Land Use


 Source: Sustain Charlotte's 2014 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Sustainability Report Card


Key Fact

Mecklenburg County lost 33% of its tree canopy and 3% of its open space between 1985 and 2008, and has only half the parkland per person compared to the national average. Source: Urban Ecosystem Analysis Mecklenburg County and the City of Charlotte, 2010; Mecklenburg County Parks and Recreation Department.

Additional Resources

The Queen's Crown

Our Vision for Land Use

By 2030, we envision a region in which...

  • Citizens and their elected leaders understand the connection between a healthy environment, land use decisions, and quality of life.
  • Stronger, more comprehensive land use plans exist with the goals of social equity and environmental protection in addition to economic growth.
  • Citizens and their elected leaders fully value parks, trees, greenways and nature preserves within their communities and are actively involved in caring for and preserving them.
  • A system of parks, greenways, and trails exists that connect neighborhoods, provide recreation and an alternative mode of travel, protect environmentally sensitive areas, and preserve water quality.
  • Acres of parkland per person meets or exceeds the national average.
  • 5,000 acres of wildlife habitat, 10,000 acres of productive farmland, and 15,000 acres of natural buffer lands along priority waterways have been conserved.
  • 1,000 miles of the Carolina Thread Trail has been established on 10,000 acres of connected parklands, buffers, and nature preserves.
  • Our tree canopy exceeds 50% of the land cover, and tree ordinances exist that require tree canopy in all types of public and private development, prevent further tree canopy loss, and maintain tree health.
  • Open/green space will be well distributed throughout the region so that it can be easily accessed by all residents.
  • New development takes place near existing development or on previously developed sites (re-development). 
  • Existing infrastructure is used more efficiently and existing buildings are repurposed.
  • Mixed income and green housing is available in every neighborhood.

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