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Old March 24th, 2010, 10:12 AM   #101
kingchef
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i keep hearing so much about 2010 being a big year for building projects. there seemed to be such a determination for a minority group to oversee the hotel project, now i wonder if they are able to secure the money? both the ex-mayor, sandford, and wharton have talked openly and often about the need for large hotels in downtown; yet, it seems that there is food dragging on getting rooms ready for these conventions, etc. the beale street landing seems to be a project that is disconcerting, because of the supposed lack of funding. main street is looking for a major tenant of 500 employees, in order to bring traffic to the development area; however, the money spent on consultants, who stated a year ago that the very first things needed on main street to increase traffic was the re-establishment of two-way traffic. yet, it was shot down by ccc and the mayor for the alleged lack of money to place the infrastructure in the form of signage, signals, etc. it seems, at this point, things arent't completed on any projects, but there is always money for consultants and committees. the announcement regarding the greenway was exciting, however, it was embarrassing to say it would be completed in 20 years time. some of these things just don't add up. i hate to be so negative sounding, but it is a bit ridiculous.

thanks to you jford for your timely and helpful information answering my question.
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Old April 14th, 2010, 01:45 AM   #102
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jr, i wondered if you can provide some technical advice. if you go to bill cobb urban photos aerial views, select memphis, etc., is there a technical way or a program for pc that would allow construction of a complete picture of downtown. i know that many of the buildings in the medical center are probably not going to work; however, some of the midtown structures, east memphis, and the poplar corridor pictures might, if i can figure math of angle and distance, and a few other issues.

just thought you might know. by the way, i had already posted, before i saw your posts re: pyramid. the information is encouraging. i thought the pinch district development was already planned, as far as housing, apts, and small retail development. i want so badly to open a mid to highend grill in that area. an establishment w/ piano bar, huge bar, outside courtyard and atrium. possibly 24 hours daily, high end brunch on weekends. toying w/ atrium supper club w/ dancing (classic styles.) most of the menu would be seasonal, low country southern french.
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Old April 14th, 2010, 11:47 PM   #103
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kingchef View Post
...is there a technical way or a program for pc that would allow construction of a complete picture of downtown?
Not that I know of KingChef. I'm no buff on graphic/ imaging software.
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Old April 21st, 2010, 05:20 AM   #104
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Askew Nixon picked to design $75M casino
Memphis Business Journal - by MIchael Sheffield

Photo Credit : LEE SWETS | MBJ

Photo Credit : ALAN HOWELL | MBJ

Askew Nixon Ferguson Architects has been selected by Abston-McKay Ventures LLC and Lakes Entertainment Inc. as lead architect for the $75 million Sportsman Casino and Lodge in Tunica. Design on the recently announced project is expected to be complete by October; construction should start late this year. The property could be open by the end of 2011. For Askew Nixon, the project represents one of its largest deals in recent months and may signal a recovery in the architecture industry. “It was pretty grim for the first two and a half months (this year), but we’re starting to see some things come in,” Askew says. “A lot of our big clients like FedEx and the University of Memphis are starting to crank up some things that were on hold.” Askew’s perspective echoes the American Institute of Architects’ Architectural Billings Index, which rose to 44.8 in February, up from 42.5 in January. A score below 50 indicates a decrease in billings. March numbers are due next week.

Oxford, Miss.-based Abston-McKay and Minnetonka, Minn.-based Lakes Entertainment are co-developing the project, which will be located at the site of the former Isle of Capri casino near Sam’s Town Casino and Hotel on Casino Strip. Askew Nixon will redesign the 220-room hotel left by Isle of Capri when it closed in 2002. The casino will be a new building Askew Nixon is designing as part of the project. Lee Askew, a principal with Askew Nixon, says the project represents a return to casino architecture for the firm, which designed Sam’s Town in Tunica in 1993 and has worked on smaller projects at Tunica casino properties. Askew Nixon also has designed casinos in Louisiana and Illinois. Kevin Hunter, CEO of Abston-McKay Ventures, says the company considered firms “inside and outside the city of Memphis” before choosing Askew Nixon. “We went with them because (Askew has) a great vision of this area and world-class credentials in the gaming industry,” Hunter says. “There are a lot of people throwing out ideas on this project and he’s keeping us pulled together to keep the focus on this project.”

