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memphian

Center City

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I was watching the news last night and heard them referring to Downtown as "Center City." With all of the new development going on I kind of like the idea of calling it Center City. Kind of gives the area a fresh image to work with. Is this a new thing or am I just too new to Memphis to know any better?

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I don't know. I guess I'm a traditionalist, and just like plain old "Downtown". For example, imho, I think it's dumb for Charlotte to have referred to its downtown as "uptown" (I think that was a farily recent development).

"Center City" sounds like putting on airs, and Memphis isn't the kind of place that puts on airs. :P

I think the news might have picked up on "Center City" because of the Center City Commission is a player in downtown development and uses the term downtown to encompass the medical center, which is a stretch to most natives, even though it's only half a mile away. Plus, the CCC runs a useful website about all things downtown:

http://www.downtownmemphis.com/#

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I agree with sleepy. I like calling it downtown more than center city. Imagine an NBA announcer saying while returning form commercial "Beautiful aerial shots of central city Memphis" :blink: or a tourist saying "I like your downtown" and a Memphian responding "You mean the center city?"

Even though downtown center in a symbolic sense, literally its way off to the west so maybe East Memphis could be Center City even tho I like the name now. Even if they did change the name, I doubt it would stick. Too much PR for "Definitely Downtown: The heart and soul of Memphis"

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Yeah, I'm more of a "downtown" kind of guy, not too keen on "City Center". Most everybody would refer to it as downtown anyway, so why call it something different?

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I always liked the way they did it in New Orleans.

Everything downriver of Canal Street was downtown. Everything upriver of Canal Street was uptown, with the exception of the skyscraper area which was the CBD.

For example, the destroyed area of the lower 9th Ward was downtown.

I lived in downtown New Orleans--the 7th Ward and the upper 9th for decades, yet lived a good 2 miles from the skyscrapers and businesses of the CBD, in an area of nothing but old 1 and 2 story 19th century rowhouses. But when anyone asked me where I lived, I always said, "downtown".

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As Bears pointed out, Downtown Memphis isn't really the center of the city, so calling it Center City doesn't make geographic sense. Downtown makes sense because it's "down on the river bank" and, besides, "downtown" is the more traditional name for a city's central business district. It is also the usual name for a city's historical origin. Even though it's easy to think of the whole island of Manhattan as one big downtown, when New Yorkers say "downtown" they are referring to Lower Manhattan, the area surrounding Wall Street where the original Dutch settlement of New Amsterdam was located around 1630.

We have a downtown and midtown. If we were going to have an "uptown", I would say that would be East Memphis, along Poplar from Perkins out to Ridgeway. Topographically, that would make sense too because the elevation there is higher than much of the rest of the city.

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I do see the point of the topic. Downtown, to me, is anything within the bounds of North Parkway, Danny Thomas, and I-55. That would include what we now refer to as South Main, SoFo (I dislike this nomenclature bigtime), and Uptown (Pyramid area). Arguably, Downtown includes Mud Island, no? So the point is, what do we call the area in between? Right now it is the Central Business District.

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I do see the point of the topic. Downtown, to me, is anything within the bounds of North Parkway, Danny Thomas, and I-55. That would include what we now refer to as South Main, SoFo (I dislike this nomenclature bigtime), and Uptown (Pyramid area). Arguably, Downtown includes Mud Island, no? So the point is, what do we call the area in between? Right now it is the Central Business District.

Oh yeah - I completely forgot that we already have something called Uptown. Duh.

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I do see the point of the topic. Downtown, to me, is anything within the bounds of North Parkway, Danny Thomas, and I-55. That would include what we now refer to as South Main, SoFo (I dislike this nomenclature bigtime), and Uptown (Pyramid area). Arguably, Downtown includes Mud Island, no? So the point is, what do we call the area in between? Right now it is the Central Business District.

I definitely agree that SoFo sounds ridiculous.

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I definitely agree that SoFo sounds ridiculous.

I'm not a fan of any of these imposters of SoHo. SoBro in Nashville is absurd...SoFo in Memphis is ludicrous...seriously, can we be original? The New South is supposed to be its own unique place...so why are we ripping an area in NYC? Not very Southern of us. Anyway...for progression, I like the idea of calling it Center City...although, that's what Philly calls its downtown area...so maybe something tweaked.

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I'm not a fan of any of these imposters of SoHo. SoBro in Nashville is absurd...SoFo in Memphis is ludicrous...seriously, can we be original? The New South is supposed to be its own unique place...so why are we ripping an area in NYC? Not very Southern of us. Anyway...for progression, I like the idea of calling it Center City...although, that's what Philly calls its downtown area...so maybe something tweaked.

Or LoDo in Denver . . . (Area around Coors Field)

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A lot of those terms--the SoBro's and SoFo's--are just slick real estate packaging. You know, some area of town that's a dump that someone gives a quickie name makeover.

I saw it in New Orleans in the mid-seventies when my old neighborhood, which was just the Upper Ninth Ward got rechristened "Bywater", and then underwent gentrification.

Thank god the powers that be didn't name the South Main district SoMA.

And "Uptown" Memphis, what the heck is that? I guess it sounds better than saying you live at the old Hurt Village Project. :lol:

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I'm with the traditionalists. I like the phrase "downtown." It just gives a sense of place. I must admit I like the SoBro part of Nashville, but you're right, it's a bit silly. I've just heard it too long now and have adopted it. Charlotte's insistence on "Uptown" just grates my last nerve.

Subsitutue ANY of the "new" words in Petula Clark's "Downtown" and you'll see what we mean. Downtown is downtown. Sing along now. :)

Petula Clark

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hmm... I never really thought about how silly SoFo sounds. In Memphis' language SoFo means So 4 :lol: (math teacher always gave us a hard time for saying fo instead of four). I don't think Memphians will call it that. Do you guys have an alternative name? I'd rather just call it just the Fedex Forum area.

OT: Heres some pictures of Fedex Forum. I like the look from a distance but IMO the diffrent color "bricks" aren't very attractive.

http://www.fedexforum.com/fedexforum/galle...orum/index.html

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This one wasn't directly on that link, but came up while scrolling through the pictures:

http://www.fedexforum.com/fedexforum/galle...ages/84348.html

I thought it was a great view of Downtown, Center City, City Center, Uptown, DoTo, The CC, or whatever people decide to call it...

I linked the wrong picture--The pic of the southside of downtown was good too, but I wanted the one looking back toward the north. Try it again.

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Thats a picture of the southern end of downtown. Isn't the Westin, Vue, and One Beale going to be built somewhere in that picture? Can somebody photoshop them in?

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Thats a picture of the southern end of downtown. Isn't the Westin, Vue, and One Beale going to be built somewhere in that picture? Can somebody photoshop them in?

I don't know how to do that, but the Vue site has some photoshopped pics which I'd posted before. Just click on the pics. (be patient, takes a few seconds to load):

http://www.thevueonmain.com/

hmm... I never really thought about how silly SoFo sounds. In Memphis' language SoFo means So 4 :lol: (math teacher always gave us a hard time for saying fo instead of four). I don't think Memphians will call it that. Do you guys have an alternative name? I'd rather just call it just the Fedex Forum area.

OT: Heres some pictures of Fedex Forum. I like the look from a distance but IMO the diffrent color "bricks" aren't very attractive.

I don't know what they could call that area. I suspect "SouthEnd" has been trademarked since that development is a consortium of a number of private developers who banded together to specifically market the South End. Seems to me it's really part of the South Main area--as much as Tennessee St. or Front St.

I think those building tiles look like 1973 fake brick kitchen linoleum.

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