A Recognized Community is a residential community group with distinct geographic boundaries that has met a set of parameters, and has been formally recognized by Gastonia City Council. These Recognized Communities can include Neighborhood Associations, Property Associations, Homeowner Associations, and other residential community groups with distinct, identifiable geographic boundaries.
Recognized Communities are partnered with a City staff member, who serves as the Community Liaison and is the main point of contact between the City and the Community. These liaisons will regularly attend community meetings to provide information and assist residents in identifying solutions to concerns.
Participants of the A.C.E. Program are provided with access to a number of services and resources which enhance community identity and implement neighborhood improvements.
Recognized Communities commit to providing feedback, input and support for city sponsored events, projects, and planning initiatives. These communities also will receive official communication from City departments on a variety of programs, services, and improvement activities that directly impact participating communities. By partnering with participating communities, the City of Gastonia is better able to deliver services tailored toward the individual needs and desires of communities, as well as receive feedback regarding proposed improvement projects throughout the City.
City of Gastonia's Recognized Communities
Laurel East Community Watch
The Laurel East Community Watch was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on March 15, 2022. This community consists of over 400 households and is located south of the Schiele Museum on E. Garrison Blvd. The Laurel East Community Watch has a vibrant and active neighborhood watch and their efforts are evident throughout their community.
This community regularly volunteers their time to conduct neighborhood cleanups, they financially support activities and improvement projects at Sherwood Elementary School through their annual luminary fundraiser, and they continuously seek opportunities to enhance their community and serve their neighbors.
Amber Bridges, Economic Development Specialist, serves as the Laurel East Community Watch's Community Liaison.
Mayor and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Dan Aleman, Secretary of the Laurel East Community Watch Steering Committee.
The Village at Parkside
The Village at Parkside was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on May 17, 2022. This diverse neighborhood includes over 300 households and is located in South Gastonia, near Martha Rivers Park. With a community-led homeowners association being organized in 2019, the HOA board is excited to engage neighbors in community building activities and events as well as desires to build relationships with City officials and staff members.
Along with other desires to enhance the quality of life of community members, one goal for this neighborhood is to create a community-led neighborhood watch program. The City of Gastonia will come alongside The Village at Parkside and provide the needed support to develop safety and communication plans to enhance the sense of security in this community.
Rusty Bost, Director of Development Services, serves as The Village at Parkside's Community Liaison.
Mayor and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Corry Slade, HOA President of The Village at Parkside.
Rusty Bost (Bottom Right) serves as their Community Liaison.
Apple Creek Village Homeowners Association
The Apple Creek Village Homeowners Association was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on May 17, 2022. This neighborhood includes approximately 270 households and is located north of Gastonia. Although, this community's physical address is located in Dallas, NC, this development was annexed into the City Limits of Gastonia in 2005. Broken out into three phases, Apple Creek Village has two separate HOA boards (one for Phase 1 and one for Phases 2/3), but this community unified as one neighborhood to be observed as a single Recognized Community through the Alliance for Community Enrichment program.
This community looks forward to having a partnership with the City of Gastonia to assist in tapping in to resources to host community events and provide guidance in addressing community concerns.
Robert Cloninger, Field Operations Division Manager (Public Works), serves as Apple Creek Village HOA's Community Liaison.
Mayor and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Dana Dees, (Phase 1) HOA President of Apple Creek Village.
Robert Cloninger (Bottom Right) serves as their Community Liaison.
Willow Creek was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on June 21, 2022. This community is home to 328 households and is nestled near Armstrong Park Road and E. Hudson Boulevard, with one of its primary entrances being located directly across from Gastonia Fire Station #4.
Willow Creek has established goals to strengthen its public safety, encourage neighborhood upkeep and beautification, promote its appreciation of diversity, spur neighborhood involvement, and embrace an atmosphere of community within their neighborhood.
This community is excited to develop greater relationship with the City and make use of several of the benefits that the Alliance for Community Enrichment program offers, such as the Movie-in-a-Box program.
Juliann Lehman, Keep Gastonia Beautiful Administrator, serves as Willow Creek's Community Liaison.
Mayor and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Phillip Morris, resident of the Willow Creek community.
Juliann Lehman (Bottom Right) serves as their Community Liaison.
Highland Neighborhood Association
The Highland Neighborhood Association was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on October 4, 2022. Within the boundaries of this community, there are over 2,000 households. Over the years, the Highland Neighborhood Association has positively impacted their community in many ways. From developing a social enterprise and operating the RAMS Kitchen in order to provide healthier food options in the area, to diligently working to create an Affordable Housing Planning Tool which would benefit residents in securing safe, affordable housing, this neighborhood association has taken active strides to enhancing the quality of life for citizens in their community.