Askew says the new casino will include more than 40,000 square feet of gaming space on one level, a 1,200-seat theater and “one of the largest buffets in the area.” Plans are in place for a 5,000-square-foot VIP players lounge, new swimming pools, a poker room and retail space. The number of hotel rooms will increase to 230. The project received site approval from the Mississippi Gaming Commission last month.

Askew Nixon isn’t the only local firm finding business in casino projects. Hnedak Bobo Group Inc. was recently named lead architect on the $500 million West Valley Resort near Glendale, Ariz. “We’re really going to gut it so everything will be brand new, from wall surfaces to fixtures and carpeting,” Askew says. “You won’t even know you’re in an older building.” Lakes is an offshoot of the company that originally developed Grand Casino properties in Tunica, Biloxi and Gulfport in the late 1990s. Lakes sold its Grand properties to Caesars in 1998 and left the Tunica market shortly thereafter. Harrah’s Entertainment Inc. bought the Grand properties (along with Horseshoe) in 2004 and 2005. Ironically, Harrah’s original property in Tunica was located at the old Isle of Capri site until 1999.

Scott Barber, division president of Harrah’s Entertainment, says he doesn’t know enough details to speculate on the possibility of success for Sportsman, which will join nine other casinos currently in operation in Tunica County. “We’re the biggest and baddest and we weren’t successful at that site, so they must know something we don’t,” Barber says. Askew says with architects and engineers combined, the firm will have about 15 people working on design. Salt Lake City-based Okland Construction Co. Inc. will be the general contractor on the project. Subcontractors have not been chosen.

Hunter says even though the development process is “lengthy and involved,” Sportsman is proceeding as planned toward the 2011 opening target. “We want to move as quickly as possible, but we also want to make the right decisions,” Hunter says. “What you don’t want to do is get in a hurry with a project of this magnitude. We want to make sure it’s high quality.”
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Old April 21st, 2010, 05:21 AM   #105
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Pyramid, Bass Pro Talks Move to Lease Terms
BILL DRIES | The Daily News

City of Memphis leaders and executives from Bass Pro Shops meet Tuesday to begin talking lease terms for The Pyramid. Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. included a draft lease in an April 13 letter to Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris and president Jim Hagale.

A city delegation was in Nashville Monday to review the project for the State Building Commission. The commission’s executive committee approved an extension of the use of revenue from the Downtown Tourism Development Zone (TDZ) to include The Pyramid. The resulting tax increment financing will help finance the public infrastructure improvements around the site. Before Monday’s expansion of how the tax money within the zone was used, it could only be used to retire the debt of the Memphis Cook Convention Center over 30 years. The financing is in its eighth year.

Tuesday’s meeting in Memphis will also include representatives of developers Poag & McEwen. The firm is involved, Wharton said, because Bass Pro executives want to see some kind of plans for developing the surrounding Pinch District. The outdoor retailer plans to build a super store within The Pyramid and develop other attractions, including a hotel either inside The Pyramid or attached to the former arena. Other items on the agenda are defining terms in a lease agreement, a list of landlord contributions for the city to accomplish, a task list for Bass Pro Shops, construction standards and timelines for construction as well as the flow of money into the project.

The goal of both sides is to complete the deal and sign a lease in the next month. A signing could come as early as an April 29 meeting in Springfield, Mo., at Bass Pro Shops headquarters. The meeting there is scheduled to “draft the final versions of the lease/development/improvement agreements,” according to the city’s letter.
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Old April 21st, 2010, 05:54 AM   #106
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...
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Old April 27th, 2010, 12:37 AM   #107
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Developer begins talks on revitalization of historic Pinch District
The Commercial Appeal | By Amos Maki

Pinch District businesses like Red Fish Gallery, where a pedestrian pauses to window shop, could get a boost if Poag & McEwen Lifestyle Centers follows through on plans to develop a retail district near The Pyramid.
Photo by Mike Brown

