Bond Financial Budget
Trivium Corporate Center is a 270-acre Class A business park, located between Robinwood Road and Startown Road, which is being jointly developed by the City of Hickory, Catawba County, and the EDC. Formerly known as Park 1764, Trivium Corporate Center is zoned for office and light industrial, and will be marketed by the EDC as an ideal location for corporate headquarters and advanced manufacturing, due to its convenient location. The name, Trivium Corporate Center, was selected to convey the industrial park’s modern facilities and advanced capabilities. The Latin word trivium means “the place where three roads meet,” which reflects the location of the Corporate Center at the intersection of I-40, Hwy 70, and Hwy 321, as well as its approved strapline, “Making. Working. Better.”
The City Walk, which runs along Main Avenue from Lenoir-Rhyne University through Downtown Hickory to 11th Street NW and up to Old Lenoir Road (future OLLE Art Walk), will continue the growth of company headquarters and professional jobs in the City’s central business district.
Businesses have already invested over $30 million in new entertainment, headquarters, and retail shops along Main Avenue between Lenoir-Rhyne University and Downtown Hickory. Great local companies, like Moretz Enterprises, Hollar Mill, Lenoir-Rhyne University, Transportation Insight, and Cornerstone United have invested and added jobs. One North Center, a $19 million mixed-use development directly along the City Walk path, opened in 2021 to expand downtown living opportunities.
By building a City Walk that will allow employees to easily connect to the university, shops, services, and their offices, as well as being a great place for all residents to enjoy, the City feels it can continue to attract company headquarters, as well as service and professional jobs, to the central business district to create a place where young adults want to work, live, and play.
The Riverwalk, which will be developed from Geitner Park along the river, will spur new retail jobs and residential growth. Many of the communities with which Hickory competes for jobs and people have found ways to make their water a competitive asset. Hickory is blessed with a wonderful lake and river, but the community has not yet used the lake for economic development.
By building a Riverwalk from the planned overhaul of Geitner Park, which will be privately developed by the Robert Lackey family, the City will create a unique destination in the region. This will provide public access to the lake and an attractive area for shopping, entertainment, and residential development.
The Streetscapes and Gateways projects are designed to improve the City’s major roads and gateways, which are the main entrances to the City. The major roadways throughout the City are where many businesses want to locate. Some of the businesses have already invested millions of dollars (i.e. Mike Johnson Toyota, Nissan of Hickory, Holiday Inn Select, Lowes Foods, Walmart Neighborhood Market, 29 North Apartments, and Lowes Home Improvement in Viewmont), and others will make investments and add jobs as the City improves its major roadways. The roadways and gateways are also the “curb appeal” of the City. Improvements will benefit all travelers, encourage private investment, and show prospective business and residents that Hickory is vibrant and well maintained.
The current Gateway plan consists of an artistic leaf structure, along with landscaping, at Highway 321 and 70. The other Gateway will be placed at Lenoir-Rhyne Boulevard and Interstate 40. Amec Foster Wheeler was hired to design the gateway at Highway 321 and Highway 70. That design was completed in 2017 and approved by City Council. The LR Blvd. I-40 Gateway has not been designed yet.
First identified as a project in the City’s Inspiring Spaces Plan, the Historic Ridgeview Walk (formerly referred to as Book Walk) will be a multiuse pathway providing pedestrian and bicycle connectivity from the City Walk in Downtown Hickory, through the Ridgeview community, to U.S. 70.
In October 2019, City Council approved and accepted an agreement for professional services with Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc. for design services related to the Historic Ridgeview Walk project.
On December 6, 2018, the City of Hickory was awarded a $17 million Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) Transportation Discretionary Grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT). In addition to funding a 1.2-mile complete streetscape loop in Downtown Hickory as part of the Hickory Trail, the BUILD grant will fund a pedestrian bridge over U.S. 321 and an approximately 1.7-mile bicycle and pedestrian trail that will travel by L.P. Frans Stadium, home of the Hickory Crawdads baseball team, and up to the Hickory Regional Airport. This multiuse path will be called the Aviation Walk.