The Highland Neighborhood Association regularly meets to discuss and discover new ways that can enhance the quality of life of residents in the community. Through the partnership with the City, by way of the A.C.E. program, the efforts and impact of the Highland Neighborhood Association can be increased with greater knowledge and access of City resources and services.
Randi Gates, Director of Transportation, serves as the Highland Neighborhood Association's Community Liaison.
Mayor and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to multiple members of the Highland Neighborhood Association.
Randi Gates (Front Right) serves as their Community Liaison.
Riverwood Plantation HOA
The Riverwood Plantation Homeowners Association was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on October 4, 2022. Located just southeast of Martha Rivers Park, the Riverwood Plantation HOA includes 248 households and has an active HOA board that strives to take actions which enhance the quality of life for its residents.
Neighborhood leaders believe that the Riverwood Plantation community has long been a good place to live and for families to grow. One goal of this neighborhood is to continue setting high standards in all areas in order to maintain the quality of life that has been the tradition. By partnering with the City of Gastonia through the A.C.E. program, Riverwood Plantation desires to continue building relationships with City staff and gaining greater access to services and resources to maintain the high standards it has for the community.
Andy Stahr, Senior Administrative Services Coordinator, serves as the Riverwood Plantation HOA's Community Liaison.
Mayor and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Mr. James Howell, Secretary/Treasurer of the Riverwood Plantation HOA.
Andy Stahr (Bottom Right) serves as their Community Liaison.
York-Chester Neighborhood Association
The York-Chester Neighborhood Association was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on November 15, 2022. The York-Chester Neighborhood Association not only encompasses residents within its Historic District, which is the City’s oldest community, but also includes residents of the Forest Hills neighborhood, located just south of the historic district’s boundaries. With an estimated 700 households within this community, the Neighborhood Association has set clear goals on what it hopes to achieve through its partnership with the City of Gastonia’s A.C.E. program.
The Neighborhood Association desires to promote opportunities for the residents to gather in various types of events; it desires to grow a sense of community togetherness, pride and accomplishment; it desires to provide York-Chester residents with opportunities to “give back” to their neighborhood through community organization, leadership and participation; and it hopes that residents of York-Chester will receive added value from the benefits that the partnership with their community and City can provide within its community life.
Cindy Forrester, Division Manager of Fleet Services, serves as the York-Chester Neighborhood Association's Community Liaison.
Mayor and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Mr. Jeff Trepel and Mr. Joshua Hauser, President of the York Chester Neighborhood Association.
Cindy Forrester (Bottom Left) serves as their Community Liaison.
Efird Catawba Creek Community Watch
The Efird Catawba Creek Community Watch was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on November 15, 2022. Historically, the Efird Catawba Creek Community has been represented by an older generation, but in recent years, younger families have moved into this neighborhood. As a result, the Efird Catawba Creek Community Watch desires to provide more opportunities to bring families together and encourage residents to rely on one another to help increase safety and comradery in the neighborhood. With nearly 150 households in this community, the partnership with the City of Gastonia and this neighborhood will encourage more opportunities for neighbors to engage with one another and in City programs and events.
Mayor and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Mr. Torrence Lindsay, Mr. Tracy Watson, and Ms. Ann Mitchell, who are all member-leaders of the Efird Catawba Creek Community Watch.
Planters Ridge was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on December 20, 2022. Planters Ridge is located just south of the intersection at Robinwood Road and Hoffman Road and is home to 40 families. Although it is a relatively small neighborhood, the sense of community between its neighbors is abundant. Neighbors regularly communicate with one another to share community concerns, and its active homeowners association leaders offer multiple opportunities for neighbors to gather together and socialize throughout the year.
Along with many other benefits, the partnership with the City’s A.C.E. program will provide more resources for social gatherings to enhance neighborly relationships, assist in connecting citizens with City staff and leadership, as well as provide open dialogue between the neighborhood and the City to better understand community needs while sharing opportunities for neighbors to become more engaged in the life of Gastonia.
Mary Elliott, Director of Communications and Marketing, serves as Planters Ridge's Community Liaison.
Mayor Pro Tem and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Sondra Huntely, Lisa Dale, and Kate Hamad, who are all members of the board of directors for the Planters Ridge homeowners association.
