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Eastland falling as film meetings start (access required)

The Eastland Mall demolition itself may be procedural, but as the walls fall on a mall that was once one of the most popular shopping destinations in the city, it’s not hard to picture the transition from debris to development. The city is now one step closer to that possible development, as it held the first meeting on Wednesday with Studio Charlotte Development to discuss the company’s proposal to build a film studio complex on the 80-acre Central Avenue site.

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Lights! Camera! Eastland? City Council starts negotiations with movie studio developer (access required)

Lights! Camera! Eastland? City Council starts negotiations with movie studio developer <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/10/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

CHARLOTTE – The City Council voted unanimously Monday night to begin negotiations with a movie studio developer to redevelop Eastland Mall. Studio Charlotte Development, led by CEO Bert Hesse, has emerged as the city’s preliminary choice for the redevelopment, even if the choice was more by default.

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Act II, Scene I: City expected to start negotiating with film studio over development at abandoned mall (access required)

Act II, Scene I: City expected to start negotiating with film studio over development at abandoned mall <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/10/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

The city’s Economic Development Committee last week made a decision that increased the likelihood of an ambitious $300 million film studio being built on the East Side. The committee, which includes Mayor Pro Tem Patrick Cannon and City Council members Warren Cooksey, David Howard, LaWana Mayfield, and James Mitchell, will recommend on Aug. 26 that the full City Council vote to enter into a memorandum of understanding with Studio Charlotte Development, starting exclusive negotiations with the company.

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ARK Ventures withdraws from Eastland Mall redevelopment

Charlotte-based ARK Ventures, which developed the N.C. Music Factory, on Tuesday informed the city that the company no longer wished to be considered for the planned redevelopment of the former mall on Central Avenue.

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Commercial Confidential: the former Eastland Mall (access required)

Commercial Confidential: the former Eastland Mall <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/10/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Since the Charlotte City Council voted in August to buy Eastland Mall – and even prior to the official purchase – rumors have flown around the Queen City about the future of the once-great, now-derelict mall. Would it become a subdivision or residential development? Possibly a film studio? Many in Charlotte were quick to say they thought the old mall would continue to sit, blighted, on Central Avenue.

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Charlotte plans to demolish Eastland Mall (access required)

Charlotte plans to demolish Eastland Mall <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/10/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

With little fanfare, the city has decided to squash the hollow shell of Eastland Mall, in response to the perceived needs of the two developers who have been shortlisted to remake the 80-acre site. But Bert Hesse, CEO of Studio Charlotte Development, one of the developers considered for Eastland redevelopment, said city officials would be smart to hold off on the demolition, adding that, in doing so, they could save some money and possibly a piece of the storied mall.

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