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Editorial Results (free)

1. The Week Ahead: May 21-27 -

Good morning, Memphis! School ends this week and the long-awaited Explore Bike Share bicycle stations open across the city. The 600 bikes for rent will enable residents and visitors to explore the city, ride to work, visit local landmarks and get some exercise without polluting the air.

2. Three Projects Get Green Light from EDGE Board -

The Economic Development Growth Engine for Memphis and Shelby County approved a trio of projects that could create as many as 255 new jobs and retain nearly 300 more during a busy Wednesday, May 16, agenda. 

3. Grant Awarded For Auto Museum -

A facade improvement grant for a new automotive museum near Sun Studio was approved by the Downtown Memphis Commission’s Center City Development Corp. on Wednesday, May 16, clearing the way for Richard Vining’s $1.4 million renovation project at 645 Marshall Ave. to begin.

4. Memphis to Rebid Cook Convention Center Project -

The city will be rebidding the $175 million renovation of the Memphis Cook Convention Center, Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said Tuesday, May 15.

5. Last Word: Being Fourth, Barbecue and Davos on the Delta and Steamboat Exit -

Not. Top. Three. The Grizz got the fourth pick of the NBA draft in Tuesday’s draft lottery in Chicago. Grizz president of business operations Jason Wexler had probably the best reaction on Twitter: “So for the next 5 weeks we are in a window where everyone can be wrong and everyone can be right at the same time.” The memory of Hasheem Thabeet’s arrival in Memphis looms large in this uncertainty and draft day is the only thing that can make that memory fade. At least for now, that image just got a bit sharper. And it becomes more vivid every time between now and the draft in June that you start a sentence with “The Grizz could still…”

6. Convention Center Overhaul and Renovation to be Rebid -

The city will be rebidding the $175 million renovation of the Memphis Cook Convention Center, Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said Tuesday, May 15.

7. Events -

The Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest returns Wednesday through Saturday, May 16-19, in Tom Lee Park Downtown. Among the highlights are the annual Ms. Piggie Idol Contest; the Kingsford Tour of Champions, which gives the public a chance to taste and judge barbecue from competing teams; the Cooker Caravan, a free guided tour of some of the best competition teams; live music; and more. Visit memphisinmay.org for tickets and a daily schedule.

8. Commission Reappoints Bolton As Adviser, Questions His Role -

Shelby County commissioners reappointed former commissioner Julian Bolton as their legislative policy adviser Monday, May 14, sending his reappointment, effective to the end of September, to Mayor Mark Luttrell, who vetoed an earlier version of the appointment in April.

9. Commission Reappoints Bolton As Advisor Amid Questions About His Role -

Shelby County commissioners reappointed former commissioner Julian Bolton as their legislative policy advisor Monday, May 14, sending the reappointment to the end of September to county mayor Mark Luttrell who vetoed an earlier version in April.

10. Events -

The Memphis Jewish Community Center will screen “Besa: The Promise” Tuesday, May 15, at 7 p.m. at MJCC, 6560 Poplar Ave. The film weaves Albania’s heroism in World War II through the journeys of two men. The screening is part of the monthlong Toward Justice: A City-Wide Upstanders’ Project. Cost is free. Visit jccmemphis.org for details.

11. Corporate Leaders Are True Partners -

“What can we do to help?” That was the question asked by a corporate representative at a conference we attended last week.

We were in Winston-Salem, participating in the State of Black North Carolina conference. We fell in love with the people, energy and positive, forward thinking. We were surrounded by people – including high school students and senior citizens – all of whom were asking questions, offering solutions, sharing history and strategizing.

12. Last Word: Mimeo Move, Food Fight and Sundquist for Blackburn -

There aren’t any renderings just yet of what a second convention center hotel with the 100 North Main Building as its centerpiece would look like. That’s probably a good thing for now because some of the specs and the footprint are still in flux. The developers of the proposed convention center hotel said as the weekend began that they plan a 600 room hotel and a complex that includes two 30-story towers in addition to the 37-story tall 100 North Main Building – the tallest building in the city. And the foot print will likely jump Second Street to take in the vacant Jefferson Plaza building. Here is the update and some perspective on how we got to this point.

13. Week Ahead: May 14-20 -

Go hog wild, Memphis! One of the most anticipated community events of the year kicks off this week when Tom Lee Park again becomes ground zero for the Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest. Teams from around the world will try to win over judges with their savory renditions of all things pig. It will be a lip-smackin’ good time win or lose, though. 

