New bar/venue The Chop Shop looks to bring back the old NoDa | CLT Blog
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New bar/venue The Chop Shop looks to bring back the old NoDa

Posted on 11 May 2011 by Justin Ruckman

NoDa is getting a new bar and concert venue as The Chop Shop holds its official opening celebration this weekend. The Chop Shop is being brought to life by an experience group in the local music and arts scene.

Jay Tilyard, Bob Davis, Tracie Nasta, and Matt and Doug Gerin have worked the past year converting 17,000 square feet of warehouse space into a music hall complete with bar, pool tables, and (eventually) two separate stage areas and an outdoor “playground.”

NoDa is the arts; freaky and free-spirited,” says Tilyard. He sees The Chop Shop as a local hangout and creative space, and wants artists to display and sell their work without having to pay a commission. Not only does Tilyard want to host concerts, but also art nights, parties, video shoots, and other creative events. “We want to bring back the old NoDa,” says Tilyard.

The Chop Shop will open Friday and Saturday, May 13th and 14th, at 8PM, and will feature Tara Riley on aerial silks, a jazz trio, Kristine Navarro with Dan Wall, live art with Tim Schaeffer, and more.

Nearly everything in the venue has been repurposed and recycled. The mens bathroom counter is a former truck tool box, with lighting provided by the front end of an old Dodge Challenger. Elsewhere, Harley-Davidson exhaust pipes hold lights and an old warehouse breaker box shelves liquor bottles.

The Chop Shop is part of what is being labeled the “NoDa within Noda.” It is a phrase used by Tilyard and repeated by Max Wallace, one of the founders of Hackerspace Charlotte.

Hackerspace Charlotte, along with The Chop Shop and Ultimate Gym, share a home in the former Newco Fibre warehouse complex located across train tracks and behind North Davidson businesses. In addition to a used tire business and appliance shop, the warehouse also provides practice space for the Charlotte Rollergirls and, for a time, was home to the Dugg Dugg art gallery.

Hackerspace Charlotte, founded in September, offers space for members to work on projects in addition to hosting meetings almost every night of the week. Topics range from lock picking and hardware hacking to programming and dry ice Jenga.

Ultimate Gym is another major tenant in the Newco warehouse. They gym, which moved from its Tryon Street location five years ago, occupies 25,000 square feet and has several boxing and sparing rings. Training is available in twelve different martial arts as well as aerial silks, Pilates and more.

As the area changes with old shops closing and new bars opening, the old Newco warehouse continues to mature into its new role as the NoDa within NoDa — recapturing the creativity and free-spiritedness that made the neighborhood what it is today.

Read more about The Chop Shop in the NoDa Neighborhood Association.

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