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VOL. 133 | NO. 63 | Wednesday, March 28, 2018


Bill Dries

Last Word: Graceland Responds, The Hustle's First Season and Memphis Rent

By Bill Dries

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Sun Studio getting a fresh coat of paint Tuesday as city road crews were redoing some lines on Downtown streets including turning arrows in the left curb lane that always need pointing out to visitors baffled by the Memphis enigma that is one-way streets.

Meanwhile, the centerpiece of “I Am A Man” Plaza by Clayborn Temple is bundled in a blue tarp as workers and landscapers prepare the park area as well as the nearby streets. All of this in anticipation of next week’s peak of the observance of the 1968 sanitation workers strike and the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

This is turning into a busy week on the Whitehaven front – specifically the Graceland bubble.

Elvis Presley Enterprises responding to our story about City Hall looking for some kind of agreement between Graceland and the part of the Grizz that runs FedExForum that would preserve the forum noncompete the Grizz have with the city and county yet still allow Graceland to build some kind of event space where Heartbreak Hotel is.

Graceland issued a statement Tuesday afternoon saying its latest proposal for a convention center space seeking bond financing from EDGE does not violate the noncompete since it’s not a tax break like a PILOT or TDZ funding or TIF money. The statement amounts to a counter offer of sorts. There’s no give in Graceland’s assertion that the noncompete doesn’t apply to what it wants to do. The give is probably in its call for city and county governments to join it in Chancery Court to get a court to sort out what the noncompete means. The Grizz seem certain that they know precisely what the noncompete means although we await any further word they might offer on that and other subjects.

Crosstown Concourse has two new food tenants as it prepares to mark a year since its formal opening.

Two new food tenants coming to Crosstown Concourse this summer – just about in time to mark the first anniversary of the formal opening of the concourse. The addition of Global Café and Lucy J’s means some changes in the configuration of Curb Market while keeping most of its inventory and its hot bar.

Shelby County Schools is a step closer to a move out of its longtime building near the Fairgrounds to the Bayer Building on Jackson Avenue. Also at Tuesday night’s school board meeting, superintendent Dorsey Hopson says he is meeting with high school students who want to join the April 20 national walkout to protest gun violence.

Grizz Guard Kobi Simmons is a product of the Hustle, the Southaven G-League team that just completed its first season.

The Hustle – the Southaven G-League team to develop players for the Grizz – closed out its season with a 21-29 record. But in the development leagues that’s really not the point. And the head coach of the Hustle points out it is the youngest team in the G League, which may be far more important to the Grizz than the record south of the state line.

A Miami-based LLC buys an apartment complex on the Bartlett-Memphis line, The Meadows of Memphis, for $13 million from a New York LLC.

New figures from RealPage, an analytics company, show the Memphis apartment market with 2.3 percent rent growth in 2017, which is about the middle of the pack nationally. And the analysts at RealPage say that goes to the stability of the Memphis market for owners who often own in several markets and are looking for a consistent revenue flow from their properties.

The city has an occupancy rate of 93.1 percent and one of the factors Real Page is critical of is “somewhat obsolete product in not-great neighborhoods.”

Transnetyx, the local genotyping company that works with biomedical researchers, has been bought by a St. Louis private equity firm.

The University of Tennessee Health Science Center has an infectious disease institute and in keeping with the larger trend toward interdisciplinary pursuits, the institute will be doing what is known as “convergence research.”

At just about a week to the filing deadline for the August state and federal primaries and nonpartisan county races, we look at how the ballot is filling in especially in the legislative races.

Atop our Memphis Newsmakers segment, Teri Hardister McCann of the Mid-South Eating Disorders Association, talks about an inter disciplinary approach to such disorders and misconceptions about them.

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