14. AutoZone Expanding Downtown, One Commerce Square Hits Market -

40 S. Main St.

Memphis, TN 38103

Property: One Commerce Square Building 

Seller: Memphis Commerce Square Partners LLC

Details: One Commerce Square, the fourth-largest building in Memphis, has hit the market.

15. Second Convention Center Hotel Has Footprint Beyond City’s Tallest Building -

After four years as an emptied out eyesore and lots of promises with very little follow up, the city’s tallest building is at the center of a tentative deal to make it the second convention center hotel.

16. Events -

The Memphis Jewish Community Center will screen “Besa: The Promise” Tuesday, May 15, at 7 p.m. at MJCC, 6560 Poplar Ave. The film weaves Albania’s heroism in World War II through the journeys of two men. The screening is part of the monthlong Toward Justice: A City-Wide Upstanders’ Project. Cost is free. Visit jccmemphis.org for details.

17. Motor Museum Slated For Edge District -

A new nonprofit museum geared toward automotive history and preservation could be coming to the Memphis Medical District.

Located at 645 Marshall Ave., The Edge Motor Museum is a part of a $1.4 million renovation project Richard Vining is planning in the Edge neighborhood bordering the Medical District. Vining also owns Vining Legacy Management, a bill pay service specializing in assisting seniors and widows.

18. Convention Center Hotel Footprint Bigger Than 100 North Main -

Details of a tentative plan for a second convention center hotel at the 100 North Main Building show the conversion of the 53-year old skyscraper is just part of a plan that would have a larger footprint, taking in more Downtown real estate.

19. Last Word: Singletary to Memphis, County Budget Notes and Buying NIN Tickets -

It’s not a done deal yet. But there is at least the framework of a plan for the city’s tallest building. The city has signed a letter of intent with the current owners to convert the 100 North Main Building to a convention center hotel with retail, meeting space and a parking garage with a timeline to have this built and open for business by the end of 2022 – two years after the $175 million renovation of the Memphis Cook Convention Center is to be completed.

20. Events -

The Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest returns Wednesday through Saturday, May 16-19, in Tom Lee Park Downtown. Among the highlights are the annual Ms. Piggie Idol Contest; the Kingsford Tour of Champions, which gives the public a chance to taste and judge barbecue from competing teams; the Cooker Caravan, a free guided tour of some of the best competition teams; live music; and more. Visit memphisinmay.org for tickets and a daily schedule.

21. Rural Tennessee Fighting for Its Prosperity -

For many Tennesseans the pain and financial loss of the 2008 recession has faded.

The state’s unemployment rate is the lowest in the Southeast United States, 3.4 percent in March. Household income and the state’s gross domestic product are at their highest points, and Tennessee continues to attract “high-quality” jobs. (“High-quality” jobs are those that pay higher than the county median wage.)

22. Grocery Wars -

For a typical consumer, a trip to the grocery store might mean little more than a quick run to pick up essentials like bread and milk. Cart filled. Self-checkout. Back out the sliding doors. So mundane, none of it is given a second thought once you’re back in the car with your purchases.

23. 100 North Main To Become Convention Center Hotel Via Letter of Intent -

The city of Memphis has signed a letter of intent for the redevelopment of the city’s tallest building as a convention center hotel.

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland announced the letter of intent for the 100 North Main Building Thursday, May 10, with THM Memphis Acquisitions LLC and Loews Hotel Holding Corporation.

24. Motor Museum Slated For Edge District -

A new nonprofit museum geared toward automotive history and preservation could be coming to the Memphis Medical District.

Located at 645 Marshall Ave., The Edge Motor Museum is a part of a $1.4 million renovation project Richard Vining is planning in the Edge neighborhood bordering the Medical District. Vining also owns Vining Legacy Management, a bill pay service specializing in assisting seniors and widows.

25. New County Leaders Face Big Funding Decisions -

The new Shelby County mayor and County Commission elected in August will have some major budget decisions to make once they take office Sept. 1, including a new Regional One Health Center building that could cost more to build than the $250 million FedExForum and a permanent source of county funding for the universal prekindergarten effort.

26. Motor Museum Slated for Edge District -

A new non-profit museum geared towards automotive history and preservation could be coming to the Medical District.

