Charlotte martial arts business says it’s getting kicked in the butt

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Leadership Martial Arts on South Tryon is full of excitement and determination. It’s what they teach and it’s the way they run their small business. And with their small family owned business booming, owner Derek Richardson and his wife Jodi decided the current studio was just too small. Last fall, plans were made and construction began on a brand new building just down the street, and today, it’s done, but it’s empty.


Derek, feeling frustrated, says, “The building was finished two months ago.”


We asked, “And you were supposed to move in when?”


“Two months ago. In fact we don’t know when we are moving in,” replied Derek. Jodi says, “It’s very difficult staying here, especially since we have a larger space not being utilized right now.”


The holdup is frustrating. A sewer line they need to connect up to is within sight, and in fact it’s right down there, just 100 feet away.  Derek told us that NCDOT told his contractor they were worried fearing someone digging too close to the sidewalk and the road might damage the surface of Tryon, and digging too far the other way is private property, so the whole project got bogged down in red tape. All the while, Derek and his wife are paying for both locations, one too small, the other, too empty.


Derek says, “We haven’t been on the receiving end of anyone helping us grow our small business, it’s just been one road block after another.”


After Derek and his wife reached out to me, I called on CMUD to see if they could speed anything up considering this small business owner was getting financially kicked in the… bottom.


CMUD responded telling me that engineering-wise, it is a “complicated situation” and that they are “working to get service established as quickly as possible.”


Just this week, good news arrived. Derek tells me that DOT has approved a temporary manhole and pumping solution, which means they can finally move in when it’s done.

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