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It was the welcoming party The West Side has been waiting for - proof that attracting the right business can create a lot of buzz.
The popular No Grease Barbershop chain opened a store today in Mosaic Village, a $16 million dollar project on West Trade owned by Johnson C. Smith University.
"It's like new energy coming over here on this side of town now, and we're just glad to be a part of it," said No Grease employee Omar Lanier.
JCSU President Ronald Carter is pretty pleased too. He was full of praise for No Grease's owners, and the boost they're giving Mosaic.
"The dream, the vision lives in concrete terms," Carter said. "I walked through those doors with deep appreciation to Jermaine and Damien Johnson for their ability to really see what could be possible along this corridor."
"No grease is the paper champ," added a modest Jermaine Johnson. "These people - the community - they're the real winners here."
But the community has long felt like anything but. The West side of town, where JCSU sits, is underdeveloped compared to other parts of Charlotte. And Carter says he's had to fight for city investment.
"There are people who really don't want to see this corridor thrive," Carter said.
He says what this area needs to truly transform - a streetcar. But that's been incredibly controversial.
"I am convinced that it will happen," Carter said. "It must happen for the common good of this city."
Carter even had a mural painted on the side of Mosaic depicting one.
"I think this will be the start of something good," said Damien Johnson.