Located at 645 Marshall Avenue, The Edge Motor Museum is a part of a $1.4 million renovation project in the Edge neighborhood by Richard Vining, who also owns Vining Legacy Management, a bill pay service specializing in assisting seniors and widows.

27. Events -

Memphis Botanic Garden hosts its Food Truck Garden Party: Pirates & Princesses on Wednesday, May 9, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at MBG, 750 Cherry Road. Enjoy live music, cash bar, fun in the Play Zone and food trucks. Cover is $5 for members and $10 for nonmembers (includes one drink). Buy tickets at memphisbotanicgarden.com/foodtruck or at the gate.

28. Strickland: City Given Enough For Entertainment -

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland says he would support some kind of incentives for the manufacturing facility Graceland wants to open in Whitehaven. But not if it’s linked to a greater share of city and county property tax revenue for a 6,200-seat arena Graceland also wants to build.

29. Week Ahead: May 7-13 -

Happy Monday. This weekend is the one between the Beale Street Music Festival and the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest, but there are still Memphis in May International events to attend. Great month to be in Memphis!

30. Our Kids are Drowning -

LIFELINE. Almost 40 years ago, I was on the first board of the Ira Samelson Jr. Boys & Girls Club down the street from Treadwell School. We had taken over a YMCA that had a pool – the first pool in the club system. We brought kids in from all over the city to learn to swim, to keep from drowning if they got in deep water.

31. Nashville Voters Reject $5.4 Billion Mass Transit Plan -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Nashville voters on Tuesday overwhelmingly rejected a plan to pay for a $5.4 billion mass transit system that called for a new light rail system, expanded bus routes and the building of a downtown underground tunnel.

32. Harris, Lenoir to Battle for County Mayor -

Republican David Lenoir and Democrat Lee Harris will meet in the Aug. 2 county general election to decide who will be the next Shelby County mayor. Lenoir and Harris won their respective primaries easily Tuesday, May 1, 2018.

33. County Commission Urges Haslam to Veto Immigration Bill -

Shelby County commissioners approved a resolution Monday, April 30, urging Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam to veto a bill that would require local and state law enforcement agencies to work with federal immigration and customs enforcement agents on immigration matters.

34. Last Word: Trolleys Roll, Primary Election Day and The Rise of South City -

MATA CEO Gary Rosenfeld likes to joke that the new trolleys are quieter since the transit authority decided to change from using square wheels. Transit humor. They really are quieter. And that may be because MATA wasn’t doing much of anything in the way of maintenance on them four years ago and even less in the way of record keeping when a second trolley car burst into flames causing MATA to shut down everything it ran on rails. So the trolley that rolled out of the MATA barn on North Main Street Monday morning and into service was symbolic of more than getting a trolley or three ready for service. It was about building a new system around the operation of the trolleys.

35. County Commission Urges Haslam Veto of Immigration Bill -

Shelby County commissioners approved a resolution Monday, April 30, urging Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam to veto a bill that would require local and state law enforcement agencies to work with federal immigration agents on immigration matters.

36. Young Says Construction About to Begin on South City Residential -

South City is about to begin construction east of Danny Thomas Boulevard and the road to construction has had some unexpected turns. “There’s a certain amount of anxiety when you talk about these big projects because people don’t know whether it’s actually going to happen or not,” Memphis Housing and Community Development Division director Paul Young said on the WKNO/Channel 10 program “Behind The Headlines.”

37. Gibson Building Owners to Partner with Orgel Family -

The new owners of the Gibson Guitar Factory building in Downtown Memphis have partnered with a prominent local family to bring the prime parcel of land back to life. 

On Monday, April 30, New York-based real estate investment firm Somera Road Inc., which purchased the 150,000-plus-square-foot building and showroom located at 145 Lt. George W. Lee Ave. for $14.4 million in January, announced it would be partnering with Billy and Benjamin Orgel’s Orgel Family LP to redevelop the guitar factory.

38. Events -

The Shelby County Mayor’s Office and the Division of Community Services will host a community meeting to gather community feedback on the development of a youth assessment and resource center Monday, April 30, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Knowledge Quest (Universal Parenting Place), 990 College Park Drive, suite 104. Visit shelbycountytn.gov/calendar.aspx for details.

