Gastonia is located in Gaston County
(of which it is the county seat) between Charlotte
along US Hwy 74 near Kings Mountain
, Mount Holly
, and the South Fork of the Catawba River.
The major industry in Gastonia has been textiles. This industry continues to be productive, but the introduction of commerce and industry related to automotive, parts manufacturing, oil and air filter manufacturing, hand tools, and chain saws, has helped the city to see improvements in both its employment and economic base.
Gastonia is part of the Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill metro area.