Thomas Polk Park, located at the corner of Trade Street and Tryon Street, is getting a new look and a new name, according to this week’s city council meeting agenda. The park is currently named after Thomas Polk, a Confederate soldier who was also the great-uncle of the 11th President of the United States, James K. Polk.
The Polk Partnership Framework will work with Charlotte Center City Partners and civic leaders to complete the park’s redesign.
According to the meeting agenda, the city will contribute approximately $350,000 to the park’s demolition. Plans to redesign the park have been years in the making as the city tried to find a funding partner.
The renovated park would fix issues such as an overgrown landscape, lack of adequate lighting and an inoperable water feature.
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Why it matters: Thomas Polk Park’s renaming comes eight months after the renaming of Stonewall Street, which honored Stonewall Jackson, a Confederate general who fought to preserve slavery.
It is currently unknown what Thomas Polk Park’s new name will be.
City officials will hear from the public tonight on whether or not to change the terms of the Mayor and Councilmembers from two years to four years, adding another district and staggering election terms.
A month ago, the city voted to “adopt a resolution of intent” to make term changes. According to a Jan. 3 committee meeting, the council must decide by Aug. 28, 70 days before Nov. 7, the next election date allowed by law.
City Council will also share updates on social districts. Updates could include responses on whether Plaza Midwood and other areas will be approved as social districts.
Other items on tonight’s agenda include updates on SAFE Charlotte and CATS.
In response to rising crime rates, the city introduced the SAFE Charlotte initiative, a program to re-imagine policing and make the city safer.
The CATS update comes days after the announcement that CATS Chief Operating Officer Allen Smith was placed on administrative leave without pay.