More diverse businesses needed on the West Side - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

More diverse businesses needed on the West Side

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

Neighbors say they want more diversity along Beatties Ford Road near Johnson C. Smith University when it comes to businesses.  It appears only certain types of stores are setting up shop.

"You do need something besides the atypical things you see on challenged corridors like these," Charlotte Mayor ProTem Patrick Cannon said. "Something like a Dean and Deluca and or McAlister's Deli. You want to see those things happen."

Business owners agree. Damian Johnson co-owns No Grease Barbershop.  He opened up his barbershop in Mosaic Village. Mosaic Village is along Beatties Ford Road and has space for several more stores to move in. No Grease was the first to open in the village. 

"It can definitely be more diverse over here," Johnson said. "But that's why we are here to create some momentum."

Johnson says diverse stores are scheduled to open up soon in the village but thinks the city can do a better job to continue and create more diversity.

"The leaders of Charlotte have to get behind," Johnson said. "Really promoting, marketing and pushing businesses on this side of town."

Charlotte Mayor ProTem Patrick Cannon says he has approached several businesses about moving to the section along Beatties Ford Road.   This is what he said happened.

"It was quiet as quiet can be," Cannon said. "And I think largely in part is they hadn't been approached about how they can engage and what it takes - like what's going on in other parts of the country."

Cannon says there is money available to lure businesses to that part of the city. The money could be used to help future tenants with their costs so prices can stay down for the consumer.

"If you are able to keep the rents down," Mayor Pro Tem said.  "A cup of coffee or that sub, doesn't cost you as much on this side of town as it would on the south side of town."

Cannon says he will look into getting more businesses to check out space along Beatties Ford Road, while neighbors say the more diverse the businesses are the better their community will be.

"Anything that can draw business from coffee shops," Johnson said. "To restaurants, to clothing stores - everything that every other side of town has."

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