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VOL. 8 | NO. 30 | Saturday, July 18, 2015

Daily Digest

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Ikea Acquires Land for New Cordova Store

Ikea continues to take steps toward construction of its massive Cordova store.

According to documents filed July 10, IKEA Property Inc. purchased about 41 acres of land from Music City Investments LLC for $5.7 million.

The three parcels located on Germantown Parkway near Interstate 40 are valued at $5.4 million and have been renamed Ikea Way, according to the Shelby County Assessor of Property.

Earlier this month the Swedish furniture retailer applied for a $16 million building permit for the 269,000-square-foot store expected to open in fall ???2016.

It is projected that the store will generate $15 million in new local tax revenue and employ 175 people.

– Wendy Greenlaw, Chandler Reports

Cummins Begins Memphis Distribution Expansion

Cummins Inc. is retooling its current distribution center in Memphis as it prepares for a planned expansion.

Dan Walker Associates Inc. has applied for a nearly $2.2 million building permit to renovate the existing Cummins distribution center at 4155 Quest Way in southeast Memphis.

The renovation of the existing distribution center comes as Cummins prepares for a $6.7 million expansion that will see the Indiana-based company take over a 400,000-square-foot building at 5800 Challenge Drive, just across the street from the existing Cummins distribution facility on Quest Way.

Cummins and the state confirmed the expansion in May.

The board of the city-county Economic Development Growth Engine in February granted Cummins a 15-year payment-in-lieu-of-taxes incentive to retain 897 local jobs and create 70 new jobs. The PILOT would save the company $12.9 million while producing a local tax benefit of $59.6 million.

The company received the PILOT after saying it was exploring relocating operations across the state line to Mississippi.

Cummins – a global power company that designs, manufactures, distributes and services diesel and natural gas engines and related technologies – has multiple operations in Memphis and has been involved with the Memphis community for more than 30 years.

– Amos Maki

Memphis Finalist for Choice Neighborhoods Grant

Memphis is among the finalists for a federal grant worth up to $30 million that would fund the demolition and redevelopment of Foote Homes, the city’s last large public housing development.

The city got word Tuesday, July 14, from U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen that it is one of nine cities competing for the Choice Neighborhoods grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

HUD officials are expected to make a decision in September.

Choice Neighborhoods is the successor program to the HOPE VI program that started in 1998 and funded the demolition and rebuilding of all of the city’s other major public housing projects with the exception of Lauderdale Courts, which is on the National Register of Historic Places.

All of those other housing developments, including Lauderdale Courts, have been converted to mixed-use, mixed-income developments.

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr.’s administration applied last year for a Choice Neighborhoods grant but didn’t make the list, prompting Wharton and Cohen to review the application for resubmission this year.

The federal funding for the Foote Homes demolition and redevelopment is considered essential to the ambitious South City plan, which began during Mayor Willie Herenton’s administration under the name Triangle Noir and continued under the Heritage Trail moniker earlier in Wharton’s tenure.

South City is a larger redevelopment effort that incorporates historic sites as well as housing and retail development in the Downtown area south of FedExForum into South Memphis.

The redevelopment of the Cleaborn Homes public housing project as Cleaborn Pointe at Heritage Landing – on the east side of Lauderdale Street across from Foote Homes – is part of the South City plan. Phases of Cleaborn Pointe already are completed more phases are underway.

– Bill Dries

Nineteenth Century Club Owner Files Building Permit

The owner of the Nineteenth Century Club is prepared to launch a renovation of the historic building on Union Avenue.

Union Group LLC has applied for a $2.17 million building permit with the city-county Office of Construction Code Enforcement to proceed with renovations to turn the home at 1433 Union Ave. into a restaurant. Archer Custom Builders is listed as the contractor on the permit.

In late June, the building’s owners secured a $2.35 million construction loan. Union Group, Liang Lin and Xiao Dan Chen secured the construction loan from Bank of Bartlett, according to a June 26 deed of trust.