A portion of the Pinch District adjacent to The Pyramid could be transformed into a retail and entertainment hub that complements Bass Pro Shops' planned flagship store in the vacant arena. Memphis-based Poag & McEwen Lifestyle Centers, the original developer of Saddle Creek in Germantown, is talking with Bass Pro about developing part of the historic district. Bass Pro and Poag & McEwen have partnered previously on projects in California and Texas, and the Springfield, Mo.-based retailer approached Poag & McEwen a year ago about improving the area around The Pyramid, said Bob Rogers, chief operating officer and general counsel for Poag & McEwen, a privately owned company. "Basically, we're talking about retail, restaurants and entertainment," Rogers said. "Bass Pro for a long time has wanted a district, a major project, adjacent to The Pyramid," he said. Rogers would not describe the location of the targeted area, saying it is early in the process and there were few details he could reveal. Bass Pro and city officials are considering an initial 20-year lease on The Pyramid, with seven renewal periods of five years each. Bass Pro plans to turn the arena into a regional center with retail shops, restaurants, offices and a Mississippi River exhibit. News of Poag & McEwen's involvement came to light when Memphis Mayor A C Wharton mentioned it in a recent letter to Bass Pro officials. City Housing and Community Development director Robert Lipscomb said the city would likely have to assemble some property for the project. "Yes, we have to acquire property," said Lipscomb. "We are in discussions with St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, the primary property owner, regarding potential acquisition of their property. Eminent domain is not contemplated at this point."

Poag & McEwen's lifestyle centers generally combine the traditional retail functions of a mall, with extensive landscaping and amenities oriented toward upscale consumers. The centers often have a mix of uses, such as restaurants and office and residential space. In November, the State Building Commission's executive subcommittee approved a 10-year lease agreement between the University of Memphis and Poag & McEwen for a project called Highland Row. The multi-purpose commercial and residential complex on Highland south of Central would include a Barnes & Noble-operated U of M bookstore. Clues about what could happen in the Pinch District, one of the oldest settlements in the Bluff City, can be gleaned from a Center City Commission master plan for the area and the Wolf River Harbor.

After The Pyramid closed, the Pinch district lost momentum. Downtown officials say the Bass Pro and Poag & McEwen projects could help restore the area.
Photo by Mike Maple

When Bass Pro began expressing interest in The Pyramid five years ago, and as St. Jude Children's Research Hospital continued to expand its landholdings west of its campus, the Downtown development agency in 2008 studied how to create a framework for sustainable development in the Pinch District. The study of a 23-acre, 10-square-block portion of the district includes the area directly across Front Street from The Pyramid, a likely spot for the Poag & McEwen project. The master plan calls for a mixed-use "retail and entertainment destination" on Front Street near Overton Avenue, including a hotel. Heading east to Main Street and beyond to St. Jude's campus, the plan suggests more high-density, mixed-use development, including ground-floor retail with residences above.

After The Pyramid closed and other entertainment areas like Cooper-Young and South Main Street gained steam, the Pinch lost much of the momentum it had started to develop in the 1990s. Downtown officials say the Bass Pro and Poag & McEwen projects could infuse new energy into the area. "No question in my mind," said CCC president Jeff Sanford. "The Bass Pro project will rekindle interest in development throughout the Pinch." Land owners in the area want to learn more about the project and how it would impact their properties and businesses. On Thursday, a group of 10 business and property owners in the Pinch sent Wharton and City Council members a letter asking to be more involved in the planning process. "My concern is that decisions are being made and none of the business owners or property owners are being told about what is going on or being asked for input," said Greg Ericson, president and CEO of Ericson Group Inc. at 400 N. Front. "To me, development like this is good for the city of Memphis as long as everybody is included."
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Old April 27th, 2010, 12:38 AM   #108
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Carlisle Corp. Files $1.5M Building Permit

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Carlisle Corp. has filed a $1.5 million permit application with the city-county Office of Construction Code Enforcement to renovate the former One Beale sales center at 263 Wagner Place in Downtown into the company’s new headquarters. Carlisle, whose wholly owned subsidiary Wendelta Inc. is a Wendy’s restaurant franchisee, will depart its currently leased space at 100 Peabody Place. The company’s chairman and founder is Gene Carlisle. Plans call for the company to convert the building that once housed the former Joe’s Crab Shack into a 16,000-square-foot Class A office space.

