Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission

Author: Elizabeth Stuart

September 21, 2020

The Community Builders, “a national developer that specializes in mixed-income housing,” which also owns the historic Johnston Mill, located at 3315 North Davidson Street, is proposing a major rehabilitation of the property. The proposed project includes renovating the historic mill building as an apartment building and constructing a new building on the property. 

The Charlotte Agenda details the history of the historic mill and the plans for its renovation: “45 years after it closed, the historic Johnston Mill building in NoDa will soon get new life

The Design Review Committee of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission will review this project at its virtual meeting on September 30. Details can be found here for those interested in attending. 

The Design Review Committee meeting scheduled for Wednesday, September 30, 2020, will be a virtual meeting. Please note there will be no accommodation for any in-person attendance. If you need special accommodations, please contact the HLC office at 980-314-7660.

Instructions and Access to Meeting

Draft Agenda
September 30, 2020 – 8:00 a.m.

1.  Chair’s Report: Garrett Nelson

2.  Staff Report: Jack Thomson and Stewart Gray

3.  Davidson School, 251 South Street, Davidson, N.C.

The Committee will review a revision to an approved plan with a substitution of new ceiling materials for the principal building. 

Reflected Ceiling Plan

Previously Approved Plans

Davidson School

4.  Johnston Mill, 3315 North Davidson Street, Charlotte, N.C.

The applicant is proposing a renovation of the historic mill building and infill development.   

Construction Documents

Building Elevations

Description of Rehabilitation Work

Johnston Mill

5.  James C. Dowd House, 2216 Monument Street, Charlotte, N.C.

The applicant is seeking conceptual approval for a renovation of the house and site development.

Proposed Plans

James C. Dowd House

6.  Old Business

7.  New Business

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission has completed a survey project that concentrated on identifying historic African American resources along a portion of Beatties Ford Road in Charlotte. The area studied is located between the Brookshire Freeway and Interstate 85, and includes the Washington Heights Neighborhood, the University Park Neighborhood, and the many houses and commercial and institutional buildings that front directly onto Beatties Ford Road. While nearby areas associated with the African American community had been investigated and/or inventoried, no inventory of the subject area’s important historic resources had been made. In addition, the HLC recognized a need to develop general history of the large and prominent University Park Neighborhood.

Under contract with the HLC, historical consultant and Johnson C. Smith University Archivist Brandon Lunsford began the survey work and historical research in late 2019. The results are impressive and important for understanding the development of African American communities on Charlotte’s West Side and the overall history of Charlotte. 

Overview of the Beatties Ford Road Corridor Survey Project

  • 2600 Beatties Ford Road

Washington Heights

While there has been solid academic research into the history of Washington Heights, the HLC previously did not have an inventory of the properties in the historic neighborhood. 112 structures in Washington Heights were identified during the survey.

Washington Heights Inventory Spreadsheet

Beatties Ford Road

This survey concentrated on the houses, commercial buildings, and institutional buildings that front directly onto Beatties Ford Road. All pre-1945 structures were inventoried, and any property built before 1970 with potential architectural or historically significance was inventoried.

Beatties Ford Road Historic Properties Inventory Spreadsheet

University Park

No general history of the University Park Neighborhood could be identified by HLC Staff, and thus the production of a concise history of the neighborhood became a priority of the project.

University Park Historical Essay

University Park is a large neighborhood, containing hundreds of homes. A complete inventory of the neighborhood was not deemed feasible for this project. Instead the project concentrated on homes with strong architectural or historical significance.

Significant University Park Properties Spreadsheet

The University Park Neighborhood grew in stages, and initial research into the area failed to identify a definitive boundary of the neighborhood. Using recorded subdivision maps, HLC Staff and the historical consultant were able to develop a boundary of the historic neighborhood. An interesting finding of the Survey is that the residential blocks along Maribe Av, Estelle St, Taylor Av, McDonald St, and portions of Remington St were parts of an early 20th Century un-named neighborhood developed by the Biddleville Development Company.

University Park Boundary Map

The next meeting of the Design Review Committee of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission will be held VIRTUALLY on Wednesday, September 30 at 8:00 a.m.

Access to the meeting will be provided by both video (internet) and audio (internet OR telephone).

The public will be given the opportunity to speak on the agenda items. In order to speak, you must register by 12:00 p.m. on September 29 by sending your name and agenda item of interest to Note that comments will be limited to THREE MINUTES per speaker. 


Instructions and a link for attending the meeting will be posted here by 7:00 a.m. on the day of the meeting.

You should plan to log into the meeting by 7:45 a.m. on the day of the meeting to ensure that you will be admitted to the entire meeting. Please sign in with your first and last name. 

For the best results we strongly urge you to download the Zoom meeting app well in advance of the meeting and familiarize yourself with the software.

If, for any reason, there are technical problems with the virtual meeting before or during the meeting, please return to this page to repeat the login process and/or for any additional instructions or information.

September 17, 2020

Preserve Mecklenburg is working with Lutgert Companies, a developer planning to build luxury condominium homes in Eastover, to save “a griffin that adorns a vacant 1928 home” located on the site of the planned community. Dr. Dan Morrill spoke with The Charlotte Observer about the griffin’s history and why it is important that it be preserved. 

For more: “Developer to preserve ‘historically significant’ piece of Charlotte’s past

Image of the Historic Griffin from Preserve Mecklenburg