The 15,813-square-foot house was built in 1907 by Memphis lumber magnate Rowland Jones Darne, according to Memphis Heritage Inc. The Nineteenth Century Club, a philanthropic women’s organization, purchased the property in 1926 and held onto it for more than 80 years before growing maintenance costs prompted the club to put it on the market in 2012.

The current owners won it through a competitive bidding process in January 2013, submitting a $550,000 bid for the three-story wood-frame home. A few months later, they sought a demolition permit, spurring a legal battle over the future of the property.

By August 2014, the owners announced they would not demolish the property and instead would build a restaurant inside the mansion.

– Amos Maki

Corky’s Offering Fresh Meals at New Germantown Kroger

The new Kroger store in Germantown will offer hot dishes of Corky’s Ribs & BBQ when it opens next month.

Kroger reached an agreement with Corky’s to serve select items, including ribs, pork shoulder and chicken prepared onsite, at the new store at 7735 Farmington Blvd., which is set to open Aug. 12. Corky’s beans, potato salad, cole slaw and banana pudding also will be available.

“Memphis is famous for its BBQ and we are delighted to provide our Kroger customers with hot, freshly prepared dishes from a great locally owned brand that has won the hearts and taste buds of the people of our great city,” said Tim Brown, president of Kroger’s Delta division, in a statement.

Corky’s began serving its products inside Kroger stores around 25 years ago and the deal at the new Germantown store is an extension of that relationship, Corky’s officials said in a statement.

Corky’s operating hours at the store will be from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.

– Amos Maki

Dwan Gilliom Leaving Memphis Public Works

Memphis public works director Dwan Gilliom is leaving City Hall to become director of public works for the city of Shreveport, La.

The Shreveport Times reported Mayor Ollie Tyler has hired Gilliom after a national search. She announced his hire Tuesday, July 14, as part of her larger strategy for Shreveport after six months in office that has included hiring new leaders in other divisions of city government.

Gilliom has been Memphis public works director since late 2007.

– Bill Dries

REIT Buys Sears Properties in Sale-Leaseback

In part of a major transaction to increase cash flow and make their retail spaces more productive, Sears Holdings Corp. sold four Memphis properties to its newly formed public real estate investment trust, Seritage Growth Properties, for a combined $17.6 million.

Seritage Growth Properties, trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol SRG, was formed by Sears in June 2015. Last week Sears Holdings announced that it closed its rights offering and sale-leaseback transaction with Seritage for the sale of approximately 235 Sears and Kmart retail stores resulting in aggregate gross proceeds of $2.7 billion.

“We expect the creation of Seritage to enable us to accelerate many of the activities that we have been pursuing over the past several years to transform Sears Holdings into a leading integrated retail membership-focused company,” said Edward S. Lampert, Sears Holdings’ chairman and CEO, in a July 7 statement. “By separating a portion of Sears Holdings’ real estate portfolio into a new, publicly traded company, and leasing back the space, we are substantially enhancing Sears Holdings’ financial flexibility and significantly transforming our capital structure toward one that is more flexible, long-term oriented and less dependent on inventory and receivables.

Lampert said Sears plans to continue operating most of its retail stores in each of the Seritage-owned locations while leasing the properties back from the REIT.

The properties that house the retail shopping centers on Poplar Avenue in East Memphis and at Wolfchase Galleria in Cordova sold in conjunction with two properties that Sears leases to On the Border and Avis Car Rental. The Sears at Southland Mall in Whitehaven was not included in the transaction.

Lease agreements between Sears and Seritage were filed at the time of sale.

The four properties have a combined tax appraisal value of $15.6 million, according to the Shelby County Assessor of Property.

– Wendy Greenlaw, Chandler Reports

Waddell and Associates Honored by CNBC

Memphis-based wealth management firm Waddell and Associates Inc. has been ranked 29th on CNBC's list of “Top 100 Fee-Only Wealth Managers” for 2015.

Among the metrics used to determine rankings on the independently researched list were assets under management, professional designations and years in service. Waddell and Associates CEO and chief investment strategist David Waddell said the recognition by CNBC and the firm's success in general are a function of the success of the firm's clients.