Operating as Carlisle Landing LLC, the company bought the property in 2004 and converted it into a temporary sales center for the now-shelved One Beale mixed-use development. The Center City Revenue Finance Corp. earlier this month awarded a six-year tax freeze for the project, with an extra year contingent on the presence of certain design elements, for a seven-year tax freeze.

The CCRFC incentive will save the company more than $200,000 on its projected $2.7 million redevelopment of the property. Design upgrades in documentation submitted to the Center City Commission include lighting along Wagner Street and the upgrade of a plaza garden at the end of Linden Crossing. Carlisle’s company, which currently employs 35 people at its current office, will almost double its space at Peabody Place, where its current lease expires in July.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports – Eric Smith
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Old April 27th, 2010, 12:39 AM   #109
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Barboro Flats: Construction Update Pics

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Old April 27th, 2010, 12:39 AM   #110
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The new Le Bonheur Children's Hospital expansion tower is shaping up quite nice.

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Old April 27th, 2010, 12:40 AM   #111
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In the shadow of Methodist/ Le Bonheur's new $340 Million investment, development of Legends Park continues.

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Old April 27th, 2010, 12:40 AM   #112
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Harrah's Hope Lodge (next to Sun Studio)

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Old May 20th, 2010, 12:53 AM   #113
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Uptown Memphis digs mixed-use project
The Commercial Appeal | By Tom Bailey Jr.

Bulldozer operator Tommy West clears land on Thursday at Danny Thomas and North Parkway, north of St. Jude's, for a mixed-use project to serve Uptown Memphis.
Photo by Kyle Kurlick

A curious Uptown resident sent her e-mail at 10:34 a.m. Thursday to the Uptown Memphis official Tanja Mitchell: "What's all the digging? The earthmoving means more stores -- within walking distance -- are in store for the vast, 100-block Uptown Memphis neighborhood. Site preparation has started on a mixed-use development of commercial, residential and office buildings near the northwest corner of Thomas and A.W. Willis. The site is across Willis from the back gate of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. The first tenant will be a SunTrust bank branch, for which construction should start this summer, said Alexandra "Alex" Mobley, vice president of Henry Turley Co. But the partnership of Turley and Belz Enterprises, working with the City of Memphis, is seeking to recruit a pharmacy, medium-size grocery and other tenants.

The new development sits on the southern edge of Uptown, bordered by Willis on the south, Mill on the north, Seventh on the west, and a new extension of Uptown Street on the east. The SunTrust branch will be at the corner of Willis and the newly lengthened Uptown Street. Uptown is the redevelopment of what had been one of the city's poorest neighborhoods, once anchored by a blighted Hurt Village public housing project. It's a varied-income community of public housing, market-rate homes and affordable rental units for low-income families.

Robert Barnes works on new curbs and walkways Thursday for a mixed-use development in Uptown Memphis near Thomas and A.W. Willis.
Photo by Kyle Kurlick

Since work started in 2004, 268 single-family homes, 549 apartments, a 69-unit senior facility and $12 million in infrastructure have been built, Mobley said. The mixed-use site sits at the highly visible, southern entrance to Uptown, where thousands of cars a day pass through the Thomas (U.S. 51) and Willis intersection, Mobley said. Single-family homes lining the north side of Mill overlook the mixed-use site. Buffering those residents from the bank and future businesses will be a row of more dense residential housing, perhaps town homes, on the south side of Mill.