39. Graceland Political Push Faces First Test at County Commission -

In introducing Joel Weinshanker Thursday, April 27, at a town hall meeting in Whitehaven, Graceland CEO Jack Soden talked about Weinshanker’s “appetite for risk.” The group of 150 people in the theater at Guest House at Graceland soon got a good look at Weinshanker’s emerging plan to go public in a big way with one of the city’s most sensitive economic development issues – the city and county noncompete agreement with the Memphis Grizzlies that keeps the city and county from funding any 5,000-seat and up arena that might compete with FedExForum.

40. EDGE PILOTs Outperform Minority Spending Requirements, Report Says -

The Economic Growth Development Engine for Memphis and Shelby County released a PILOT Recipient Spending report that details its certified local, minority and women-owned business spending.

EDGE president and CEO Reid Dulberger presented the report, which tracks PILOT spending from the organization’s first full calendar year in 2012 until the end of 2016, to the EDGE board Thursday, April 27.

41. EDGE PILOTs Outperform Minority Spending Requirements, Report Says -

The Economic Growth Development Engine for Memphis and Shelby County released a PILOT Recipient Spending report that details its certified local, minority and women-owned business spending.

EDGE president and CEO Reid Dulberger presented the report, which tracks PILOT spending from the organization’s first full calendar year in 2012 until the end of 2016, to the EDGE board Thursday, April 27.

42. Events -

“Toward Justice: A City-Wide Upstanders’ Project” kicks off with a keynote by longtime civil rights leader Bob Zellner on Wednesday, May 2, at 7 p.m. at the Memphis Jewish Community Center, 6560 Poplar Ave. The monthlong “Toward Justice” project is presented by nearly a dozen local organizations and features exhibits, installations and more. All events are free and will be held at MJCC. Visit jccmemphis.org for a schedule.

43. Last Word: Graceland Offensive, Mural Lawsuit, and a TNReady Encore -

It’s on in The Haven. Graceland’s managing partner, Joel Weinshanker, is looking to turn out Whitehaven residents in support of Graceland’s plans for a 5,000 to 6,000 seat arena and in the process a showdown over just what the city and county noncompete for FedExForum means. During a townhall meeting at Guest House Thursday evening, Weinshanker made his case to about 150 Whitehaven residents and around eight or nine candidates in this election year. And he said the chief problem is Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland won’t talk to him about projects he says will open up Whitehaven for future economic development and prosperity.

44. Strickland Responds to Graceland Push for Arena Approval -

UPDATE: Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland responded Friday, April 27, to comments made by Graceland Holdings managing partner Joel Weinshanker Thursday evening at a town hall meeting about Graceland's expansion plans. Here is the statement in full.

45. RegionSmart Summit Brings Out Best of the Mid-South -

Though the Mid-South is made up of a many different neighborhoods, cities and even states, many of the ties that bind the region together were on display at the third annual RegionSmart Summit.

The Thursday, April 26 conference held at the Halloran Center for the Performing Arts & Education, featured a convening of the are area’s mayors followed by a trio of national speakers all with the intent to strengthen the intra-regional dialogue.

46. Downtown Designs -

A pair of proposed developments could change the look of two well-known Downtown areas: Mississippi River Park on Riverside Drive and the neighborhood around the National Civil Rights Museum.

One of the first tangible efforts to reimagine the Fourth Bluff area of Downtown Memphis is taking a step forward as the city has submitted plans to use adapted shipping containers as open-air dining pavilions within Mississippi River Park, located on Riverside near the Tennessee Welcome Center.

47. Last Word: Last Day of Early Voting, Senate Poll and Legislature Goes to Overtime -

The last day of early voting before the May 1 election day is Thursday. And the turnout count through Wednesday has eclipsed the total early voting turnout in this same set of elections in 2010 and 2014. You can find a list of early voting locations and the hours at www.shelbyvote.com, the website of the Shelby County Election Commission. The winners on election night next Tuesday advance to the August county general election.

48. A Work Home Found -

Growing up in Texas, just south of Houston, Michael Phillips always had been around people speaking Spanish. He took Spanish classes (and German, too) in high school and always liked the language.

49. Graceland Map Shows New Arena, Convention Center and Manufacturing Center -

A new map of plans for the Graceland campus in Whitehaven shows two “exhibit buildings” of 80,000 square feet each on either side of a “live event center” Elvis Presley Enterprises wants to build on the western border behind its Elvis Presley’s Memphis entertainment complex.

50. Last Word: Reading Early Voting Tea Leaves, Corker Qualifies and New Carrot -

This should be the week that the Tennessee Legislature adjourns and state Senators and state Representatives return to their districts to begin campaigning in earnest for the August primaries and the November general election beyond that. The only hold-up to adjournment this week would be any more tremors surrounding education policy, specifically the TNReady test debacle of last week.