Founded in 1986, Waddell and Associates is an investment advisory and wealth management firm with clients that include high-net-worth individuals, families, trusts, foundations, pension plans and institutions. The firm’s investment philosophy is a tax-sensitive and opportunistic multi-manager approach that has been maintained for over 25 years.

– Andy Meek

Junior Achievement Celebrates 60 Years

Junior Achievement of Memphis and the Mid-South is celebrating its 60th anniversary of empowering children to reach their own economic success.

The nonprofit organization was founded in 1955 with the goal of educating youth about financial literacy, free enterprise, entrepreneurship and workforce readiness in order to secure their future and improve the quality of their lives.

“Milestones of this magnitude deserve both celebration and a commitment to continue support,” said Larry Colbert, president and CEO of Junior Achievement of Memphis and the Mid-South Inc. “I invite our city’s adults to become one of the few who make a difference by volunteering in a K-12 classroom, volunteering at JA BizTown or sponsoring a school for JA BizTown.”

Programming includes JA curriculum taught in K-12 classroom in schools throughout the city; JA BizTown, a model city that fourth-, fifth- and sixth-grade students run for a day after a month-long classroom preparation; and job shadowing professionals in their workplace.

– Don Wade

Memphis Releases $200M Pedestrian Safety Plan

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. unveiled an ambitious pedestrian and school safety action plan Tuesday, July 14, that has been in the making for 18 months.

The plan takes in a list of $200 million in improvements to sidewalks and street crossings over 20 years. Wharton’s administration doesn’t have all the funding nailed down, and said it would likely come through a combination of grants, city capital funding and money from nonprofit philanthropies.

But Wharton points to $3 million of pedestrian projects underway in the fiscal year that began July 1 in the Orange Mound, Frayser, Binghampton and Cherokee neighborhoods.

The priorities were coordinated with Shelby County Schools leaders.

The plan also includes a program to offer some financial assistance for sidewalk repairs for low income, disabled and senior citizen homeowners.

Memphis City Council members declared a moratorium earlier this year on the requirement after some homeowners got notices from the city of their obligation. The council worked with Wharton to find some money for the sidewalk fund.

City engineer John Cameron counts 3,500 miles of sidewalk within the city limits with a replacement value of more than $1 billion.

“What this plan allows us to do, for the first time, is strategically think about improvements for the next 20 years,” Cameron said in a written statement. “Where they’ll do the most good and work to fund, implement and evaluate those projects on an annual basis.”

– Bill Dries

SRVS, AutoZone Honored For Disability Job Efforts

Memphis-based disability services provider SRVS and auto parts retailer AutoZone have garnered recognition from the Association of People Supporting Employment First for their contributions supporting integrated community employment for people with disabilities.

SRVS, which is Tennessee’s largest provider of services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, received the “Best Practices” award for outstanding accomplishments in promoting state-of-the-art practices in Employment First, highlighted by the creation of training curriculum and establishment of a career center for job preparedness.

AutoZone received an “Employer Award” for its inclusion of persons with disabilities alongside those without disability at its Memphis fulfillment center. AutoZone employs seven people who are supported by SRVS.

Employment First is a U.S. Department of Labor initiative created to assist states in implementing system changes needed for the move to community-based employment. Since SRVS began participating in the program in 2013, the organization has placed 26 individuals in full community-based, integrated employment with major companies in Memphis, including AutoZone.

As part of its shift to an integrated employment model, SRVS closed its 52-year-old sheltered occupational workshop at 3592 Knight Arnold Road in late June.

SRVS executive director Tyler Hampton said the APSE award is validation that the integrated employment transition is the right move for those with disabilities.

– Daily News staff

Tennessee Arts Commission Awards $3.9M in Grants

The Tennessee Arts Commission has awarded 311 fiscal year 2016 Annual Grant Awards totaling $3.9 million to help fund arts and cultural activities for arts organizations, schools, local governments, nonprofits and artists in Tennessee.

