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Q and A with Blake Davidson

by Jennifer Garner

July 5,2006

Why do you think Charlotte was chosen for the Hall of Fame?

Charlotte was chosen based upon a number of factors. First and foremost Charlotte had a great plan. Stability, sustainability and "renewability" were all critical components that had to be addressed and we felt Charlotte most effectively accomplished all three of those. Charlotte was also unique in its ability to position itself as "NASCAR's Hollywood" or like Nashville is the home to country music, Charlotte has been "unofficially" the home to the NASCAR industry from the beginning. With most of the NASCAR industry based in and around the Charlotte region, we envision drivers, team members, team owners and legends of the sport being at the NASCAR Hall of Fame on a regular basis. This is something that was really only feasible in Charlotte.

What will the Hall of Fame bring to the non-race fan in Charlotte?

The NASCAR Hall of Fame will be a wonderful attraction for the most passionate fans, those that are new to the sport and those "fans-in-waiting." The Hall of Fame will obviously represent rich traditions and the history of the sport, but it will do so in an engaging and entertaining manner. The NASCAR Hall of Fame will have some museum-like aspects and qualities, but it will be an entertainment attraction as much as anything. We believe visitors to the city and locals that may not be NASCAR fans today will have a very compelling experience. We feel confident that they will come away with a new appreciation for the sport and certainly have an enjoyable time.

How will the Hall of Fame design and location impact the Center City?

The NASCAR Hall of Fame is being designed by world-renown architect, PEI, COBB, FREED & Partners; so right away Center City will have a new asset that it can be very proud of. The building itself will be a landmark that is sure to be part of any Center City tour. The location of the NASCAR Hall of Fame, at the corner of 2nd and Brevard streets, will draw more people to that part of Center City than ever before. A "stroll" district will be created that connects the NASCAR Hall of Fame to the Bobcats Arena, which will create additional opportunities for retail and entertainment, making the Center City more vibrant.

Are there any activities or events that Charlotte can expect from NASCAR before the site is complete?

There will be ground-breaking ceremony for sure, which will likely come in the Spring of 2007. As milestones are reached during the construction and design phase, there will most assuredly be other opportunities on the site. However, it will be a very busy place as development team works to get the NASCAR Hall of Fame opened by early 2010 at the latest.

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