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VOL. 127 | NO. 253 | Friday, December 28, 2012

Daily Digest

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$1.3 Million Permit Filed for The Capital Grille

Orlando, Fla.-based Darden Concepts Inc. has filed a $1.3 million permit application with the city-county Office of Construction Code Enforcement to build The Capital Grille on an outparcel of the Crescent Center in East Memphis.

An address of 6065 U.S. 72 (Poplar Avenue) is listed for the 8,946-square-foot Capital Grille, which will be built in front of the Crescent Center’s attached garage along Poplar.

Darden last month filed a $1.7 million permit for another restaurant, Seasons 52, to also be built on a Crescent Center outparcel.

That permit listed an address 6085 Poplar Ave. for Seasons 52, a 9,231-square-foot restaurant to rise at the corner of Poplar and Ridgeway Road.

Crescent Center owner Highwoods Properties Inc., which is listed on the permit, bought the landmark East Memphis office tower for $52.6 million in 2010.

The Land Use Control Board unanimously approved the additions to the property in April. Both restaurants are scheduled to open in fall 2013.

For more on these restuarants and their development at the Crescent Center, see this week’s “Inked” column on Page 1 by real estate reporter Sarah Baker.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

Fogelman Partnership Buys Atlanta Apartments for $44 Million

A joint venture with Memphis-based Fogelman Venture Partners and New York-based DRA Advisors LLC acquired The Residences at Northlake Apartments in Atlanta and concurrently renamed the community CityNORTH Apartments.

CityNORTH is a 357-unit, Class A mid-rise apartment community built in 2006. The property was 95 percent occupied at the time of the acquisition.

CityNORTH is comprised of four- and five-story buildings with interior corridors, elevator access and an attached parking garage.

Apartment homes include gourmet kitchens, stainless steel appliances, upgraded cabinetry and ceramic tile flooring. The property has one- and two-bedroom floor plans with rental rates of $849 to $1,149 per month.

Fogelman Management Group will manage the property. Founded in 1963, the firm presently manages 60 apartment communities totaling more than 18,000 apartment homes Southeast, Southwest and Midwest regions of the country.

Rick and Mark Fogelman are the principals of Fogelman Venture Partners. Fogelman Venture Partners and DRA Advisors bought two apartment communities in Houston in November.

– Sarah Baker

State Supreme Court Rules Teacher Improperly Fired

The Tennessee Supreme Court, in a unanimous opinion, has ruled the old Memphis City Schools board acted improperly in 2007 when it fired a tenured teacher who took extended sick leave without written charges or a termination hearing.

The high court’s opinion reverses a Tennessee Court of Appeals decision and reinstates a trial court judgment awarding Saundra Thompson back pay and damages.

Shelby County Chancellor Arnold Goldin awarded Thompson back pay, damages and legal fees totaling $325,419 and ordered her reinstated.

But the appeals court remanded the case back to Goldin, ruling there was a dispute about whether Thompson sought additional sick leave prior to being fired or whether she did not make such a request.

Since Thompson was terminated in 2007, the school board governing public schools within the city of Memphis has since been merged with the Shelby County Board of Education to form a countywide school board governing both school systems. The two school systems merge in August 2013.

Meanwhile, the state tenure law at issue in the Thompson case has since been amended by the Tennessee legislature.

The Supreme Court opinion applies only to the state law that existed at the time of Thompson’s claim.

– Bill Dries

Carter Malone Group Hosts Entrepreneurship Events

The Carter Malone Group LLC is hosting three free symposiums entitled “Controlling How the Cookie Crumbles: Educating and Empowering Entrepreneurs” in the coming weeks.

The seminars start Jan. 12 at Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Church at 918 Looney Ave. at 9:00 a.m.

The events are designed to target women and minorities who are interested in starting a business or are new business owners.

Other dates and locations include: Jan. 26 at Bloomfield Baptist Church, 123 South Parkway; and Feb. 16 at Breath of Life Church, 3795 Frayser Raleigh Road.

Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. at all events. The program begins at 9 a.m. and ends at noon.

A $1,500 grant and other benefits will be awarded in March to the best business plan presented by the participants to help get their business started or to help them grow their business.

All three events will benefit the abused women services efforts of YWCA of Greater Memphis and F.F.U.N – Freedom From Unnecessary Negatives. Participants are asked to bring an item to donate or financial contribution to one of those organizations and get free entry.

Registration is required. For more information, contact The Carter Malone Group at 278-0881 or visit www.cmgpr.com.

– Andy Meek

The Gift and Art Shop to Close After 55 Years

The Gift and Art Shop Inc. – an upscale boutique offering china, crystal, flatware, stationery and other specialty items – is closing its doors at 4704 Poplar Ave. after 55 years in business.

An email sent to customers Wednesday, Dec. 26, by the store’s owner, Evelyn Heun, said it’s “now time for me to move into another chapter of my life and enjoy time with my family.”

A closing sale started Wednesday with at least 40 percent off merchandise.

The Gift and Art Shop opened in 1957. Calls to The Gift and Art Shop were not immediately returned.

– Sarah Baker

US New Home Sales Jump at Fastest Rate Since April 2010

Americans bought new homes last month at the fastest pace in more than two and a half years, further evidence of a sustained housing recovery.

Sales of new homes rose 4.4 percent in November from October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 377,000, the Commerce Department said Thursday. That’s the fastest pace since April 2010, when a federal tax credit boosted sales.

New-home sales have also increased 15.3 percent over the past year. The improvement comes from depressed levels. Sales remain below the 700,000 that economists consider healthy.

Steady job gains this year and ultra-low mortgage rates have boosted sales of both newly built and previously occupied homes.

More people are looking to buy or rent a home after living with relatives or friends during and immediately after the Great Recession.

Another big reason for the rebound is the excess supply of homes that were built during the housing boom has finally thinned out. Only 149,000 new homes were for sale at the end of last month, according to the report. That’s just above a record low of 143,000 in August.

Still, the market is steadily improving and that has lifted builder confidence to its highest level in 6 ½ years, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo survey released last week.

The pace of home construction is nearly 22 percent higher than a year earlier, according to government data. Builders are on track this year to start work on the most homes in four years.

Home prices are also increasing. The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller national home price index released Wednesday increased 4.3 percent in October compared with a year ago. That’s the largest year-over-year increase in two and a half years. And prices rose for the 12-month period in 18 of the 20 cities tracked by the index.

Sales of previously occupied homes rose to the highest level in three years in November, the National Association of Realtors said last week.

Though new homes represent only a small portion of the housing market, they have a disproportionate impact on the economy.

Each home built creates an average of three jobs for a year and generates about $90,000 in tax revenue, according to statistics from the National Association of Home Builders.

– The Associated Press

PROPERTY SALES 97 418 8,253
MORTGAGES 112 508 9,293
BUILDING PERMITS 194 1,059 18,126
BANKRUPTCIES 46 208 5,367