More than 40 organizations in Shelby County received grants and several were recipients of funding in excess of $50,000. They were:

Memphis Brooks Museum of Art Inc., $77,500; Circuit Playhouse Inc., $73,500; Ballet Memphis, $70,000; Opera Memphis, $68,000; Theatre Memphis, $68,000; Memphis Symphony Orchestra, $54,000.

The annual grants are the first of a series that will be made by the TAC. It expects to award more than 1,000 grants during its fiscal year, totaling more than $5.3 million dollars.

Of the $5.3 million dollars that will be granted, $4.5 million came from specialty license plate fees earmarked to benefit the arts. Additionally, the commission receives a state appropriation and federal funding, namely from the National Endowment for the Arts.

– Don Wade

Crosstown Arts to Provide Studio Residency Program

Beginning this September, Crosstown Arts will offer a studio residency program for visual artists.

The studio residency is a short-term project space made available to an individual artist for a four-month session. The temporary space will be used for focused creative work in a new setting.

This studio residency program will include access to a private, newly renovated 750-square-foot studio provided at no cost to the resident artist. The studio is located in the back of 424 N. Cleveland, adjacent to existing artist studios and Crosstown Arts’ galleries and offices.

The studio is intended as a workspace only. Room and board are not provided.

Application deadline is July 31 and applicants must be 21 years of age and live in Shelby County. The residency session dates are Sept. 1-Dec. 31. For more information, go to www.crosstownarts.org and click on “Studio Residency” at the top of the page.

– Don Wade

'Over the Edge' Rappel to Support Special Olympics

Special Olympics Greater Memphis is giving Memphis thrillseekers the chance to rappel down one of Memphis’ tallest buildings – One Commerce Square – while raising funds to support the organization’s events.

The Aug. 29 event will be open to the first 75 applicants who are at least 14 years old by the date of the event, weigh 300 pounds or less, and raise a minimum of $1,000 by the event date through donations.

All participants will be provided with a full-body harness, helmet and rubber gloves, and will undergo a practice and safety session prior to actually going over the edge. All entrants will receive a T-shirt, a gift bag and free admission to an Aug. 28 Over the Edge reception.

For more information about the event, what to expect and how to register, visit specialolympicsmem.org.

– Daily News staff

Academy Sports to Open First Olive Branch Store

Academy Sports + Outdoors plans to open its first Olive Branch store, along with a store in D’Iberville on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, this fall. The Olive Branch store will be located at the corner of Pleasant Hill and Goodman roads.

Academy Sports + Outdoors, operated by Academy Ltd., currently includes five Mississippi stores, including one in Tupelo that opened in early July. The chain offers casual and athletic footwear and apparel; team sports and golf products; hunting, fishing and camping gear; and more.

Both new stores will span about 62,000 square feet and create around 100 jobs.

Academy Sports + Outdoors operates a Memphis store at 7926 Giacosa Place and a Collierville store at 275 New Byhalia Road.

– Daily News staff

UTHSC Appoints New Department Chair

Matthew Allman has been appointed chair for the Department of Physician Assistant Studies at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.

Allman is assuming the position vacated by Linda Reed, the department’s previous chair, who retired June 30. Joining the college faculty in November 2012, Allman served as clinical coordinator for the Physician Assistant Studies program until July 2014, when he became the program director.

His appointment as department chair and program director was effective July 1.

– Andy Meek

Rockabilly Festival Planned for Memphis

Memphis is getting a rockabilly festival.

The first Memphis International Rockabilly Festival will take place Aug. 15-16 in the Edge District near Downtown, outside of Sun Studio at 106 Union Ave. The festival, announced by Universal Fairs and In The Wings Productions, will span two stages and two city blocks, in addition to featuring a variety of Sun Records rockabilly legends along with other artists. The lineup will be revealed Wednesday, July 15.

Other attractions will include a Classic Muscle Car Hot Rod Show, a rockabilly tattoo parlor, VIP meet-and-greets, book signings and more.

– Andy Meek

Memphis Chamber, Yuletide Partner to Offer Discount

The Greater Memphis Chamber has announced a new partnership with Yuletide Office Solutions that nets chamber members a discount on office supplies.

