MINT HILL – Commissioners are more than pleased with the work the board completed this past year in Mint Hill as they begin to move onto new projects for the coming year.
Residents in Mint Hill saw the completion of the new town hall kick off the year, followed by the move of the Mint Hill Police Department to the old town hall, the beginning of many sidewalk improvements, the completion of the Korean War Memorial at Mint Hill’s Veterans Park and more in 2013 without an increase in taxes.
“We did the sidewalks, we finished the Korean Memorial, changed the name of the park and businesses coming in – it’s slow but it’s happening,” Commissioner Lloyd Austin said. “I think we are still keeping the vision of what the people who incorporated the town (wanted), I think we still have a similar vision to what they had to be a small town and be different than Charlotte.”
Commissioners made sure this year’s projects were completed without taking on debt. The new town hall and police department, as well as the sidewalks, were paid for through Mint Hill’s fund balance. Final estimates show the town hall construction cost about $6.5 million, and the renovations for the police department were about $1.8 million.
“It was really a nice project for the new town hall and the police department. Those were the two things that really stood out in the year 2013,” Commissioner Carl “Mickey” Ellington said.
Although there are no town hall-sized projects on the docket for the coming year, commissioners plan to continue working to improve Mint Hill for residents, while maintaining the small-town feel the community wants, Austin said. And sidewalks are at the forefront.
The town completed the first phase of sidewalk improvements this year and is currently under way on the second phase, adding a total of 10 sections of sidewalks throughout town. After the completion of current projects, which were financed with Powell Bill funds from the North Carolina Department of Transportation, commissioners plan to add more sidewalk improvements to the list.
“We’ve got quite a bit of sidewalks that will be continued to be put in,” Ellington said.
As far as larger-scale projects, there aren’t any plans set in stone, but commissioners hope to get the ball rolling on the Bridges at Mint Hill project that Austin said will bring in more tax revenue for the town, allowing for more projects without an increase in taxes for the residents.
“As that mall comes up, that’s going to be a huge impact on this town,” he said. “I think it’s going to be way more than most people realize. I think within the next couple of years that mall will get under way.”
According to Austin, developers are currently finding it difficult to recruit tenants for the mall, which will be located on Lawyers Road near Interstate 485.
The Mint Hill Board of Commissioners will say goodbye to eight-year member Brenda McRae on Thursday, Dec. 12, during the 7 p.m. meeting, and will swear in the new board, including new member Richard “Fig” Newton.
The meeting will take place at the Mint Hill Town Hall, 4430 Mint Hill Village Lane.