Tax-increment financing is paying for the site work, Mobley said. That lets cities obtain development bonds to fund infrastructure improvements and to use taxes generated by the development to pay off the bonds. "Our objective was to get the basic services that pretty well have abandoned a lot of areas of the inner city," Henry Turley said. "One is a grocery. We don't have a grocery deal made yet, and that would be an objective," he said. "And there needs to be a drugstore." The ideal place for a 25,000-square-foot grocery would be on the west side of Thomas, where the long-closed Chism Trail grocery once operated, Mobley said.
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Old May 20th, 2010, 12:54 AM   #114
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Proposed ‘Tiger Lane’ Features Surprises
BILL DRIES | The Daily News

Post Demolition: This rendering shows The Fairgrounds after all of the buildings and barns slated for demolition come down. It doesn’t show all of the improvements the City Council will vote on at its May 25 meeting. It does show the footprints of the demolished structures which would be used for parking

Public Green Space: This rendering shows “Tiger Lane”, the seven acre greenspace from East Parkway to the west side of The Liberty Bowl, with parking spaces on either side that could be rented for tailgating next to the lawn. It includes the option of extending Young Avenue across East Parkway, through what used to be Libertyland, intersecting with Early Maxwell Boulevard on the west side of the Mid-South Coliseum.
Source: The City of Memphis

Architects and planners laying out a seven-acre green space at the Mid-South Fairgrounds again went beyond what they initially planned. But this week, they gave Memphis City Council members plenty of notice of the new ideas. ”This essentially fixes the site in its entirety,” architect Tom Marshall told the council as he reviewed plans that included more than the “Tiger Lane” green space running from East Parkway to the west side of Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium. “We did go further than we intended to,” he said. “This is a surprise. This is different. But we wanted to fix it.” The full council will vote in two weeks on a construction and funding resolution. The plan council members saw at executive session Tuesday has the green space as its centerpiece.

Tenants of the stadium began expressing concerns earlier this year about parking for tailgaters as they saw parking lots vanish around the Mid-South Coliseum. The parking lot demolition went beyond plans by then-Memphis Mayor Pro Tem Myron Lowery’s plans to create the green space as a beautification project until more long-term plans for the fairgrounds come along. Officials from the University of Memphis, Southern Heritage Classic and the AutoZone Liberty Bowl expressed concern they would be into football season in a few months with fewer parking spaces than they’ve had before.

A “halo wall” with six pedestrian entrances near the west wall of the stadium to create a pedestrian plaza is a new feature of the plan. The wall and plaza would be in the area where the recently demolished Arena Building once stood. The parking lot north of the Mid-South Coliseum has also been taken out to provide for drainage of the green space, Marshall said. Marshall said the halo wall should also handle long-term drainage problems in the Beltline area to the east of the fairgrounds. Other recommendations include a larger entrance off Hollywood Street near the Children’s Museum of Memphis to relieve some traffic congestion along Central Avenue.

There’s also a proposed road across what used to be the Libertyland amusement park that amounts to a continuation of Young Avenue across East Parkway. The road would intersect with Early Maxwell Boulevard at the western side of the coliseum. If Young is extended into the fairgrounds, all of the parts of the plan would increase the number of parking spaces there from 5,600 to 6,600. If no extension occurs and the Libertyland footprint becomes parking, the number goes up to 8,433.

In two weeks, the council should have a cost estimate that previously has been put at roughly $10 million. The work would be completed by Sept. 6 with council approval at the May 25 session. Housing and Community Development Director Robert Lipscomb said the anticipated amount needed to fund the fast track project is in the city’s budget already.
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Old May 20th, 2010, 12:55 AM   #115
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Memphis' dramatic growth as a rail hub has Chicago officials worried
By Peter Downs, Special to The Commercial Appeal

Photo by Alan Spearman

Memphis' growth as a major rail hub is getting Chicago city leaders and Illinois politicians to launch an ambitious program to remove rail transportation bottlenecks. Seems that while Memphis was busily investing in rail, Chicago wasn't. As a consequence, shippers who want efficient service increasingly look south. "We saw competition emerging from Memphis and looked at a potential loss of 17,000 jobs and $2 billion in economic activity a year," said Joseph Clary, who recently stepped down as director of public and intermodal transportation for the Illinois Department of Transportation. "I can't tell you how much I smile when I hear that," said Dexter Muller, vice president for community development at the Memphis Regional Chamber. "They used to say Chicago spilled more product than Memphis carried."