Memphis-based Yuletide joins three other companies that are part of the chamber’s Affinity Partner Program, offering discounts to more than 2,200 chamber members in the Memphis region. The others are FedEx, Methodist Healthcare and Lab Four.

Chamber members can get a discount of 10 percent or more on a variety of Yuletide products and services including office supplies, ink and toner, office furniture, janitorial supplies, paper and printing.

– Daily News staff

CBU Master of Accountancy Program Earns Plaudits

Christian Brothers University has won praise for its Master of Accountancy program.

The program has been ranked eighth among small colleges, according to online publication and guide Masters-In-Accounting.org. The online list was ranked based on factors like number of degrees awarded, tuition, campus crime rate and student-to-faculty ratio.

CBU’s Master of Accountancy program has graduated more than 1,000 accounting alumni who are currently employed in more than 375 companies in 39 states.

The CBU accounting master’s can be completed in an intensive 10-month program or at a more gradual pace, allowing up to five years to complete. The degree offers two concentrations: forensic accounting and financial management.

– Andy Meek

Greenline Half Marathon Registration is Open

Registration for the “green” Shelby Farms Greenline Half Marathon is open.

The race, set for Oct. 11 at 8 a.m., features 13.1 miles of terrain at Shelby Farms Park and on the Greenline. The Council for Responsible Sport also has certified the half marathon as sustainable, meaning it ensures a reduction of the carbon footprint to Shelby Farms Park and the city of Memphis through the event.

Sustainable steps include compostable cups, recycle stations and participant T-shirts made from organic and recycled cotton.

A post-race party will include food from Moe’s Southwestern Grill and Humdinger’s and entertainment by Ghost Town Blues Band.

Registration is $45 until July 31, when the price bumps up to $55. On Sept. 1, it increases again to $65. Race proceeds benefit the Greenline.

The Greenline Half Marathon is presented by Christian Brothers University. Visit shelbyfarmspark.org for more information.

– Daily News staff

Gasol: Leaving Memphis Wasn’t an Option

All-Star center Marc Gasol says he’s sorry if Grizzlies’ fans worried over how long it took to learn that he wasn’t leaving Memphis, though they never had a reason to fret.

Gasol said Tuesday he already knew he wasn’t going anywhere else.

The 7-foot-1 Spaniard spoke Tuesday at a news conference that was much more a celebration with fans packing the lobby of the Grizzlies’ arena a day after Gasol signed his five-year contract. Although the Grizzlies didn’t release terms of the deal, The Associated Press previously reported Gasol had agreed on a five-year maximum contract worth more than $100 million.

Gasol says he needed to reflect after the season ended but told Grizzlies owner Robert Pera over dinner July 1 in Spain he would remain with Memphis.

– The Associated Press

U of M Begins Selling Football Ticket Packages

The University of Memphis is offering several ticket packages for the upcoming football season.

A the “pick 3 premium mini-plan” includes tickets to the Ole Miss game plus any two other Tigers home games. A “pick 3 mini-plan” consists of three games excluding the Ole Miss game.

The prices for the premium mini-plan are $132 for lower sideline seats and $66 for upper sideline/end zone seats.

The mini-plan that excludes the Ole Miss game is priced at $84 for lower sideline seats and $36 for upper sideline/end zone seats.

Season tickets along with mini-plans are currently on sale through the Athletic Ticket Office. Visit www.the901club.com for more information.

Single game tickets go on sale Monday, Aug. 3. A presale for Tiger Scholarship Fund donors starts the week of July 27.

In addition to season and min-plan tickets being currently on sale, Liberty Bowl Blue Lot season parking passes are also currently available for $65.

Memphis opens the 2015 season Sept. 5 against Missouri State. The home schedule is highlighted by a nationally-televised, Thursday night game against Cincinnati on Sept. 24. Memphis plays host to Ole Miss on Oct. 17.

– Don Wade

PROPERTY SALES 101 603 9,602
MORTGAGES 92 538 10,616
BUILDING PERMITS 215 1,282 20,958
BANKRUPTCIES 51 408 6,108