Charlotte Rescue Mission plans to preserve history during $25 million transformation


CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – The Charlotte Rescue Mission is in the midst of a capital campaign to transform its men’s shelter that sits just outside uptown. The mission doesn’t plan to leave its current location and leaders say there are two reasons for that.

Right now the shelter is very easy to find at the corner of West 1st and Cedar Street. The building also has a lot of Charlotte history, dating back to long before the rescue mission moved in.

“I believe Charlotte Rescue Mission is a downtown rescue mission,” said Rev. Anthony Marciano II.

The title of a downtown rescue mission will remain for years to come as $25 million is being raised to remodel the century-old campus.

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The complex of buildings off Cedar Street near Bank of America Stadium was first built in 1910 when Southern Spindle & Flyer Company moved manufacturing to Charlotte.

Upon close inspection of the buildings today you can find traces of another business that set up shop here, the Standard Oil Company (known today as Exxon Mobile).

“They would deliver oil to all the spinning factories in Charlotte. History says they kept mules in the yard, which is our volleyball court today. If you look at our maintenance shop hay would be lifted up to be stored in the barn,” said Marciano.

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The barn is now called The Rebound Shop and it will stay, but other buildings that are showing their age will come down.

“Over the 6 years of ownership we have made this building functional,” said Marciano.

You can only remodel a 100-year-old building so many times. The men’s shelter lacks space, which became an eye-opening problem during the pandemic when there was a COVID-19 cluster among residents.

“The pandemic just accelerated our thinking process and I said let’s do it, even in the middle of a pandemic,” said Marciano.

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After nearly two years of living life in the pandemic, the new renderings of the building show how the modern makeover will give the most vulnerable men in our community a sense of hope.

“Think about this. In the first 3 minutes of entering Charlotte Rescue Mission they will be shown dignity and respect, possibly something they have not experienced in a very long time,” said Marciano.

At last check, the capital campaign has raised about 42% of the $25 million goal. The money raised is from support from private donors like Truist bank and Harvey Gantt.

Public donations just opened up last week. You can learn more by clicking here.

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