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Nooze Hounds: Joi Mayo Is Transforming Nations Ford

Episode 87

Joi Mayo sits in a cafeteria laughing with other community members
Joi Mayo (second from right) at a Transforming Nations Ford event discussing community needs on a parcel of city-owned land on the corridor. (Photo courtesy of Transforming Nations Ford)

On episode 87 of the Nooze Hounds podcast, I spoke with Joi Mayo, president of the Kings Creek Association, about her work with Transforming Nations Ford, a coalition of community organizers advocating for southwest Charlotte’s 28273, 28277, 28217, and 28210 zip codes along the Nations Ford/Arrowood Road corridors.

“The vision of Transforming Nations Ford is to create environments that empower individuals to reach their full potential while fostering a deep sense of belonging and interconnectedness,” Mayo says. “Our ultimate goal is to inspire lasting positive change, ensuring that every member of the Nations Ford/Arrowood corridor can thrive and contribute meaningfully to the collective well-being of our community.”

Mayo and other area organizers, including with the Southwest Area Neighborhood Coalition, are currently lobbying Charlotte City Council to help turn a piece of city-owned land into a community center. The parcel, located at 7600 England Street off East Arrowood Road, was donated to the city in 2020, and for years neighbors have been asking that the city do something useful with the property.

On March 19, Mayo & Co. kicked off the Transforming Nations Ford movement with a Design Challenge event at South Academy International Language. 

“The consensus was clear,” Mayo later wrote in an email. “Our community desperately needs a place where youth can thrive, gather, and engage in positive activities. The proposed vision includes amenities such as basketball courts, soccer fields, a playground, a pavilion, and meeting spaces for residents. This space fosters community bonds and provides recreational opportunities for all ages.” 

They’re asking that the city consider selling a portion of the parcel to Mecklenburg County for a nominal fee of $1 to be turned into a park. 

Joi Mayo looks on while Virginia Keough, founder and president of the Southwest Area Neighborhood Coalition, speaks at a recent Transforming Nations Ford event.
Joi Mayo (left) looks on while Virginia Keough, founder and president of the Southwest Area Neighborhood Coalition, speaks at a recent Transforming Nations Ford event. (Photo courtesy of Transforming Nations Ford)

“This gesture would demonstrate a commitment to prioritizing the needs of our community over profit margins, ensuring that vital resources are allocated where they are needed most,” she wrote. 

On the podcast, we discuss the recent work that has seen these neighbors intensify their efforts to have their voices heard. We also discuss a history of not being at the table, including when their neighborhoods were left out of the Corridors of Opportunity program in 2022.

Other topics of discussion include the recent expansion of ourBRIDGE for KIDS into the area, the launch of Alternatives to Violence along the corridor, and upcoming improvements to Archdale Park following years of calls for renovations by neighbors.

Follow the Transforming Nations Ford movement on Instagram and on Facebook. Find the group’s petition here.

Read more: New Alternatives to Violence Team Launches on West Boulevard

 

Remember you can catch us on Spotify and other places where you find podcasts, and be sure to check out Queen City Podcast Network for a slew of other great Charlotte podcasts that aren’t quite as good as ours but pretty damn close. Find past Nooze Hounds episodes here.


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