Memphis business and civic leaders began marketing the Bluff City as a freight hub and logistics center in 1979, but real growth really began only about 12 years ago. The turning point came as more and more manufacturing moved offshore to Asia, Muller said. Products arrived on the West Coast, but most of the population that would consume those products still lived east of the Mississippi River. The cheapest way to move product across the nation is by train and there are only four places where rails cross the Mississippi River, Muller said -- Chicago, St. Louis, Memphis and New Orleans, and New Orleans is too far south to efficiently reach many markets, he said.

With Chicago beset by traffic jams and more of the nation's consumer markets reachable in one day's drive from Memphis than from any other city, rail carriers picked Memphis as a place to begin building intermodal facilities -- yards with specially designed cranes for picking containers off the backs of rail cars and setting them on trucks or vice versa. Starting with Union Pacific Railroad's construction of an intermodal facility that could lift 400,000 containers a year and including the expansion earlier this year of the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad's lift facility to handle 1 million lifts a year and the new 300,000-lifts-a-year yard that the Norfolk Southern Railroad is building in Fayette County, rail carriers have invested a billion dollars in intermodal facilities in the Memphis area, Muller said. And giant distribution centers have followed in the wake of those facilities, bringing 170 million square feet of warehouse space to Memphis, "way outsized for a city this size," Muller said. "Our strength is that we can move product through the city much more quickly than Chicago can," he said. "Chicago is No. 1 in rail and we're now No. 3, but we're poised for growth and we're working at it." That growth spurred city officials in Chicago to sit down with rail carriers and agree on 31 projects to speed rail transportation through the nation's largest rail hub. "You could see the traffic jams," Clary said, citing freight trains that took 36 hours to go from Los Angeles to Chicago and were getting stuck in the city for another 36 hours.

They call the list of projects the Chicago Region Environmental & Transportation Efficiency Program. The estimated total cost of the multiyear program is $2.6 billion. The rail carriers that serve Chicago -- save for the Canadian National Railroad, which is not a member of CREATE -- committed $115 million to the program contingent on Illinois committing an equal amount. Despite the state's fiscal crisis, Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn upped the state's commitment to $400 million in his budget proposal this year. What makes Chicago partisans especially joyful is the support they are getting from the federal government. So far, the Obama administration has committed more than $600 million to the CREATE program. "This particular administration is very open to and very supportive of the state of Illinois," Clary said. The federal support for Chicago doesn't seem to worry Muller. As Chicago eliminates its bottlenecks, "it still will make more sense to go through Memphis to get product to Savannah or Florida," he said.
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Old May 20th, 2010, 12:56 AM   #116
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Pinch, Pyramid to get $70M in fed money to prepare for Bass Pro Shops
The Commercial | By Tom Bailey Jr.

The city of Memphis plans to spend all its federal recovery act bonds -- $70 million -- to redevelop The Pyramid and the Pinch District. The money will be used to prepare the arena for Bass Pro Shops, strengthen it against earthquakes and bring new sidewalks, lighting, signs, drainage and other infrastructure to the adjacent Pinch District, Robert Lipscomb, the city's director of Housing and Community Development, said Monday. The spending also continues the city's strategy to protect the thousands of high-quality jobs at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, a few blocks east of The Pyramid. If Uptown had not been improved, Lipscomb said, St. Jude would not have made its "$3 billion expansion." The city and developers have already transformed rundown housing projects flanking St. Jude to the north and south. "Now it's going to the west," Lipscomb said of the neighborhood improvements.

The federal economic recovery act provides about $70 million in subsidized financing for private and public construction projects to Memphis. "The (Pyramid/Pinch) project is an important one for the administration and the city of Memphis," city Finance Director Roland McElrath said Monday. Completion of a lease agreement is "imminent" with Bass Pro Shops, which would redevelop The Pyramid arena into a mix of retail, entertainment and offices, he said. Once Bass Pro Shops commits to remake The Pyramid, Poag & McEwen Lifestyle Centers would launch a related project to redevelop a swath of the Pinch District extending east from The Pyramid toward St. Jude. Complementing Bass Pro Shops' adaptation of The Pyramid, the Pinch District project also would be a mix of retail, restaurants and entertainment.