51. The Week Ahead: April 23-29 -

Good morning, Memphis. There’s no better way to start off your week than hearing the beautiful sounds of a world famous boys’ choir from London inside a historic Memphis church Downtown. And the concert is free!

52. Opioid Litigation, FedExForum NonCompete Top Local Law Developments -

Here are some of the legal issues making news in recent months.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery says lawsuits by local prosecutors over the opioid epidemic are complicating his efforts to reach a multistate settlement with drug companies. In response, the prosecutors, who represent about half of Tennessee's counties, say local communities lose out when lawsuits like theirs are rolled into one settlement.

53. Last Word: TNReady Blinks Again, Gov. Debate Thoughts and Mud Island's Museum -

There was a point Thursday morning during the troubled TNReady testing at some Tennessee school districts when there was a “brief” slow down in the online testing, according to the Tennessee Education commissioner’s office. By noon that had been resolved and more than 250,000 completed tests had been submitted since testing began Monday. One can only imagine what some of the thoughts were in the office during the slow down and the gap between how long the slow down seemed and how long it actually was.

54. Richards Focused on Customers and Employees -

Chris Richards knows the value of a chance encounter.

As a 20-year-old sophomore at the University of Iowa, Richards traveled with her college roommate to Memphis, intending to stay for the summer and explore a new city.

55. EDGE Approves Trio of Tax Abatements -

The Economic Development Growth Engine for Memphis and Shelby County approved a trio of tax abatement packages during its Wednesday April 18 meeting.

Massachusetts-based Franklin Sports Inc. was awarded a six-year Jobs PILOT to build a 250,000- to 300,000-square-foot warehouse adjacent to its Memphis distribution center at 5510 Getwell Road, adding 27 new jobs with an average salary of $39,722, excluding benefits.

56. Luttrell Vetoes One Resolution, Refuses to Sign Another -

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell has vetoed a resolution for attorney and former County Commissioner Julian Bolton to continue in his role as legislative policy adviser to the commission.

57. Luttrell Vetoes One Resolution, Refuses to Sign Another -

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell has vetoed a resolution for attorney and former county commissioner Julian Bolton to continue in his role as legislative policy advisor to the commission.

58. Events -

The National Civil Rights Museum will host a discussion with the editors of “An Unseen Light: Black Struggles for Freedom in Memphis, Tennessee” Tuesday, April 17, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the museum, 450 Mulberry St. In the book, 17 scholars examine the city’s role in African-American history. Editors Aram Goudsouzian and Charles McKinney will be joined by four of the authors: Beverly Bond, Charles Hughes, Zandria Robinson and Elton Weaver. Cost is free. Visit civilrightsmuseum.org.

59. 3 Companies Seek Abatements for Memphis Projects -

Sports equipment manufacturer Franklin Sports Inc., pharmacy services provider Enclara Pharmacia Inc. and petroleum distributor OMO Energy & Technology Inc. will all make their cases for tax incentives when the Economic Development Growth Engine meets Wednesday, April 18.

60. CCRFC Approves Change In Wessman Hotel Project -

The Center City Revenue Finance Corp. has approved a change in the development team planning an Arrive Hotel in the former Memphis College of Art graduate school, 477 S. Main St., and granted an extension on the time the owners have to close on the project.

61. Last Word: Mud Island Changes, Zoo Parking and Capitol Hill Revolt On UT Board -

This could be your last chance to see the Mississippi River Museum at Mud Island River Park as it has been for about the last 30 years. The park on the southern half of Mud Island opens for the season Saturday. The museum will be open only through July 4 is what is billed as a “limited run” followed by a public engagement process for “reimagining how we tell the story of the Mississippi River in a 21st century way,” according to park general manager Trey Giuntini in a Thursday press release.

62. April 13-19, 2018: This week in Memphis history -

1968: Striking Memphis sanitation workers vote to accept a pay raise of 15 cents an hour from the city, ending their strike after 64 days. Ten cents of the raise will go into effect in May, with the other 5 cents being added on Sept. 1.
The amount has come up before in the negotiations, which are being watched closely by The White House and federal labor officials following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on April 4. Memphis Mayor Henry Loeb balks at the proposal presented by his team, saying he would agree to a raise effective with the new fiscal year beginning July 1 and not before. He also says the raise will be less than 15 cents an hour. Philanthropist Abe Plough secretly agrees to pay the difference needed for the entire pay raise starting May 1, contributing a total of $60,000 to cover the cost. Plough’s role remains a secret until his death in 1984.

