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Rural King

Elvis's Graceland to be overhauled to the tune of $250 million

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CKX, owner of Elvis Presley Enterprises, has a very interesting story up on MSNBC about its ambitious plans on overhauling and modernizing the Graceland properties to the tune of $250 million dollars. A new and enlarged "Heartbreak Hotel", convention center, and high-tech museum are the key components of the project, with the aim of not just revitalizing the property, but of the entire area's commercial corridors and streetscapes. The chairman of CKX stated he is looking for state and local help in securing road and utilities upgrades for the area, in particular Elvis Presley Blvd., to help no only improve the redevelopment of his companies properties, but of the entire corridor.

Sillerman went on to state he did not want Graceland to be an "island" rather he wanted it to be the catalyst for the right kind of revistalization of the commercial corridors", which IMO is one of the best lines I have heard from a developer in a long time.

This all sounds great, as it really sounds as if CKX and its chairman really understands the future viability and growth of their Graceland property is tied directly the economic and urban health of its neighborhood and the commercial corridors that fed into it.

Whats everybody else think about these ambitous and far-reaching plans?

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OMG!! Very ambitious and the very thing that is needed. I can't wait to see renderings of the overhaul.

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I think it makes sense to upgrade the visitor and museum facilities, and perhaps the Heartbreak Hotel could evolve into a mini-Gaylord, and maybe we can get some sort of ampitheater that would open opportunities for cross-promotion with American Idol (another CKX property) and other possibilities. I'd love to see the streetscape improvements materialize, and with the other area businesses on board, this is an important point in that area's history -- a point where its direction can change, it can create an identity distinct and unique in the region. There appears to be a all the ingredients for a synergy among major players in the area. Hopefully they can come up with a broad, world-class development strategy that they all agree upon, that reduces crime, gets rid of the seedy establishments, turns it tourist and business friendly.

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I'm suprised they haven't come up with an Elvis-themed casino. Elvis + Casino = match made in heaven

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^ Thats true. Elvis was born in Mississippi, and the the Magnolia State has casinos - so it seems like a good match that Harrah's or some other firm would have jumped on by now.

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I'm suprised they haven't come up with an Elvis-themed casino. Elvis + Casino = match made in heaven

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I have felt for years that the Graceland area has MASSIVE potential to be a showpiece for the entire city. There should be a line of hotels and fine restaurants coming from Brooks Road leading down to Graceland and the speed limit should be reduced to 25MPH and make the entire area pedestrian friendly

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This is much needed, and will make the surrounding area much more pleasing to the eye. This plan could also attract more hotels around the area which would also help the airport out.

I wonder how large the convention center will be and what it looks like.

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There won't be any convention center, but a Convention Hotel that can hold conventions. I assume it'll be pretty big considering it's going to have convention space and is going to be 500 or more rooms. I think the original poster who started this thread actually meant a convention hotel and a visitor center, which is part of the new museum expansion. I can't wait to see what the drawings will look like. Hopefully we will see them soon.

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I think the original poster who started this thread actually meant a convention hotel and a visitor center, which is part of the new museum expansion.

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Wow! This story is making it to the world news now. It's been on news reports from LA to the UK. This is going to do some big time wonders for that part of town. They're saying think Elvis World, something like a Disney resort. And now I am hearing rumors of an Elvis theme park possible for the Whitehaven area. They're calling it a "secret plan" with the possibility of the entire surrounding neighborhood being bought up by Sillerman. Hmm sounds interesting.

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There seemed to be a conflict between Marshall and Soden. Was Marshall speaking out of over-ebullience, out of turn? Or is there a rift with Soden's vision? Seems like Soden and Sillerman should be on the same page...

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I noticed that too. It sounded to me as if Soden was hiding something.

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Man, I hope this thing gets off the ground. It would do wonders for Memphis' economy. Imagine other developments this could create. More hotels, restaurants, businesses, and shops for the area..Since I am from the Whitehaven area, its very exciting to see it in discussions of major development.

Nike in Frayser, a potential major overhaul in Whitehaven, and the airport region. Nice to see these areas receiving attention.

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Man, I hope this thing gets off the ground. It would do wonders for Memphis' economy. Imagine other developments this could create. More hotels, restaurants, businesses, and shops for the area..Since I am from the Whitehaven area, its very exciting to see it in discussions of major development.

Nike in Frayser, a potential major overhaul in Whitehaven, and the airport region. Nice to see these areas receiving attention.

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^You're right - there's a lot of good stuff going on, and don't forget about the Winchester group too.

I wish there were some way to link Tunica and Graceland together - sorta like a package deal. It seems like both cater at some level to retirees and boomers.

