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VOL. 132 | NO. 202 | Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Daily Digest

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Midtown Market Developers Pull $24M Building Permit

Midtown Market, a mixed-use project Belz Enterprises and Harbour Retail Partners are developing at the the corner of Union Avenue and McLean Boulevard, appears set to move forward soon.

Developers have filed a $24 million building permit application for the project, which appears to be in line with a scaled-back outline of the project presented to Downtown Memphis officials earlier this year. Interim Downtown Memphis Commission president Jennifer Oswalt told The Daily News, in response to the permit, the project looks headed in the same direction as plans presented to the Center City Revenue Finance Corp. and Design Review board in February, and “we are excited that it is getting started.”

Montgomery Martin Contractors LLC is listed as the contractor on the permit application.

The plan for the project – as spelled out earlier this year and via the new building permit – is to renovate the vacant eight-story Artisan Hotel into apartments; to demolish the Towery office building at the southwest corner of the intersection and to build new commercial space there.

– Andy Meek

Collierville Man Awarded $140M in Androgel Lawsuit

A federal jury in Chicago, Illinois, has awarded a Collierville resident $140 million in punitive damages against pharmaceutical company AbbVie Inc., the plaintiff and maker of Androgel, a topical men’s testosterone replacement product the jury found caused the man to have a heart attack.

The jury awarded Jeffrey Konrad of Collierville $140,000 in compensatory damages related to his 2010 heart attack, which occurred after his primary care doctor prescribed Androgel for symptoms attributed to low testosterone levels.

Five law firms representing Konrad, including Memphis firm Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz PLC, argued that AbbVie failed to adequately warn consumers about the cardiovascular risks associated with taking Androgel, in spite of clinical data linking use of the drug with “significant health risks,” including heart attacks and strokes, according to a release.

Androgel was originally developed to treat a condition called hypogonadism, but was subsequently marketed more broadly to treat conditions associated with “low T” or low testosterone levels, such as loss of energy, sex drive and moodiness, the law firms argued.

Androgel was approved for commercial use by the FDA in 2000.

The case, Konrad v. AbbVie Inc., is the first in a class of more 4,200 cases accusing AbbVie and other drug makers of selling testosterone replacement drugs and failing to warn doctors and consumers of potentially deadly side effects.

– Daily News staff

Dickson First Black President Of Tennessee Realtors

Leon Dickson Sr., owner and principal broker of BenchMark at Southwind Realtors LLC in Memphis, has been installed as the Tennessee Realtors’ 2018 president, becoming the first black president of the organization in its nearly 100-year history.

A Realtor for 28 years, Dickson’s experience spans the national, state and local levels. For the National Association of Realtors, he has served as a Professional Standards Committee member, a director, and a member of the Risk Management Committee. In Tennessee, he was president-elect in 2017, secretary-treasurer in 2016, and a division vice president in 2013 and 2014. In addition, he has served as a TREEF trustee, a director, a Budget & Finance Committee member and more.

Locally, Dickson served as president of the Memphis Area Association of Realtors in 2011, among other leadership roles. His distinctions include being named Realtor of the Year by MAAR in 2012 and named BenchMark Realtors’ 2005 top producer for real estate and mortgages.

He is a member of the National Association of Real Estate Brokers, the Women’s Council of Realtors and the Certified Real Estate Specialists chapter, and Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland appointed him to serve on the MLGW Board of Commissioners last November.

– Daily News staff

Tigers’ Ferguson Named AAC Offensive Player of the Week

Senior University of Memphis quarterback Riley Ferguson set career bests for completions, attempts, yards and touchdown passes in a 70-31 conference road win at UConn and was named the American’s Offensive Player of the Week for his second 400-plus yard career game.

Ferguson, who had now passed for 48 career touchdowns in just 18 games at Memphis, tied the school and American record with seven touchdown passes in the win at UConn. This is the fifth time in his two-year Tiger career, and the second this season, that he has earned the league’s offensive weekly award.

A transfer from Coffeyville Community College in Kansas, Ferguson currently ranks fourth in career passing yards, with 5,233, heading into a Saturday matchup against No. 24/25-ranked Navy. His 48 career touchdown passes currently ranks third, behind Danny Wimprine (81) and Paxton Lynch (59). With his third touchdown pass in the win at UConn, Ferguson passed former Tiger Martin Hankins’ two-year mark of 43 passes to move to third in the record book.

Memphis will host a nationally ranked opponent at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium for the second time in three games when Navy rolls into town Saturday, Oct. 14, for a 2:45 p.m. game that will be televised on ESPNU. Navy is 5-0 and has won both previous meetings against the Tigers, including a 45-20 win in Memphis in 2015. Last year, the Midshipmen prevailed 42-28 over the Tigers.

– Don Wade

Guest House at Graceland Named Among ‘Best of Best’

The Guest House at Graceland is among the “best of the best” in tourism and similar amenities as listed by Destinations magazine.

The resort-hotel, owned by Elvis Presley Enterprises, made a list of 42 hotels, museums, festivals and other attractions that the travel and tour magazine considers worth visiting.

Guest House opened a year ago this month, the beginning of a $135 million expansion of the Graceland campus in Whitehaven that also included Elvis Presley’s Memphis, an entertainment complex with restaurants, museums and shops on the west side of Elvis Presley Bouelvard, opposite the mansion that was the home of the late entertainer Elvis Presley.

– Bill Dries

PROPERTY SALES 21 82 6,474
MORTGAGES 7 53 4,088
BUILDING PERMITS 240 353 15,714
BANKRUPTCIES 38 58 3,328