Conveniently located on the banks of Lake Norman in the Piedmont region of North Carolina, Davidson is a small town of about 13,000 people. The city of Charlotte is only a quick drive away along Highway 77, allowing for an easy commute if needed. This cozy college town would be ideal for anyone looking for a place with a strong sense of community to call home.
Davidson was founded in 1837 with the creation of Davidson College, which was named for General William Lee Davidson, a local Revolutionary War veteran, and built on land from the Davidson family estate. In the early 20th century Davidson served as a popular shipping hub for crops, most notably cotton exports. As the growth of the textile industry continued along with that of the college, more businesses were established in town. In 1964, Duke Power finished the construction of the Cowans Ford Dam, and in turned created Lake Norman. This brought even more growth to the town and additional opportunities for business, property, and recreation. As Davidson and the surrounding region outside of Charlotte continue to expand, the town remains focused on intelligent, sustainable development while keeping its small town charm.
Lifestyle & Area Attractions
You’ll never get bored living in Davidson! Whether exploring historic Main Street’s many local shops and restaurants or cheering on the Wildcats at a Division 1 basketball game (alma mater of NBA star Steph Curry), there’s always something going on in town. Some local favorite businesses to visit include Main Street Books, Summit Coffee, and Kindred, an award-winning restaurant. Davidson neighborhoods are known for being very walker and biker friendly; those looking to learn more about the history of the town can even take the Davidson Historical District Walking Tour, a self-guided tour that usually takes about an hour. Since 1986, the beautiful campus of Davidson has been designated a national arboretum, making it a great place to take a walk and enjoy the wide variety of foliage. Another perk of living in this college town is the Davidson College Theatre Department, which puts on multiple quality productions that can be enjoyed by the whole community.
With over 6 miles of greenway trails and such close proximity to Lake Norman, staying active is an easy option for Davidson residents. Lake Norman provides endless opportunities for swimming, boating, and waterfront fun. Exploring the lake on your own is a fun adventure, with many companies such as Aloha Paddle Sports offering rental kayaks and paddleboards. There are also numerous parks in the area, including Fisher Farm which has miles of mountain biking trails. With the warm, tight knit nature of the town comes lots of traditions. This includes an annual Halloween parade, a Christmas festival, and the annual Art on the Green Festival where local art, music, and food can be enjoyed by the public.
The public school system in Davidson is part of the overall Charlotte-Mecklenburg School system, which serves over 150 schools. Students that reside in Davidson typically attend Davidson Elementary School, Bailey Middle School, and William A. Hough High School. There are also a number of private and charter schools in the area, including Davidson Day School, Davidson Green School, Lake Norman Christian School, and more. Davidson College, the most well known college in the region, is a prestigious liberal arts college and serves an important role in the community as a center for academics and culture. Other excellent colleges nearby include the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Queens University, Cabarrus College of Health Sciences, Catawba College, and Belmont Abbey College.
Davidson’s top industries include manufacturing and education. Top manufacturing employers include Interline Brands, Ingersoll Rand, and MSC Industrial Direct. Davidson College is another top employer for the area. What is unique about Davidson is that the town truly promotes entrepreneurship, and residents love to support their small local businesses and shop locally.
In order to keep the village feel of the community, Davidson actually has a ban on the construction of drive-thru’s! This ban promotes walkability, ensuring that as the town expands it will remain sustainable. Davidson has even won awards for this sustainability, such as the National Environmental Protection Agency Smart Growth Award for Overall Excellence in Town Planning and Design in 2004.