Demolition of 108-110 Building paves way for future pocket park

CHARLOTTE, Mich. – Charlotte will soon experience a new community gathering space as the city and CharlotteRising collaborate on the transformation of “The Piece” into a pocket park that welcomes guests, residents and businesses alike, according to CharlotteRising Executive Director Dillon Rush.

This week will mark the last week standing for two infamous buildings in the downtown corridor. MCS Excavating of Holt, Mich., was awarded the demolition bid by the City of Charlotte for the 108/110 E. Lawrence Ave. buildings – dubbed “The Piece.” The community joined together early today to celebrate this newest re-development.

“The demo of the building signifies yet another culmination of tangible progress in downtown,” Rush said. “From vacant to vibrant, the demolition of ‘The Piece’ makes way for the activation of the space.”

The development of the pocket park will take place in the summer of 2018 and furthers the community’s push for artistically creative design and a sense of innovation. The project’s progress is attributed, in part, to the generosity of dozens of businesses and property owners who gifted the city with more than $30,000 to purchase the building.

Lorri Doolittle, owner of Ameriprise Financial, stated, “When I purchased the Charlotte location a couple years ago, I noticed how connected the community was, and when given the opportunity to donate to this future Pocket Park, I told myself I needed to be a part of this because this is really, really exciting.”

“The collaboration between the donors, city, and CharlotteRising is a great demonstration of the unity in this community,” said Charlotte Mayor Tim Lewis, “and this example is a great model for other communities in efforts to achieve great things.”

“The momentum in the community hasn’t stopped and we’re keeping our foot on the gas,” said City of Charlotte Community Development Director Bryan Myrkle. “The city is excited to see the buildings being replaced with a space that is more reflective of where our community is going, and we’re grateful to the community members who contributed to the project. This is going to be another important milestone on our road to revitalization.”

The plans for the pocket park, designed by Viridis Design Group with significant community input, are not yet finalized. As they stand currently, plans include creative and practical seating, various trees and greenery, string lighting, open space for programming, donor recognition, a donated fireplace and a new art piece.

With its location and plans, the pocket park will exist as a warm welcome to the downtown, greeting businesses, residents and all who visit Charlotte.