Plans continue for a reimagined Latta Place, formerly Latta Plantation, slated to open in 2023

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) — Plans are underway to reopen Latta Place, formerly known as Latta Plantation in Huntersville.

In 2021, Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation leaders elected not to renew the lease with Historic Latta Inc., the group that operates it.

It came after an employee of Historic Latta Inc. promoted a June 19 event from the perspective of a slave owner, sparking public outrage. The employee continued to double down on his decision after the backlash.

The social media post promoted an event for Juneteenth called “Kingdom Coming”, and said the event would take place through the eyes of slave owners. He referred to them as “supervisors” and “white refugees” who were “unemployed”.

“It was not in line with the direction we were going,” W. Lee Jones, director of parks and recreation for Mecklenburg County, told WBTV.

Jones and his team are now working with a consulting firm called Design Minds to create an interpretive master plan.

“We trained this diverse community stakeholder group that includes historians, educators, agency leaders and citizens and we visited about 17 facilities in four states to see how these things are handled,” Jones said.

He says trained county employees will be the ones organizing the events.

“We are looking at descendants of slaves or descendants of indigenous people or descendants of the families who owned these facilities to come and hear about the story and contribute to it,” he said.

The planning process takes place in three phaseswhich includes improving existing structures and opening up the site in portions.

Project manager Liz Morrell sees this as an opportunity to flip the narrative.

“To see how this could be a great asset to the community and provide a space for really important conversations, for education,” Morrell said. “The programming and experiences we offer there will have implications for today.”

The team is in phase two right now, which includes community engagement.

They will share information on how you can lend your voice to the conversation at upcoming events and you can also give your opinion online on this link.

Related: Charlotte-area plantation is renamed ‘Place’ months after controversial racist event led to its closure

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