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VOL. 131 | NO. 256 | Monday, December 26, 2016

Daily Digest

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Cordova’s Future LA Fitness Site Sells for $2.4M

LA Fitness is one step closer to opening a Cordova location.

Insomnia Inc., the company owned by former topless-club operator Steve Cooper, sold two parcels near its former restaurant/nightclub on Fischer Steel Road to Orlando, Florida-based National Retail Properties Inc. for $2.4 million, according to a Dec. 20 warranty deed. The same day as the sale, Fitness International LLC, an affiliate of L.A. Fitness International LLC, signed a lease with National Retail Properties for the property.

The lease covers approximately 3 acres of land at 773 N. Germantown Parkway for a term of 19 years, with one option to extend the lease for six years and three options to extend it for five years each.

LA Fitness filed a $4.5 million building permit application in August, seeking to build a gym on the parcel that formerly served as a parking lot for Cooper’s restaurant at 7955 Fischer Steel.

Cooper’s restaurant concept faced controversy from the time it opened in 2009 as Stella Marris. Neighborhood groups feared Cooper would flip the restaurant, which had no windows, and convert it to a strip club.

Cooper closed it for remodeling in 2010, less than a year after its opening. In early 2011, the Memphis City Council approved a moratorium on compensated dance permits aimed at making it more difficult for Cooper to flip the club. Cooper maintained that was never his intention. Cooper took the city to court – Chancery and Federal – over the moratorium and got his dance permit at the end of 2011.

From there, veteran restaurateur Ronnie Grisanti opened and closed a restaurant at the location, which was followed by a short-lived nightclub named City Hall.

In April 2015, Cooper sold part of the property to Marketplace Monroe LLC, a subsidiary of Memphis-based Marketplace Development. The developer is currently building a multi-building retail center that will include national tenants such as Hardee’s and Dunkin’ Donuts.

According to National Retail Properties’ website, LA Fitness is its third-largest tenant, with 26 properties across the county that make up 3.9 percent of its total annual base rent.

Overall, the publicly traded real estate investment trust owns 2,485 properties across 48 states, including 66 properties in Tennessee, 16 in Mississippi and nine in Arkansas.

– Patrick Lantrip & Bill Dries

Memphis-Area Unemployment Dips in November

Shelby County’s preliminary unemployment rate was 5.3 percent in November, down nine-tenths of a percentage point from 6.2 percent a year ago, according to the latest figures from the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development. The November figure also marked a decrease from October’s revised rate of 5.7 percent.

The Memphis metropolitan statistical area also saw its unemployment rate dip in November; last month’s 5.1 percent rate was down from 5.4 percent in October and 6 percent in November 2015. The Memphis MSA rolls in Shelby, Fayette and Tipton counties in Tennessee; Crittenden County, Arkansas; and DeSoto, Marshall, Tate and Tunica counties in Mississippi.

Statewide, the unemployment rate was 4.8 percent in November, while the U.S. rate was 4.6 percent.

– Daily News staff

Hollywood Feed Opens First Georgia Location

Memphis-based Hollywood Feed has expanded into Georgia. The holistic pet food and product retailer opened its newest location in Roswell, an Atlanta suburb, just before Christmas and plans to open a handful of additional locations in the Atlanta area over the next few months.

“We’ve been looking forward to entering the Atlanta market for some time and are thrilled to have found locations that offer the optimal fit for our store layout and our customer base,” Hollywood Feed president Shawn McGhee said in a written statement. “Atlanta is ideal for us because it is a robust market filled with dedicated pet owners who desire natural and holistic pet food and treat options for their four-legged family members.”

The new Roswell location is approximately 2,880 square feet and offers natural and holistic pet food, treats and products, in addition to holding regular pet adoption events featuring local rescue groups.

Hollywood Feed has nearly 50 locations across the southeastern U.S. Along with the new Georgia store, its footprint includes stores in Tennessee, Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi and Texas.

– Daily News staff

Tigers Outfielder on AAC Preseason All-Conference Team

Senior outfielder Chris Carrier has been named to the American Athletic Conference Preseason All-Conference team.

Carrier, a Memphis native, has a career batting average of .261 in 115 games played with 65 RBI and 67 runs scored. The Christian Brothers High School product started 55 games last season, batting .280 and leading the team with 38 RBI and 45 runs scored. Carrier also led the Tigers with 16 doubles and six home runs. He also stole 15 bases in 16 attempts.

The all-conference teams were released in conjunction with the league’s preseason poll. Memphis and UCF were picked tied for seventh in the poll.

Memphis opens the 2017 regular season against Tennessee with a three-game series at FedExPark that begins Feb. 17. The Tigers will play 32 games at FedExPark and two games downtown at AutoZone Park in 2017.

– Don Wade

Habitat Memphis Receives $160,000 Grant

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Memphis has received a $160,000 Priority Market Program grant from the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation toward work in the Bearwater Park neighborhood, just north of Uptown.

This grant supports Habitat’s building and revitalization efforts during fall 2016 and will also help Habitat evaluate its efforts in the area north of Downtown. Wells Fargo recently supported the Jimmy & Rosalynn Carter Work Project in Memphis in August and has supported Memphis Habitat’s Neighborhood Revitalization program since 2012.

“We are incredibly thankful for Wells Fargo’s continued support of our holistic approach to neighborhood revitalization. Because of their support, we’ve been able to serve more Memphians in Uptown, Oakhaven and now Bearwater Park,” said Dwayne Spencer, president and CEO of Memphis Habitat. “Partnerships like this enable us to have a larger impact on the community and help more families find strength, stability and self-reliance through new and improved places to call home.”

Grants for the Priority Markets Program were selected from requests submitted by Wells Fargo team members who nominated nonprofits needing assistance for large-scale neighborhood revitalization projects.

The 2016 Wells Fargo Housing Foundation Priority Markets Program provided grants for neighborhood stabilization projects to stimulate growth, stability and investment in distressed areas. Since 2009, the program has provided grants totaling more than $42 million for nonprofits in 125 U.S. communities.

– Don Wade

MORTGAGES 110 170 916
BUILDING PERMITS 133 290 1,948