Bethesda Oaks HOA
The Bethesda Oaks Homeowners Association was formally recognized by Gastonia City Council on February 21, 2023. Located on the eastern boundary of the Gastonia city limits, nestled between S. New Hope Road and Lowell-Bethesda Bethesda Road, rests this neighborhood. With nearly 385 households in this community, the Bethesda Oaks HOA is actively involved in finding ways to bring neighbors together.
The goal of the Bethesda Oaks HOA is to make its neighborhood an enjoyable place to live amongst wonderful neighbors who desire to make their community the best it can be. By becoming a Recognized Community, residents and community leaders will be able to enhance relationships with City staff members, become more informed of City functions, and have access to a multitude of benefits which can assist in providing more opportunities to bring neighbors together.
Clayton Smith, Employement Manager for the City of Gastonia, serves as the Bethesda Oaks HOA's Community Liaison.
Mayor Pro Tem and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Jeremy Eastburn, Kristen Hennessey, and Bill Marino, who are all members of the board of directors for the Bethesda Oaks Homeowners Association.
During the February 21, 2023 Gastonia City Council meeting, Cramer Woods was formally recognized by the Coucil as a Recognized Community through participation in the A.C.E. program. Cramer Woods is located on the south-eastern boundary of the Gastonia city limits, near New Hope Elementary School. Cramer Woods is split up into several phases, with different governing bodies (HOA’s). Phase 1 HOA and Phases 2 & 3 HOA have come together to apply as a single Recognized Community. There are 311 households within these three phases of the community.
The Cramer Woods HOA boards already actively engage neighbors to come together through community yard sales, movie nights, and events around Christmas and Halloween. This community prides itself on being a safe, diverse, friendly, and all-inclusive community. By participating in the A.C.E. program, this neighborhood hopes to build a strong partnership with the City of Gastonia, and continue to improve and strengthen its community.
Kristy Crisp, Director of Economic Development, serves as the Community Liaison for Cramer Woods.
Mayor Pro Tem and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Brent McDowell (Phase 2 &3 HOA) and Larry Rainwater (Phase 1 HOA), who are members of the board of directors for the Cramer Woods homeowners associations.
Kristy Crisp (Bottom Left) serves as their Community Liaison.
Madison Green Townhomes
Madison Green Townhomes was formally recognized by City Council during the March 21, 2023 council meeting. This community is located off of E. Hudson Boulevard and is comprised of 100 households. With a new Homeowner’s Association board being elected at the beginning of this year, the new leadership of this community desired to take greater effort in engaging neighbors through more communication, offering opportunities for social engagement, and much more.
A recent addition to this community is the creation of Communications Committee. This committee will assist in providing information to neighbors on what is going on in the community as well as how they can become more engaged in programs sponsored by the City of Gastonia.
This neighborhood is excited to become part of the Alliance for Community Enrichment program and one representative of the community shared, “Together, we look forward to our community continuing to grow and becoming a more active member and voice in our community.” The City of Gastonia is excited to have this partnership with Madison Green Townhomes and looks forward to future collaborations to enhance this community and the City as a whole.
Judy Smith, Director of Human Resources, serves as the Community Liaison for Madison Green Townhomes.
The Catawba Hills Homeowners Association was formally recognized by City Council during the December 19, 2023 council meeting. This community is situated on the eastern boundary of the Gastonia city limits, branching off of Beaty Road. With more than 380 households in the community, the neighborhood offers many amenities to residents that encourage community building and strengthening of relationships with neighbors. Residents of this community are pleased to live in a safe and friendly neighborhood.
In 2024, the HOA board has plans of beginning new community engagement opportunities including regularly occuring movie nights for neighbors, hosting block parties to encourage comradery, creating a neighborhood watch program, and working with the fire department for community outreach events.
The members of this community are looking forward to developing a great partnership with the City of Gastonia. The Catawba Hills community believes that together, with the City, they can enhance their community, becoming more engaged and networking with multiple resources provided by the city programs.
Gina Merrell, Budget/Grants Administrator, serves as the Community Liaison for the Catawba Hills community.
Mayor Franks and City Council presented the Certificate of Recognition to Omar Borders and Danielle Greb, members of the board of directors for the Catawba Hills homeowners association.
Your neighborhood can be our next Recognized Community! Complete this online application to become a Recognized Community or request a hard copy application by contacting Tyler Davis, Neighborhood Program Administrator, via email: Tyler.Davis@gastonianc.gov, or phone: (704) 866-6907.