If you haven’t paid a visit to Camp North End yet, we’re here to let you know it’s about time. The adaptive reuse site has a commanding presence near Center City, with 75 acres and 1.3 million square feet of space. It is just north of Fourth Ward, near AvidXchange Music Factory and about three miles from NoDa.
The site that once made Model T cars, served as a Rite Aid distribution center and assembled Hercules missiles has been slowly transforming into a curated artists’ space with dining, retail and entertainment options.
But you have to know when to go — the area can be a bit quiet when no events are going on. Hey, quiet is ok, too — they have tire swings and Adirondack chairs; go cozy up with a good book if you miss an event.
If you’re looking for social time, however, read on to find out when and why you should visit Camp North End:
Where to go:
Camp North End, located at 1824 Statesville Ave., is divided into areas with unique names. Don’t know what it means when someone tells you to meet them at The Boileryard, the Ford Factory or The Mount? Here’s some help:
The Boileryard: Park at the first parking lot; it has a sign that says “Boileryard.” Follow the wooden staircase. Here you’ll find, from March to October, weekly Friday Night events from 5-9 p.m., and monthly Morning Markets, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. on the first Saturday each month.
The Mount: Follow the driveway past The Boileryard, look for painted doors pointing toward The Mount and park in the back parking lot. Here you’ll find the weekly Food Truck Lunch, Thursdays from 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Not to miss:
- The goats roaming the property, between Camp North End Drive and the railroad tracks. Just don’t get too close; they are behind an electric fence.
- The murals showing “innovation in Charlotte,” created by local artists.
Ford Factory: Once developed, the Ford building will have 240,000 square feet for a future tenant. For now, it is used as an event space. Check out the floors made from pieces of wood and the old bathrooms elevated in green pods so the assembly lines could pass underneath. During the Cold War, windows were covered so Soviet spy planes could not see activity in the buildings.
Gama Goat Building: This building is still being renovated, so stay tuned. It will include pedestrian passageways, creative office, retail, dining and outdoor patio space.
Camp North End is full of artists of all kinds, from hair to woodworking, murals to fashion, photography to fine arts.
Since 2016 when developer ATCO purchased the site, they have been renovating the six main buildings as well as smaller buildings into retail and office space.
They even have vintage trailers on site for rent as office space.
They removed living space items such as beds and kitchens and replaced them with built-in desks, seating and storage compartments. Each trailer is outfitted with white natural wood interiors and WiFi.
Their first Airstream tenant, Rachel Sutherland of Rachel Sutherland Communications, moved her agency from a coworking space in South End.
“As Charlotte grows, it’s refreshing to see and be part of such compelling adaptive reuse,” Sutherland said in a statement. RSC specializes in public relations, content strategy and marketing.
Here’s a look at the tenants in the brick-and-mortar spaces:
Alchemy: The Workshop is a space for independent hairdressers. “We decided to move from South End because we were able to grow our clientele to capacity within the first 18 months,” owner Kyle Gates said. “By choosing to do business with nice people that we vibe with, we can protect this incredibly happy and rewarding work environment. Being off the beaten path suits us just fine.”
BLKMRKTCLT is a photography studio that hosts headline-worthy events, including the ‘Let’s Talk Dammit’ artists’ gathering twice a month. Recently, the studio sponsored Durag Fest, full of guests wearing durags (also referred to as du-rags or duRags), which attracted international media attention.
Capitol Power Group delivers electrical and environmental products and services.
DUPP&SWAT: THE CONCEPT partners with organizations to showcase fashion, art and retail, operating in six-month installments. “We’re surrounded by those who understand the struggle and the sweet joy of tiny successes — nevermind the larger ones,” DUPP&SWAT owner Davita Galloway said. “Because of that, we literally have each other’s backs — or at least that’s the way it feels. And, that lends itself to quite a few unique collaborations.” Guest collaborators can use the space to host events, including pop-ups. Check out the new mural by John Hairston when you visit.
Game Plan is a software platform that assists athletic organizations with online education, mentorship and career services.
Goodyear Arts is a nonprofit that offers paid artists’ residencies, free studio space for alumni residents, and arts and community events, including plays and music events. Open gallery hours are on Fridays from 6-9 p.m. “I like that it’s a raw space. We can work on building it out to what we want it to be,” said Elisa Sanchez, artist in residence. “It’s full of so many creatives.”
The General’s Office was once home to General Woodward, and it now serves as developer ATCO’s Camp North End digs.
GreenLight Fund is a nonprofit that focuses on improving opportunities and mobility for low-income Charlotteans.
HoneyFi is an app that helps couples manage their finances.
Junior Achievement is a national organization that helps youths plan for future academic and economic success.
Jonathan Berkon is a Charlotte-based photographer specializing in stills, eMotions, and portrait photography.
The Littlefield Company is a team of photographers and videographers specializing in web and social storytelling.
Love146 is an international human rights organization focused on ending child trafficking and exploitation.
Prism Supply is a vintage motorcycle parts company run by brothers Jake Hindes and Zach Hindes.
Rabbu is a boutique property rental brand that offers accommodations for short-term rentals, including concierge services, furnished properties, complimentary snacks for guests and a free one-day visit to Hygge Coworking.
Silver Eye Studios is a multi-media art production, design, and installation company.
TruMark Studios represents Ally Financial’s innovation studio, which holds the prototyping and testing of new consumer banking concepts.
UmbrellaMindz is a multimedia production facility for artists, producers, and engineers.
UNYQ is a prosthetic device startup that expanded to Charlotte from San Francisco and Spain. Pronunciation guide: ‘unique’.
Wily is a design firm focused on tools and practices including “design sprints.”
These are just some of the many parts that have begun to make up Camp North End. It’s nowhere near finished; however, this project promises to be nothing short of transformative as it grows and develops over the years.