The federal Recovery Zone program provides two types of bonds. One is economic development bonds, to be used by governments only. The bonds would allow Memphis to pay 45 percent less in interest costs than with normal bonds. The city was allocated $27.7 million in these bonds. The other is facility bonds, to be issued by local government but used by private businesses. They are tax exempt, making the interest rate 2 to 3 percentage points lower, or saving 30 to 35 percent in interest costs. Memphis was allocated $41.6 million in these bonds.

Memphis would have financed the Bass Pro Shops and Pinch District redevelopment with or without the cheaper money, McElrath indicated. "It simply would have been a little more expensive if we didn't have the Recovery Zone bonds available," he said. The Memphis and Shelby County Industrial Development Board and Center City Revenue Finance Corp. are authorized to issue Recovery Zone bonds. On Wednesday, the industrial board will be asked to support the city's request.
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Old May 20th, 2010, 12:57 AM   #117
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Not development news, but a gig booked for legendary Memphian band, BigStar, turned into a tribute for the recent passing of frontman Alex Chilton. Comedy sitcom "That 70's Show" opens with the BigStar song "In the Street". The show took place at the newly renovated Levitt Shell in Overton Park, where BigStar recorded their hit live album in the mid-1970's. The weather was a little omnious, but Midtown came out in the thousands.

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Old May 20th, 2010, 12:57 AM   #118
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Cranes are up at Memphis International Airport for construction of the new transportation center. This massive project comes on the heels of the structural completion of the new 340ft air traffic control tower complex (base & tower).

image hosted on flickr

image hosted on flickr

image hosted on flickr

image hosted on flickr


The end result:
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Old June 16th, 2010, 08:26 PM   #119
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Community Gift
Le Bonheur celebrates 58 years with new hospital
TOM WILEMON | The Daily News

http://memphisdailynews.com/editoria....aspx?id=50721


Le Bonheur volunteers march down the parade route for the opening of the new $340 million children’s hospital on Tuesday. Photo: Lance Murphey
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Old June 19th, 2010, 09:56 PM   #120
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Bass Pro and Beyond
Hope for civic transformation with Big Three city projects
BILL DRIES | The Daily News


http://memphisdailynews.com/editoria....aspx?id=50663


Bass Pro and the City of Memphis continue to try and hammer out a lease agreement for The Pyramid, which would include a costly seismic retrofitting to be paid for by the city. Photo: Lance Murphey


One version from a 2008 city report of what The Pyramid might look like with a Bass Pro Shops store and other attractions. Note the location of a hotel inside the structure and an elevator to the top that is in the center with a restaurant on the top level. An alternate hotel site is the lodge building separate from The Pyramid but attached to it which would be on Front Street. The terms of a seismic retrofitting now being negotiated between the city and the retailer will be crucial to where these key features are.


The view of the Liberty Bowl from East Parkway has been dramatically altered since the demolition of most Mid-South Fair buildings. Photo: Lance Murphey


The $15.5 million plan for Tiger Lane began as a seven-acre greenspace at the Mid-South Fairgrounds. It now includes two new access roads as well as other modifications to the property. The project is on a tight timeline, scheduled for completion by mid-September when football and tailgating season begins at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium.


A recent appropriation by the Memphis City Council will breathe new life into the Beale Street Landing project, which stalled when millions in federal stimulus money went up in smoke. Photo: Lance Murphey


An artist’s rendering of what Beale Street Landing will look like when completed. The riverside project supervised by the Riverfront Development Corp. has one more phase to completion that would create a park atop the gift shop and restaurant and landing itself. Federal funding for the project vanished as the city transitioned through three mayors. In the confusion, RDC officials acknowledge they pushed ahead with the project instead of looking for design alternatives.

http://memphisdailynews.com/editoria....aspx?id=50663
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