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Report Predicts $5.6B Annual Impact By River District Development

The River District, a planned mixed-use community west of Charlotte-Douglas International Airport, will eventually generate $5.6B in new annual economic output, according to an economic study released recently by GAI Consultants.


Crescent Communities and Lincoln Harris plan to develop the 1,400-acre mixed-use community over three decades. The development will be one of the largest master planned communities ever built in Charlotte.

The independent economic impact study also concluded that the River District’s economic output will be largely associated with the creation of more than 51,000 new permanent jobs and $2.9B in new direct and indirect wages connected with the district. About 7,000 construction jobs will be created as well.

Over a 30-year period, the city of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County are expected to realize nearly $1B in revenue from The River District. That will mostly result from the creation of a new tax base of more than $2.7B (in constant 2016 dollars).

Crescent Communities' Brian Leary

"What the study shows, and what's been proven across the country through other public-private partnerships, is that the public sector can catalyze significant returns for public benefit when the private sector has the necessary infrastructure to support mixed-use communities," Crescent Communities’ Commercial/Mixed-Use Business President Brian Leary said. 

The River District, near the airport and I-485 and along the Catawba River, is outside of Charlotte city limits but will be annexed, bringing additional services to the area, including water and sewer utilities. 

The River District will eventually feature residential units, hotels, office buildings and retail. About 550 acres, or 40% of the total acreage, will be preserved for greenways, parks, trails, open spaces and recreation.