Thanks to its convenient location between the intersection of two major interstate highways - I-85 and I-77 - Charlotte is a primary point for travel links across North Carolina. Charlotte has an incredibly vast and high quality road network. The city is home to a large ring road or beltway, known locally as the ‘485’, with a circumference of 108km.There are also a number of expansive freeways which encircle the city.
Driving in Charlotte is easy and safe. Driving is on the right and road safety laws are consistently followed and enforced. Traffic is moderate, although it can get heavy depending on the time of day and the district. The two-lane highways in the east of the city can experience very heavy traffic during peak hours.
The Charlotte Area Transit System (known as CATS) is the city’s efficient public transport scheme. CATS operates a reliable bus service throughout Charlotte, as well as a city-wide rail network.
Charlotte is a famously historic city with a fascinating past. The city is home to several museums and iconic monuments. The Mint Museum is one of the biggest tourism draws. This unique cultural institution is the amalgamation of two museums, the Mint Museum Randolph and the Mint Museum Uptown. These museums have combined to exhibit some of the most impressive examples of art and design from around the world.
Another site of interest to many people in Charlotte is the Bojangles Coliseum. This 9,605 seat arena is where a large number of sporting events and local festivities or performances are held. There is often a family-friendly cultural event occurring at the coliseum, and it can be well worth finding out what’s on.
The crime rate is very low for most places in Charlotte, especially in the north, where there is very little serious crime; the most common issue is car theft, which is rare. The Charlotte-Mecklenburg police force remain visible and present throughout the city, they are never too far away and are very fast to respond in urgent situations. In case of an emergency, the police can be reached on 911.
Despite being mostly secure, some districts in Charlotte are not deemed safe and expats should avoid traveling alone in these areas by night. The Coulwood neighborhood has a much higher crime rate than the rest of the city and gang-related violence is an issue in this area. Due to this problem, a higher concentration of police has recently been issued to patrol the neighborhood. Another part of Charlotte which has problems with crime is Steele Creek. Many shops and businesses of Steele Creek have had to close down due to an increase in serious crime in recent decades.