63. CCRFC Approves Change In Wessman Hotel Project -

The Center City Revenue Finance Corp. has approved a change in the development team planning an Arrive Hotel in the former Memphis College of Art graduate school, 477 S. Main St., and granted an extension on the time the owners have to close on the project.

64. City Council Grants Historic Overlay Status to Cooper-Young -

Memphis City Council members gave final approval Tuesday, April 10, to a historical overlay district for Cooper-Young – the first historic district status granted by the city in 20 years.

But the 7-3 vote on third and final reading likely isn’t the end of the discussion about how decisions will be made by the local Landmarks Commission enforcing terms of the overlay that govern what can and cannot be built there or who it can be changed.

65. Annual WFGM Awards Celebrate Contributions of Local Women -

Three Memphis women who have dedicated their lives to improving life in the city they call home will be honored for their contributions this week.

The Rev. Sonia Louden Walker, Anita S. Vaughn and Fredrika “Freddi” Felt will be the recipients at this year’s Legends Awards sponsored by the Women’s Foundation for a Greater Memphis (WFGM).

66. Council Gets First Look At MATA Route Changes -

A task force looking to overhaul the city’s bus system presents a draft report Tuesday, April 10, to Memphis City Council members.

The Memphis 3.0 transit plan goes to the council at a 1 p.m. committee session for discussion.

67. New Details on Downtown Hotel, Clark Tower Lands Another Tenant -

477 S. Main St.
Memphis, TN 38103

Application Date: April 10

Owner: South Main Hotel LLC

68. Flintco, Yates Construction Bid on Convention Project -

Flintco and Yates Construction companies are the bidders on the contract for the estimated $175 million renovation of the Memphis Cook Convention Center.

Memphis Convention Center board chairman Wayne Tabor said the two bids appear to meet the city’s goal of 30 percent participation by minority-owned businesses and the bid details will be evaluated to determine the best way to deliver the project.

69. Editorial: Universal Life a Blueprint For Building Black Wealth -

While many of us were thinking about and remembering the turbulent events of 1968, this week brought another significant nod to the past with a commitment to the future.

The Universal Life Insurance Co. building isn’t a Pyramid, though its architecture has an Egyptian theme. It’s not the tallest building in the city, but then again, the tallest building in the city is boarded up these days.

70. Last Word: I Am A Man Plaza, Graceland Clears EDGE and Filing Deadline Action -

Sometimes the simplest concepts say more than an elaborate explanation can – even when the history it depicts is complex. A plaza dedicated to the 1,300 city sanitation workers who went on strike in 1968 formally opened Thursday on what had been a vacant lot just across Pontotoc from the south side of Clayborn Temple. And the occasion included more of the small moments that have made this week so compelling. Watching civil rights icon Rev. James Lawson walk around the plaza and discover it includes one of his quotes from the 1968 strike.

71. Two Downtown Hotel Projects Moving Forward After Delay -

Two Downtown Memphis hotel projects that were seemingly in stasis appear to moving forward.

Though unrelated, both projects have filed paperwork indicating physical progress may soon be around the corner.

72. Two Downtown Hotel Projects in Question Appear to be Moving Forward -

Two hotel projects Downtown Memphis that were seemingly in stasis both appear to moving forward.

Though unrelated, both projects filed paperwork Tuesday, April 3 that indicate physical progress may soon be around the corner.

73. Last Word: Holder in Memphis for MLK 50, EDGE Sets a Date and South City Moves -

The week of MLK50 commemorations began Monday with a speech by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and the arrival Monday afternoon of Rev. Bernice King, the youngest child of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Meanwhile, Monday's day of free admission to the museum, underwritten by FedEx drew a long line. It also drew some remote trepidation that tends to make the situation seem worse than it is once you actually go there for yourself.

74. Universal Life Building To Reopen Tuesday -

Memphis government and business leaders are preparing to reopen the Universal Life Insurance Co. building, 480 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., following its renovation through a public-private partnership with the city of Memphis.

75. EDGE Sets Date to Vote on Graceland Expansion Plans -

The Economic Development Growth Engine board has set a date to vote on Elvis Presley Enterprises’ Graceland expansion plans.

