The Winn-Dixie at Charlotte‘s Amity Gardens Shopping Center opened in November of 1958, right in the middle of the most thriving retail strip in the city. The center also included Woolworth’s and a Barclay Cafeteria. By 1961, it also included Charlotte’s first (and only) branch of Clark’s, an early “supercenter” with both general merchandise and groceries.
By the 1980s, the center was already in significant decline, and the conversion of Independence Boulevard into a freeway sealed the fate not only of Amity Gardens, but of the entire retail strip from downtown to Albemarle Road. The old center is still standing today, more or less completely abandoned. Plans to demolish it and construct a Wal-Mart Supercenter are on hold. The years have not been kind to this once booming area.
CCJanuary 30, 2010 at 7:51am
I grew up in the neighboorhood that most supported the shopping center. Really hate to see it go & all the traffic from a Wal-mart start. The area has been subjected to so much change, as has the rest of the city. Charlotte is notirious for destroying its history. Maybe someday Charlotte will see how important its history was and have many regrets.
Many homeowners in the neighborhood are original owners, its still a good neighborhood, lets hope Wal-Mart doesn’t destroy another section.
AnthonyFebruary 13, 2010 at 12:03am
I am a home owner in the neighborhood directly beind the old shopping center, and unlike “CC” still live there. Yes it has been a shame to see it decline to nothing over the years but I am excited to hear talks of a super Wal-Mart to move in and revitalize the neighborhood. We need this tremendously. People things change, Charlotte is growing into a city. Yes Wal-Mart will bring traffic (something southerners dispise) but it will also bring jobs, shopping, millions in tax dollars, and advertisement for a forgotten neighborhood. This will help property values. I hope that they due tear down the awful eye soar and breath life into an almost dead area. Please Wal-Mart come and help my community.
GroceteriaFebruary 13, 2010 at 10:35am
Note: Groceteria is a site about supermarket HISTORY. Further comments that do not relate specifically to the HISTORY of this store or center will not be approved. Thanks.
C CrossMarch 27, 2012 at 6:21pm
I am CC & I still live in Amity Gardens & Wal-Mart will bring jobs to the area which is good, however, it has brought so much more traffic. I also was glad to see the worn down shopping center go – who wouldn’t, but its all the rest of the problems that come with so much more traffic in our peaceful neighborhood. It WILL bring our property value down & the area will be subject to more crime. This area has always been very low on the list of any crime activity, in the 56 years I have lived here. Not sure why its thought that only the “Southerners” do not want more traffic, maybe because our neighborhood streets now seem like a raceway!