The site of Charlotte’s Eastland Mall, once the state’s largest before it closed in 2010, may soon be home to David Tepper’s new Major League Soccer franchise and a mixed-use campus including residential units, according to a rezoning petition filed with Charlotte City Council.
The billionaire hedge fund manager and owner of the Carolina Panthers NFL team is eying the location for a 78-acre development that includes a team office, soccer-training complex and residential units. About 69 acres are owned by the city, and the site was included as part of the city’s proposal to MLS commissioner Don Garber when securing the franchise. The city also pledged $110 million in hospitality funds as part of the deal.
The once-thriving mall site has previously been considered for a movie studio, recreational space and residential development. Currently, about 11 of the total 80 acres are owned by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools.
The latest proposal for the MLS headquarters includes:
- A mixed-use district with retail, restaurant and commercial space and a pedestrian-friendly Main Street with walkable streetscape
- As many as 1,050 single and multi-family residential units
- Two acres of parks and green space
- A soccer-training complex with multiple fields and multiuse pathways to a facility for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools
- Lighting and signage for sports and entertainment use
- Parking areas
The city of Charlotte and local real estate-investment firm Crosland are the petitioners for the rezoning. A public question and comment meeting will be held May 12 at 5 p.m.
While Tepper is working on his latest sports franchise in Charlotte, he’s also overseeing the Carolina Panthers’ headquarters move to South Carolina. He received a $160 million incentive package from the state to move the HQ to Rock Hill, S.C., and the York County Council approved $225 million in local government spending to develop the site, which will be covered by redirected tax revenue from the Panthers. In return, Tepper committed to a $500 million investment and is adding 150 jobs in the county.