At the specially called meeting, which will be held Thursday, April 5, at 3 p.m. at the Embassy Suites Hotel on Shady Grove Road, the EDGE board will review both of Graceland’s requests for tax incentives – the approximately 80,000-square-foot exhibition and convention space and the roughly 6,200-seat performance venue.

76. Flintco and Yates Construction Bid on Convention Renovations -

Flintco and Yates Construction companies are the bidders on the contract for the estimated $175 million renovation of the Memphis Cook Convention Center.

The two general contractors met the March 29 deadline to submit bids for the project.

77. Stock Market Grocery Spurs Interest In Lakeland’s Lake District Project -

After more than a decade of preparation, The Lake District multiuse development in Lakeland is seeing some concrete progress. In fact, the developer, Los Angeles-based Gilad Development Inc., has signed its first tenant to the location on the southeast corner of the intersection of I-40 and Canada Road.

78. Community LIFT Looking to Build $5 Million Loan Pool Amid Growth -

An organization that pursues sources of financial, human and intellectual capital to strategically revitalize neighborhoods wants to build a $5 million loan pool for investing in Memphis communities and leaders.

79. City Tells Developers to Be Flexible On Sewer Flow in Fletcher Creek Area -

Developers in the Fletcher Creek basin area should consider temporary storage of wastewater from their developments as they plan for construction, the city public works director told a group of 50 developers Thursday, March 29.

80. Funding Plans -

The subject of county government’s $18 million to $25 million projected revenue surplus didn’t surface once this week as the Shelby County Commission’s budget committee continues to prepare for budget season. The Wednesday, March 28, committee session was the first since County Mayor Mark Luttrell’s administration said it is estimating the surplus for the current fiscal year, which ends June 30, because of better-than-expected county property tax collections and fewer appeals of property tax reappraisals.

81. Last Word: Graceland Responds, The Hustle's First Season and Memphis Rent -

Sun Studio getting a fresh coat of paint Tuesday as city road crews were redoing some lines on Downtown streets including turning arrows in the left curb lane that always need pointing out to visitors baffled by the Memphis enigma that is one-way streets.

82. Last Word: The RDC's New Leader, Potter on 100 North Main and FedEx Moves -

Is Memphis big enough for FedExForum and some kind of event space on the Graceland campus in Whitehaven? The city administration thinks that could be the case. But it requires an “honest broker” between Graceland and the Grizz – who run the forum for the city and county – to quote city chief legal officer Bruce McMullenif there is a deal to be had.

83. Last Word: Graceland's New Lawsuit, Memphis March For Our Lives and Trolley Test -

Remember the comment from last week’s EDGE meeting by EDGE board member Tom Dyer who said the economic development body was likely to be sued no matter what it did on Graceland’s application for tax breaks on its “convention center” plan in Whitehaven? At week’s end, Graceland followed through with a lawsuit in Chancery Court against EDGE for delaying a decision on the matter. The lawsuit contends EDGE has no intention of making a decision on incentives and that Graceland is entitled to those incentives.

84. EPE Expansion in Limbo, Overton Square Restaurant Sets Opening Date -

3734 Elvis Presley Blvd.
Memphis, TN 38116

Project Cost: $22 million

Owner: Elvis Presley Enterprises

Details: Elvis Presley Enterprises’ expansion plans have been put on hold for the second straight month as the Economic Development Growth Engine for Memphis and Shelby County board continues to sort out if any implications will stem from approving bond financing for the Whitehaven project.

85. Tenn.'s Road, Infrastructure Systems Problem Shared Across State -

Though we often complain about our government, we count on it every day, in large ways and small.

An example of a small way … potholes. Which don’t seem like a small issue after they cause your tire(s) to blow out.

86. EPE Expansion Plans Placed on Hold Again -

Elvis Presley Enterprises’ expansion plans have been put on hold for the second straight month as the Economic Development Growth Engine for Memphis and Shelby County board continues to sort out what, if any, implications will stem from approving bond financing for the Whitehaven project.

87. Last Word: SCS Plans For $15, IRIS Matinees and The Hard Hit Fund -

“From a financial standpoint, we need our fans back and we need them back now.” University of Memphis president David Rudd breaking the university’s silence on the basketball coaching change that was made formal Tuesday with the announcement that Penny Hardaway is indeed the new coach. And Hardaway had a lot to say that Tigers fans and Memphians wanted to hear.

