is a town in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina located between Charlotte, North Carolina and Rock Hill, SC. It is perhaps most famous as the birthplace of James K. Polk, the 11th U.S. president.
Pineville was changed forever when the initial segment of Interstate 485 opened to traffic—a one mile stretch connecting interchanges at NC Highway 51 and South Boulevard. Although it was designed to divert through traffic around Charlotte via a freeway loop, I-485 incidentally passed directly through tiny Pineville.
In the years to follow, largely undeveloped land adjacent to Pineville's two I-485 interchanges exploded into what is presently the largest shopping district in North Carolina. With nearly of retail space, Pineville is home to the 1.1 million square foot Carolina Place Mall, at least two power centres and many strip malls, outparcels and free standing retailers.
The situation in Pineville can be considered a textbook example of urban sprawl. Because it was largely motivated by the introduction of a freeway to the area, the Pineville shopping district generally requires a motor vehicle for access. Despite of new retail space, the population of Pineville today, slightly less than 4,000, is barely greater than it was in 1990. This is partly a consequence of Pineville's geographic location. Sandwiched between Charlotte and the South Carolina state line, Pineville cannot expand its municipal boundaries. However, substantial undeveloped land was available prior to the introduction of I-485. Yet it was rapidly purchased by developers and approved for retail uses nearly without exception, quickly sealing Pineville's fate as a place that is known to many but home to few. This is an example of the criticism that sprawl causes excessive single use zoning.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 3.6 square miles (9.2 km²), all of it land.