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VOL. TMN-7 | NO. 33 | Saturday, August 9, 2014
Weekly Issue

Springing to Life

Memphis buildings dubbed as ‘big empties’ seeing activity

When Ridgeland, Miss.-based development firm the Bryan Co. broke ground on The Horizon condominium tower in 2007, it was at the peak of the housing bubble and optimism from elected officials and Downtown boosters was equally high.

Editorial: Economic Woes Pose Questions for Memphis

It may be gone. But the recession sure took its time in departing after taking a heavy toll on economic development in Memphis. And some of us aren’t sure it has totally left the premises, especially in a city that is watching as other parts of the state are rebounding and recovering at a much quicker pace than Memphis.

EMPHASIS Small Business

Business on Wheels

Food truck owners face unique set of issues as numbers increase

When asked once by a reporter whether he’d consider supplementing his business with a food truck like many of his industry peers, the owner of a popular Midtown restaurant was matter-of-fact in his reply.

Cannon Wright Blount Names Wages as Partner

It might be easy to think of Mike Wages’ line of work as involving stone-faced number-crunchers whose main task involves making sure figures line up correctly, as they focus mostly on gathering and presenting data.

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Levy Dermatology Celebrates Five Years in Memphis

Dr. Alan Levy owns a 5-year-old dermatology practice in Memphis, and to understand why business is booming for him right now, it helps to consider how medical advances are making it possible for people to live longer lives these days.


This week in Memphis history: August 8-14

1993: What would be the city’s last civic drive for a National Football League franchise was taking season ticket pledges with former Green Bay Packers middle linebacker Willie Davis among those in the ownership group, led by Billy Dunavant of Dunavant Enterprises.

Blueprint for the Future

Architecture Inc. celebrates 20 years, looks toward what’s next

It was 1992, and architect Joey Hagan was searching high and low for space for his own office.

Nineteenth Century Club Mansion Could Be Saved

The Union Avenue mansion that housed the Nineteenth Century Club might not meet the wrecking ball after all.

Democratic Divide Widens in Election Results

Democrats have retained their seven-vote majority on the new single-district Shelby County Commission that takes office Sept. 1.

Luttrell: Some Changes Coming in Second Term

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell says there will likely be some “tweaks” to his team and its efforts as he prepares to begin his second and final term as the county chief executive.

Tamp & Tap to Open in East Memphis

One of the newest office buildings in East Memphis has landed a popular local coffee shop and restaurant.

Problem Property

Blighted Main Street building has Downtown Memphis Commission president fuming

The city of Memphis and the Downtown Memphis Commission suffered a stinging setback this week in their quest to rid a key section of Main Street of a deteriorating eyesore, one that has survived multiple attempts to be sold and defied repeated orders to clean up.

New Delta Cuts Reflect Changes at Memphis Airport

Delta Airlines is once again cutting service at Memphis International Airport, eliminating flights from Memphis to Denver and Austin, Texas, in September.

Shelby County Mortgage Market Dips in July

Kathee Villar, a loan officer with Community Mortgage Corp., has worked for the lender for 23 years, and when you’re in that kind of place for that length of time, certain patterns start to repeat themselves.

Graceland Campus Financing Relies on Tight Boundaries

When Elvis Presley Enterprises breaks ground next week on the $75 million, 450-room hotel-resort it will build north of Graceland mansion, it will be the beginning of crossing something off the company’s wish list since Elvis Presley’s mansion opened for tours in the early 1980s.

New Logistics Venture Lands $250,000 Investment

Start Co.’s “Summer of Acceleration” already has proven a success for at least one startup that’s participated in one of the organization’s accelerators this year.

Early Diagnosis

Program targets early prevention, treatment of scoliosis

Of the approximately 7 million people in the United States that have scoliosis (curvature of the spine), most of them are teenagers and children.

Greenway Grants Program Seeks Applicants

Money is available. There just aren’t many people asking for it. “That has been a problem in the past,” said Alice Hudson, director of development for the Tennessee Parks and Greenways Foundation, also known as TennGreen. “So far this year, we’ve only received one application.”

Sales Tax Hike Clears First Hurdle

After lingering for several weeks as the politically charged environment at City Hall has subsided some, the idea of a city sales tax hike to restore funding for health insurance cuts to city employees and retirees is moving. But it may not get very far.

Start of School Features Historic Change

A child ready for his first day of school Monday, Aug. 4, in the new Bartlett City Schools system mistakenly got on a bus bound for Shelby County Schools that ran close to the route he was supposed to take.

City Reviews Ridesharing Policies

The city of Memphis is reviewing policies and procedures related to vehicles for hire after a firestorm related to ridesharing services such as Lyft and Uber erupted earlier this summer.

Neighborhood Health

Cooper-Young fitness studio owner buys up property around him

As the owner of Inbalance Fitness in Cooper-Young, Scott Lebowitz is focused on the physical health of the clients who walk through his doors.

