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Nathan_in_DC

Is anything at all of note happening in Memphis?

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After perusing the Memphis Business Journal and comparing its front page to others, it either appears there is sever lack of local reporting or there just is nothing big really going on in regards to development or business in the city.

Is this true? Is Memphis being skipped over when it comes to urban redevelopment, unlike other larger second-tier cities in the country like Nashville, OKC, Pittsburgh, etc.?

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Not exactly.

Memphis has seen its share of announced developments over the course of the last two years, though not as many or as large as in other cities. Here are just a few of the most recent ones:

- Sears Crosstown building redevelopment into mixed use (http://www.crosstownmemphis.com)

- The old Hotel Chisca (original home of WHBQ radio) becoming market-rate apartments (Memphis Daily News story)

- Overton Square in Midtown becoming a theater arts district [adjacent to new Playhouse on the Square (completed), Circuit Playhouse (relocation to old PotS space), new Hattiloo Theatre (planned), new parking garage/water detention facility (under construction), renovations to existing buildings for new restaurants and shops] (http://www.overtonsquare.com)

- Mid-South Fairgrounds redevelopment [new Kroc Community Center (under construction), Liberty Bowl renovations (ongoing), Tiger Lane, etc.]

- Conversion of the Pyramid by Bass Pro Shops into a megastore with hotel, restaurant and entertainment space

- Beale Street Landing (new docking area for the American Queen and other excursion boats (completed), new restaurant/gift shop, new park space, cobblestone landing restoration)

Those are just a few I can name at the moment.

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There are lots of things going on, many projects have just recently broken ground. 2 new condos downtown, ut science building, southwest nursing building, overton square garage project, the pyramid construction is coming along nicely, the new tower for st jude has started. Future projects international paper headquarters, hilton hotel, new orpheum theater school, new dorms u of m. I have pictures of some of these projects just hadnt posted anything.

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The media is not great at keeping updates in Memphis.  Perhaps the best source is Memphis Daily News.  I've just returned to this site;  there is more activity on other boards.  I will try to help with the updates.

 

St. Jude, International Paper, Bass Pro Shops have all announced expansion plans.  IP is building a fourth tower (probably about the same ~15 stories as the other 3). 

 

Most projects are of the small, street-level variety that is critical to achieving pedestrian traffic.  It's important to note that for the first time in a while, there is evidence of regional collaboration.  The level of vitriol that has handicapped progress in the past, that has kept Memphis sort of in the mud, has been replaced with city and county mayors that work together for once.  And, most impressively, is the evidence that the city mayor, Wharton, has reached out twice to the neighboring chamber of commerce in Mississippi (Desoto County Chamber of Commerce) to stress collaboration.  That's something that his predecessor puportedly never did in his twelve or so years.

 

February 9, 2013, Memphis is hosting what is billed as the largest startup conference in the nation.  http://www.emergememphis.org/everywhereelse-co-the-startup-conference-announced-february-10-12th-2013-in-memphis-tennessee/

 

See also http://www.choose901.com/everywhere-else-the-startup-conference

 

More activity coming to Broad Avenue, affirming the 2010 conceptual experiment from "A New Face for an Old Broad."  Adjacent to, and running through, this neighborhood are a couple of bike projects.  The Greenline is extending by Broad, to connect to Overton Park to the west.  And they are building a "gate" to the park.  This board is probably already aware of the federal grant to connect downtown Memphis to downtown West Memphis, highlighted by the renovation of the Harrahan Bridge for bikes and runners.  And a project on Broad is a finalist for an arts grant

 

In December, a renovation downtown of a 12 story building and dilapidated adjacent garage was announced.

 

There is a bit of a lull these days, as certain decisions at the state level have worked against the city and the region, such as organ transplants and I-69 funding.  Looks like the city is digesting the new manufacturing projects, but there is evidence of several small business owners expanding which is nice. 

 

Victorian Village expanding with James Lee House; http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2012/sep/03/spooky-memphis-mansion-could-bring-new-life-to/

 

Right now, it seems that the eastern edge of Midtown is churning the most.  Cooper Young has a couple new restaurants, a new convenience store;  Overton Square to the north is evolving into the theater district previously described; Broad Ave is bustling; hopefully the Fairgrounds is next.  That would create a nice circuit along with the established Overton Park/Memphis Zoo area.  Get the city to ensure that there is a walkable, bikeable loop for those areas (Cooper, Madison, Poplar, E Pkwy, Young, and Central especially).  If Crosstown succeeds like Broad, then that would be a downright impressive neighborhood.  None of the districts are huge, necessarily, but each has their own distinct, complementary identity.  Not cookie--cutter suburban, lol...



There are lots of things going on, many projects have just recently broken ground. 2 new condos downtown, ut science building, southwest nursing building, overton square garage project, the pyramid construction is coming along nicely, the new tower for st jude has started. Future projects international paper headquarters, hilton hotel, new orpheum theater school, new dorms u of m. I have pictures of some of these projects just hadnt posted anything.

 

Is the Hilton the old Hyatt cylinder in e/Memphis?

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Is the Hilton the old Hyatt cylinder in e/Memphis?

 

Yes, but the Hilton he's talking about is the one that was proposed for downtown near FedExForum. The developers, Royal Phoenix, have had problems gathering enough financing to get the project started, so no one knows if that will happen anytime soon.

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Well the U of M now has a new 55 million dollar nursing building to be consturcted on its south campus.  There are two new apartment communities under construction south of downtown.  There also is a new dorm being constructed at the U of M across the train tracks.  The new totally sustainable community is under construction in Frayser the first 30 homes of about 200.  The Nike factory has also broken ground and is doubling it footprint in raleigh.  Southern college of optometry also has a new classroom addition under construction.  On the fairgrounds the Kroc center opens in a few days it is one of a kind and has a challenge arena unique only to the memphis center I visited with the architects.  Beale street landing is also almost  complete the bottom 2 levels and one of the island platforms is under construction.  wish I could post pics on here not sure how to

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Unfortunately, the short answer to the title of this thread is "NO".  Very little major urban development at all is underway or planned in Memphis. Compared to other cities (especially Nashville) Memphis is years behind.  

 

Granted there are a few things underway and planned, but there is just no comparison to the growth and economic development of other cities.  

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Unfortunately, the short answer to the title of this thread is "NO".  Very little major urban development at all is underway or planned in Memphis. Compared to other cities (especially Nashville) Memphis is years behind.  

 

Granted there are a few things underway and planned, but there is just no comparison to the growth and economic development of other cities.  

Actually check out the pictures im posting in the Memphis construction page.  Nationally Memphis has set a model for urban renewal and redevelopment.  Many larger cities come here to study what we have done.  Most people here however don't document all the neighborhoods via pictures its not that type of community of people.  However I am an architecture student here and I have lived in Nashville for my undergrad degree and I realize the importance of showing what developments are going on in Memphis.  No they aren't the corporate office towers or condos of Nashville but there are still lots of low rise developments being built that fit the more urban characteristics associated with Memphis.  No high rises yet because we are still redeveloping and filling our vast stock of huge older buildings.  The sears crosstown building is a great example.  over 1.5 million square feet funds already committed and 70% leased by some major companies, apartments, and schools.  Will be starting construction by end of year.  The chisca hotel downtown has started construction and will be beautiful.  Most development here is of empty structures which we are doing a good job of filling.  I will try to keep that page updated but there is lots going on in Memphis...............:):shades:

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