I’m working with a client on a headquarters relocation. Uptown Charlotte is an option, so we visited with Michael Smith at Center City Partners.

Michael met my client and me at his offices. The presentation was impressive!

Here are the highlights:

  • Charlotte continues to lead the country in CBD office construction. Uptown is 4th in the country behind Chicago, Dallas, and Seattle. Speculative office development is rare these days, so this is remarkable.
  • There is 7.7 million SF (5.5 Bank of America Corporate Centers) announced or under construction in Uptown.
  • Soon the CBD will have 35 million SF of office space, which is half of all the class A space in Mecklenburg County.
  • The absorption of office space last year was 1.5 million SF – which is a record.

Now for living in the Center City….great place to work but who lives there?

But first, a pop quiz to test your uptown savvy. (Answers are at the end of this post.)

1. How many employees work in uptown? Now, this is for a Harris Teeter VIC card, so waive your fingers high.

  • A. 65,000
  • B. 95,000
  • C. 114,000
  • D. 1 BILLION

2. What’s the average office rent? I can’t see you!

  • A. $25 per SF
  • B. $3 3.50 per SF
  • C. $38.50 per SF
  • D. $40 per SF

3. How many companies call the Center City home?

  • A. 1,010
  • B. 1,240
  • C. 1,500
  • D. You stopped counting at 1,625

Back to what it’s like to live in the Center City, at least from a recruiter’s perspective.

The 2018 estimate was that 32,300 residents call Uptown home. Projections call for the population in Uptown and Southend to exceed 40,000 by the end of next year 2020!

The population has grown more than 30% since 2010. What’s amazing to me is that the number of residents with degrees has grown by 61%.

Also this:

  • There’s been a 95% growth in residents ages 18 to 24.
  • And a 77% jump in residents ages 25 to 34 since 2010.

We all know the number of apartments is growing at a fast clip. There are 4,254 units under construction in the Center City and an extra 3,603 units planned.

The most startling statistic has to do with the hotel demand that’s increased in the Center City. There are 1,206 rooms under construction and 1,124 rooms are in the planning stages.

Six, SIX, SIX new hotel completions in 2019! When all that’s planned is complete, the Center City will have 7,900 rooms. This will be a whopping 73% increase in supply over 2015.

That is a lot free continental breakfast. How do they know if I am a guest or not?

My client gave Uptown a thumbs-up on tech talent. Tech employment has grown by 58 percent since 2012, which placed Charlotte as No. 1 on compTIA’s list for top cities for tech workers. Another thumbs-up from the client for hospitality, arts, and sports options.

And I’d never leave you hanging. Here are the answers to the pop quiz:

Question 1, C. 114,000.

Question 2, B. $33.50 (but keep in mind that you need to add parking to this number. You can assume $175/mo. pp)

Question 3, B 1,240