American Marketing Association Memphis Chapter Preps for New Events

The Memphis chapter of the American Marketing Association is gearing up to be a hub of new networking and educational opportunities for local marketing professionals in the city.

Incoming Civil Rights Museum President Seeks Connection

The incoming president of the National Civil Rights Museum remembers a quick and hurried visit to the museum shortly after the debut of an extensive renovation earlier this year.

Synk Brings ‘Rock & Sand’ Model to WKNO

WKNO-TV is airing a business special later this month featuring business educator and coach Michael Synk, who will present a televised version of the “Rock & Sand” business model upon which he’s already built workshops and a book.


Tigers Players, Coaches Say Time is Now for Football Success

Two years ago, the University of Memphis football season began with the unthinkable: a 20-17 home loss to UT Martin.

The Press Box: Mississippi State, Prescott Set High Expectations

Confidence does not always take the predictable path.

Grizzlies Preseason Schedule Includes Cavs

The Memphis Grizzlies’ eight-game preseason schedule has four games at FedExForum, including Oct. 22 against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Tigers Land Forward Calvin Godfrey

As first reported by ESPN.com’s Jeff Goodman, forward Calvin Godfrey is coming to the University of Memphis as a transfer from Southern University.

Tigers Look to Build Chemistry on Canada Trip

What Tigers sophomore Nick King knows about Canada can be explained in two words: Andrew Wiggins – the Toronto native who was the No. 1 pick in the recent NBA Draft.

Pera: Development, Re-Signing Gasol Keys to Success

Grizzlies controlling owner Robert Pera introduced new additions to the team’s front office during a press conference Friday, Aug. 1, at FedExForum, and took questions from reporters. But mainly he delivered the message that the franchise’s path to contending for a championship will come through player development and not free agency.

Tigers’ Progression Dependent on Solid Defense

When the Tigers’ 3-9 season was done, there were not a lot of statistics to point to with pride. But the University of Memphis did finish the 2013 college football season ranked 12th nationally against the run, and a respectable 39th nationally in total defense.


Johnson to Lead Pink Palace Fundraising Efforts

Cathi Johnson has joined the Pink Palace Family of Museums as director of development. In her new role, she’ll design, implement and manage the museum system’s fundraising efforts, including individual and corporate gifts and sponsorships, grant writing, capital funds and planned giving.


Carlisle Corp. Buys Sharky’s Property

6201 Poplar Ave., Memphis, TN 38119, Sale Amount: $2.9 million -
An affiliate of Carlisle Corp. has paid $2.9 million for the recently closed Sharky’s Gulf Grill at 6201 Poplar Ave.


Local Movers Hit the Big Leagues

Steven Reed, Jeff Coletta and Jonathan Greer met as children while playing youth football at the Germantown Youth Athletic Association, igniting a life-long bond that remains to this day.


Paying Attention

ON MY WATCH. AND YOURS. Mrs. Parker tends her corner of the garden at Trezevant with loving dedication, looking up from her planting and fussing with a gloved wave to Nora and me as we walk by of a morning. A couple of years ago, she presented us with a bag of ginger lily roots. Hers was taking up too much room, and she didn’t want it to spread any more.

Lessons Learned From Millennials

Much of the research about employment suggests older workers are waiting longer to retire. This means many seasoned professionals are also still job searching. And, many of those are struggling to find their way.

How Much Should I Save for Retirement?

Ray’s take: Saving for retirement. It’s something we are all aware of and working on regularly. But how much do you need to save for retirement?

Asia Feels Boost From US GDP

Yippee, GDP! Last week, the U.S. government reported that GDP in the second quarter grew 4 percent and revised the first-quarter number upward from -2.9 percent to -2.1 percent. U.S. equity markets celebrated briefly and then became seriously fearful of Federal Reserve inflation countermeasures.

Rail House Mystery

Editor’s note: First in a three-part series. If you’re passing through Aberdeen, N.C., you should have no trouble finding Railhouse Brewery on East South Street. Moore County’s only microbrewery stands in the middle of downtown, just a few feet from the train track.

Brand Lessons from Apple

The essence of a brand isn’t so much about rationale arguments; instead, it’s how it makes the market feel emotionally. So believed the late Steve Jobs.

An Interview With Judy Davis, Part Two

“I did not recruit leadership, instead I embraced leadership.” This is what we learned from Judy Davis, membership outreach manager at the Metal Museum in Memphis.

The Power of Unplugging

I am returning from a vacation on the Forgotten Coast, a cape wedged in between the sea and a bay. The best part of the location is that my smartphone connection did not work.

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PROPERTY SALES 80 401 13,843
MORTGAGES 99 439 16,005
BUILDING PERMITS 233 998 28,755
BANKRUPTCIES 49 276 8,926

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The Memphis News: Business, politics, and the public interest.