Nov. 6 will mark a pivotal date in Mint Hill history. I’m not trying to hype the midterm elections, but remind residents about the $18 million bond referendums on the bottom of the ballot.
Residents can vote yes or no on the following:
- A $3 million public facility bond to convert the historic Bain Academy building into a public cultural arts center.
- A $15 million parks and recreation bond to enhance athletics facilities on Brief Road and Veterans Memorial Park.
Essentially, you’re deciding if Mint Hill should dive deeper into parks, recreation and cultural arts.
I think you should. Both bonds seem like solid investments to me.
Other communities have made similar investments.
Cornelius voters approved $9.3 million in bonds in 2013 that would create an art-focused town center, amphitheater, greenways and other things. Harrisburg voters OK’ed $21 million in bonds in 2017 that include adding a community center, amphitheater and athletic fields to a key park.
Parks, recreation and cultural programming add value to communities. They improve the quality of life for families by providing affordable things to do without having to hop on a highway and get cut off by a dozen drivers on your way to Charlotte.
The parks and recreation bond in particular is of significance because there’s economic development potential with the addition of a 2,500-seat baseball stadium at Veterans Park. The town already recruited one interested party in Alain Lillie. He wants to bring a summer collegiate baseball team to Mint Hill.
The stadium will also attract tournaments, which will bring in youth and families from out of town. They’ll spend money at local restaurants and businesses.
Then there’s the potential for larger-scale concerts, festivals and events.
Charlotte grows by a few dozen people each day and isn’t expected to stop for many years. The city’s growth will create development pressure for all nearby communities, no matter how much they resist.
A lot of people will be drawn to the small-town feel of communities like Mint Hill. Amenities like the baseball stadium, athletic fields and a renovated Bain Academy will help attract higher quality development.
Most important, they’ll bring the community together.