VOL. 115 | NO. 92 | Monday, May 14, 2001
Commission to hear Raines Road $1
Widening Raines Road
part of $1.6 million plan
By MARY DANDO
The Daily News
A resolution comes before the Shelby County Commission at 1:30 p.m. today to approve awarding Ferrell Paving Inc. a $1.6 million contract for the improvement of Raines Road from west of Ridge Road to Weaver Road.
It is the first phase of a two-part project that includes widening the road to five lanes that will ultimately stretch from Sewanee Road to Weaver including the creation of a grade crossing over the BNSF railroad tracks, said county engineer Mike Oakes.
The original plans were reviewed two years ago. Assuming the county commission approves the plan, Oakes expects to have a pre-construction meeting with Ferrell Paving later this week.
"Its a very intricate project. Were building in an urban area with lots of housing. Well have to deal with utility and communication lines and so forth. Depending on weather conditions, I expect it will take about a year or a year-and-a-half to complete," he said.
Although this is a Shelby County project built with county funds, it also concerns part of the city, Oakes said. He and other county officials consulted with city engineers and the city department of public works.
The second phase of the project should begin in about three years, he said.
What the improvements will mean is the creation of sidewalks and drainage systems so children in the area wont walk to school in the rain in a ditch running alongside the road, Oakes said.
In other business, commissioners will hear a planning application by Hickory Hill Partnership to build on the south side of Nonconnah Parkway, west of Hacks Cross Road.
Don Jones, principal planner with the Memphis and Shelby County Office of Planning and Development, said the applicant is seeking a change of rezoning that would permit hotel, office or restaurant use of the property.
"It was originally approved in 1987 for multi-family use. The applicant has requested the change in rezoning due to the rerouting of the Nonconnah Parkway, which has made this a highly visible site, but yet one without very good access," Jones said.
The developer believes with this prominent visibility a hotel or office use would be a better use of the property and the OPD agreed with that general contention, Jones said.
The Memphis and Shelby County Land Use Control Board also recommended approval of the planned application with conditions.
Memphis City Council might hear the zoning change application at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Today, commissioners will be asked to approve the county mayors nominations to the Memphis and Shelby County Public Building Authority.
Two of the nominees, businessman Willard Sparks and attorney Elijah Noel Jr. previously have been members of the board. The other nominees are Kevin Kane, president and chief executive officer of the Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau; Luke Yancy III, president and CEO of the Mid-South Minority Business Council; Kevin Roper, vice president for marketing, advancement and government relations at the University of Memphis; Carol Crawley, chairman of the Center City Commission; and Henry Evans, managing partner of a human asset management consulting firm and a former chief administrative officer with Memphis city government.
Members of the PBA are appointed jointly by county and city mayors and confirmed by the county commission and the city council.
PBA members serve six years and the board was initially set up to construct and oversee the operations of The Pyramid.
The make-up of the membership of the PBA is significant in the light of an NBA team coming to Memphis. Members of the board will be expected to evaluate improvements for The Pyramid so that it might temporarily house the NBA team.
The nominations might be heard by Memphis City Council Tuesday.