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I don't know if this has already been posted but I found this interesting article, which is dated back in Sept. of 07', on the Memphis Daily News website stating Memphis as a long haul market. It was interesting to read that a man by the name of Bill Sporano - President of California-based Better Buildings & Apartments LLC- is looking to relocate his business and family from The Bay Area to open up shop here in Memphis in March.

I am pretty excited to hear an outsider so eager to rebuild the blighted areas within the Whitehaven and even the Frayser area. The guy already purchased the Birches Townhomes on the corner of Winchester and Graceland and he also looking to acquire other properties in need of rebuilding. More will catch on to the Aerotropolis concept surrounding the Whitehaven area and new Nike Distribution Center in Frayser and hopefully they will see the vast land in those areas as lucractive. But all of this will take time, no doubt. I really hope that all of this comes together in my lifetime, I'm 24 now.

Rardy, is this the Winchester group that you were referring to?

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I thought I would start a new thread regarding the upcoming plans for Graceland and Whitehaven in Memphis. As a fan of Elvis, I am stoked over the thought of a new attraction replacing the current outdated cheap looking setup that they have now. I heard about a really cool attraction in Orlando called City Walk as part of the Universal Studios theme park. It's a retail and entertainment complex of themed style restaurants and shops. Bob Sillerman is planning to go all out and redevelop the entire area around Graceland into a tourist attraction on par with Disney. He's reportedly bought up homes behind and around the mansion. He wants a tourist attraction that will triple the average tourism at Graceland and have visitors to stay for more than a day or two and turn it into a resort like Disney. He is planning for an entertainment complex, retail and shopping, dining, and even an outdoor amphitheater. All part of a $250 million or more project. Obviously whatever he's planning will be a massive redevelopment for that price. So I am wondering if he is planning to build something in the lines of a City Walk-Memphis style in the area across from Graceland that will be about 60+ acres of open space available. Jack Soden has been quoted as calling the plans "a Beale Street where you can take the kids". And that is just exactly what City Walk is. Live entertainment and retail and clubs.

Here's a link to City Walk. Something like this would be superb as part of the plans and would really blend Elvis and Memphis' musical heritage together in style!

<a href='http://www.urbanplanet.org/forums/ipb_seo.php?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.universalorlando.com%2Fcw_index.html' rel='nofollow' target="_blank" onclick="java script:urchinTracker('/outgoing/www_universalorlando_com');">http://www.universalorlando.com/cw_index.html</a>

----------------------------------------------------

Moderator's Note: The thread mentioned was merged into to this thread to avoid duplication of topics and discussion in the forum.

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I don't know if this has already been posted but I found this interesting article, which is dated back in Sept. of 07', on the Memphis Daily News website stating Memphis as a long haul market. It was interesting to read that a man by the name of Bill Sporano - President of California-based Better Buildings & Apartments LLC- is looking to relocate his business and family from The Bay Area to open up shop here in Memphis in March.

I am pretty excited to hear an outsider so eager to rebuild the blighted areas within the Whitehaven and even the Frayser area. The guy already purchased the Birches Townhomes on the corner of Winchester and Graceland and he also looking to acquire other properties in need of rebuilding. More will catch on to the Aerotropolis concept surrounding the Whitehaven area and new Nike Distribution Center in Frayser and hopefully they will see the vast land in those areas as lucractive. But all of this will take time, no doubt. I really hope that all of this comes together in my lifetime, I'm 24 now.

Rardy, is this the Winchester group that you were referring to?

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UPDATE on the Graceland area plans. It was on Fox13's site that the City council was to support the plans this week and that the cost of the project is now going to be much more than the $250 million originally anticipated. They're not saying how much it will cost but that it will NOT cause a tax hike or taxes being raised at all. That should be the main issue and shouldn't set this thing back at all. It is being referred to as the single most largest private investment in memphis city history! The project is going to include a massive hotel, a new convention center, a new walkway to Graceland, a streetscape and gateway, and new Elvis-related museums and attractions around Graceland mansion.

Groundbreaking could begin as early as February 2008!!! :w00t::thumbsup:

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UPDATE on the Graceland area plans. It was on Fox13's site that the City council was to support the plans this week and that the cost of the project is now going to be much more than the $250 million originally anticipated. They're not saying how much it will cost but that it will NOT cause a tax hike or taxes being raised at all. That should be the main issue and shouldn't set this thing back at all. It is being referred to as the single most largest private investment in memphis city history! The project is going to include a massive hotel, a new convention center, a new walkway to Graceland, a streetscape and gateway, and new Elvis-related museums and attractions around Graceland mansion.

Groundbreaking could begin as early as February 2008!!! :w00t::thumbsup:

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