly during the golf tournaments!” -Amy T.

  • “It could become a beautiful little park/garden that would bring much beauty to that corner.” Jane C.

[Go deeper: What’s with that huge, overgrown property out by Quail Hollow?]

Photo by Myles Gelbach
Photo by Myles Gelbach

The Truist lights

Backstory: After Atlanta-based SunTrust and Winston-Salem-based BB&T merged in 2019 to create Truist, the new bank selected Charlotte for its headquarters. Truist bought the former Hearst Tower on Tryon for $455 million, a state record for an office building, for its new headquarters. Atop its new HQ, the bank added gigantic, purple-glowing signs.

  • The Truist lights are polarizing, to say the least. Some people love them — others hated them so much they started a Change.org petition to have them removed.

What they’re saying:God, what a disgrace to a previously gorgeous landmark. I’d rather we just had a hole in the ground.” -Lucy H.

[Go deeper: Uptown’s Truist lights — a ‘scarlet letter’ or ‘misunderstood genius’?]

Levine parking deck in First Ward

Backstory: Charlotte-based Levine Properties reached a deal more than a decade ago with the city and redevelop First Ward in exchange for infrastructure reimbursements, per CBJ. But Levine’s parking deck at 10th and Brevard streets has been under construction for years. Work remains ongoing while a city-set deadline is long overdue, CBJ reported.

What they’re saying: “Ugliest and most frustrating has to be the abandoned 90% built parking deck at Brevard and 11th in uptown. Like why?” -Rob S.

The pink building in South End

Backstory: The 22-story high-rise condo building, called the Arlington, opened almost 20 years ago. Covered in pink glass, the building was divisive from its early days. In a 2001 CBJ story, Dan Morrill, then the consulting director for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission, called the property “extremely unsophisticated” and “an intrusion into the cityscape.”

What they’re saying: “Gotta go with the pink building for Charlotte’s biggest eyesore.” -Elizabeth R.

Other nominees

Trails at Latta Park. Photo courtesy of reader Ruth G.

Lack of investment in Charlotte parks:One of the ugliest spots in Charlotte? The eroding paths in Latta Park. Not only because they’re aesthetically appalling, but also because it speaks of the ugly truth about our county’s Park and Recreation department — it’s long been underfunded and understaffed. Our volunteer group has been begging Park and Rec to address these issues for SEVEN YEARS. That’s ugly.” -Ruth G.

Waverly: “Where once there were trees and a smallish retail strip with local businesses such as Hickory Tavern, now there is an ugly, commercial expanse of nightmarish-grey concrete blocks of chain restaurants.” -Melissa L.

Concrete structures off I-77 near the Music Factory: “The ugliest spot are the storage tanks at I-277 near 11th street off Statesville Ave. They are an eyesore coming into and going out of our beautiful uptown. At least let artist paint murals on them.” -Jeff M.

Hyatt Place building: “From the early 2000s faux-postmodern design, to the flat looking thin brick, to the asymmetrical windows, to the awful rooftop restaurant… everything about the building is bad.” -Joshua S.

New apartments: “No imagination in design and an eyesore to many neighborhoods.” -Jane C.

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