88. Events -

The Project Management Institute Memphis Chapter will meet Wednesday, March 21, at 6 p.m. at the Crescent Club, 6075 Poplar Ave., suite 909. Author and life coach Jasmin Nuhic will present “Create your development plan; no one else should.” Reel 2 Reel Photography will be on hand offering optional professional headshots for $20, so arrive early and dress professionally. Register at pmimemphis.org.

89. Last Word: Hardaway Day, 'Our Turn' and Elvis Documentary Takes on Col. Parker -

By the time Penny Hardaway is formally announced as the new Tigers basketball coach Tuesday morning at 11 a.m. the reaction could make you wonder what is going to be left by the time the first Tigers team led by Hardaway takes the court next season. Among those reacting Monday to the word of a contract agreement between Hardaway and the University was none other than LeBron James tweeting about the Tigers possible choices of footwear.

90. Events -

Memphis Brooks Museum of Art hosts its final community engagement session to gather feedback on its Downtown relocation Tuesday, March 20, from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Memphis fire headquarters (the site of Brooks’ future home), 65 S. Front St. Museum officials are seeking input as they begin the process of selecting an architect and creating a vision for the new space. Free and open to the public, but RSVPs requested via the Facebook event. See facebook.com/brooksmuseum for details.

91. Olford Ministries Continues to Influence the World -

The man who reportedly most influenced the Rev. Billy Graham’s ministry left a legacy in Memphis that still impacts people from all over the world.

92. Council to Discuss City Pre-K Funding Proposal -

Memphis City Council members have their first discussion Tuesday, March 20, on Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland ’s proposal to provide $6 million in city funding to expand prekindergarten programs by 2020.

93. Events -

The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development brings its apprenticeship listening tour to Memphis Monday, March 19, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. in Southwest Tennessee Community College’s Bert Bornblum Library art gallery, 5983 Macon Cove. The goal of the tour is to determine the current state and future of area apprenticeship programs. Visit tn.gov/ecd/apprenticeship-tour.html for details and to RSVP.

94. Raleigh Town Center To Break Ground -

Construction on the new $28 million Raleigh Town Center begins this month, city of Memphis leaders announced Tuesday, March 13.

The city project is on the site of the demolished Raleigh Springs Mall on the southeast corner of Yale Road and Austin Peay Highway. It will include a new Raleigh branch public library, a new police precinct and traffic precinct, a city skate park and an 11-acre lake with a walking trail.

95. Riviana, Ebrofrost Continue Work On $26M Frozen Food Facility -

2360 Prospect St.

Memphis, TN 38106

Permit Amount: $3.1 million

Project Cost: $26.5 million

Application Date: March 2018

Owner: Riviana Foods

96. Small Cell Legislation Advancing, But Rural Options More Limited -

NASHVILLE – Unable to get cell-phone service at a football game in Nashville or Knoxville? Can’t send a text from a Broadway honky tonk or Beale Street blues bar? Wondering how autonomous cars will ever work?

97. Last Word: Waiting on Hardaway, Campaign Habits and Hasheem Thabeet's Shadow -

Penny Hardaway’s formal hiring as the new Tigers basketball coach is expected next week and you can almost hear all of the resume’s hitting Hardaway’s email as he puts together a staff. Hardaway’s name first surfaced as a possible coach in the last days of Josh Pastner, pre-Tubby Smith. It's only become stronger and better developed since then.

98. Events -

Memphis Brooks Museum of Art hosts its final community engagement session to gather feedback on its Downtown relocation Tuesday, March 20, from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Memphis fire headquarters (the site of Brooks’ future home), 65 S. Front St. Museum officials are seeking input on several topics as they begin the process of selecting an architect and creating a vision for the new space. Free and open to the public, but RSVPs requested via the Facebook event. See facebook.com/brooksmuseum for details.

99. Editorial: Tubby Smith Meant Well But Memphis Needed More -

In two seasons as head basketball coach at the University of Memphis, Tubby Smith served the institution, the sport, and most importantly the players, with integrity.

He talked about real issues in college athletics that have made him an outlier in many ways. He’s widely regarded as the coach who does everything the right way, who values the educational attainment and personal development of student-athletes more than the wins.

100. Events -

Circuit Playhouse will present “James and the Giant Peach” Friday, March 16, through April 8 at 51 S. Cooper St. Visit playhouseonthesquare.org for times and tickets.