Region residents invited to help plan area's future

​County forums will examine four growth options

Feb. 27, 2014 -- Four distinct growth options for the 14 counties making up the greater Charlotte region will be considered at county forums scheduled in March.
The options for change over the next 40 years have been created from input gathered from residents, local governments, businesses and others over the past 18 months through the CONNECT Our Future initiative.
"We're in the homestretch of listening to residents across the region to create a shared growth plan for our future," said Michael Johnson, Statesville mayor pro tem and board chair of Centralina Council of Governments, which is coordinating the initiative, along with the Catawba Regional Council of Governments in South Carolina. 
From input gathered at the forums, CONNECT Our Future will develop a preferred growth option that produces the long-term outcomes the region most values. Results will be shared throughout the region this summer.
"Our hope is that CONNECT Our Future information will be helpful to area governments as they address the rapid growth anticipated for the area - another 1.8 million people and 860,000 jobs by 2050," Johnson said.
The CONNECT Our Future initiative will hold an open forum from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Davis Theatre at the Historic Cabarrus County Courthouse, 65 Union Street South, Concord. If residents want to attend a brief presentation, they will be held at 10:15, 12:15 and 2:15.
At the forums, after reviewing the four growth options, residents will share thoughts through an online, interactive website or complete a written questionnaire.  If they choose to attend short presentations at 10:15, 12:15 and 2:15 residents will vote with a keypad during the presentation.
Additionally, residents can consider the options and give their opinions online at after March 6.
Over 4,000 area residents have already participated in 160 other CONNECT Our Future events to date, including open houses, small groups, community growth workshops and RealityCheck 2050, a day-long visioning session.  The CONNECT Our Future effort is funded in part by a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
To register to attend a forum and for more information on CONNECT Our Future, go to