Charlotte, North Carolina reigns supreme as the Southland’s ‘Queen City’. Named after the wife of King George III, Charlotte grew from a quaint village to a major city after the discovery of a 17-pound gold nugget here in 1799. Charlotte remained the gold capitol of the U.S. until theCalifornia Gold Rush of the mid 1800’s. Today’s Charlotte is the second largest financial center in the nation and the 21st largest city. The Bank of America building has a crown incorporated into its design, celebrating the ‘Queen City’ and its heritage. A contemporary city that reveres its historical traditions, Charlotte, NC blends a unique mixture of modern innovations and proud past.
Situated at the intersection of the nation’s two largest railways, Norfolk Southern and CSX Transportation, and near the junction of Interstates 77 and 85, Charlotte is a vital distribution hub. The Carolina Piedmont Region is the nation’s fourth largest manufacturing district. The Charlotte Metropolitan Area contains more than 2,000 manufacturing firms. With early beginnings as a major textile producer, today’s Charlotte holds state of the art firms specializing in precision technology, making metals, plastics and chemicals. The biomedical field and electronics industry are rapidly growing, and an increasing number of international firms have discovered Charlotte, with more than 480 foreign-owned companies found here. Seven Fortune 500 firms call Charlotte, NC home.
The largest city found between Atlanta and Washington DC, Charlotte is the number one travel destination in the Carolinas. Visitors come to enjoy the aesthetic beauty of the elegantly landscaped streets and the fine array of cultural and sports activities. No matter how large Charlotte grows, it retains the reputation of extending gracious Southern charm and small town hospitality to all. The Charlotte International Airport is one of the major air transportation hubs in the U.S.
The arts and cultural entertainment opportunities abound in Charlotte, and attract almost 3 million visitors annually. The Blumenthal Performing Arts Center and a wealth of symphonies and orchestras, give nightly performances. The Mint Museum, the Discovery Place, and theLevine Museum of the New South are just a few of the many museums that preserve North Carolina’s heritage. Sports enthusiasts delight in Charlotte, the base for the Carolina Panthers, the WNBA Charlotte Sting and the newly formed Bobcats. Lowe’s Motor Speedwayhosts three major NASCAR Nextel Cup events, along with year-round stock-car racing.
Census 2000 reported Charlotte’s population as almost 541,000. The surrounding metro area, which extends beyond the borders of Mecklenburg County, claims more than 2 million residents. Growth increased more than 37% since 1990. Between 1995 and 2000, Charlotte attracted the nation’s 3rd-largest increase in young professionals under 40. The median age is 33. Charlotte citizens enjoy fine weather year-round, with mild winter and summer temperatures, and stunning spring and fall foliage. Twenty-three colleges and universitiesserve the Charlotte area, providing excellent educational opportunities for residents.
Charlotte, North Carolina consistently receives awards and citations. Voted as one of the top 10 Best Places to Live, (Money Magazine), Charlotte ranked in the top 20 Best Cities for Women (Ladies Home Journal ) and Best Cities for Black Families (BET). Forbes Magazineranked Charlotte among the Best Places to be Single, and Expansion Management selected it as one of America’s Hottest Cities for Business and Relocation. Charlotte, NC, the ‘Queen City’, continues to earn her royal crown.