Pyramid area businesses react to tentative Bass Pro date

By Jason Miles - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Action News 5 was first to hear the date Bass Pro hopes to open a new mega-store inside the empty Pyramid straight from Mayor A C Wharton's mouth.

"Which is November, 2011," said Wharton.

Contract negotiations with the city continue, but seismic and other issues are resolved.  Pen could be put to paper during a meeting next week.

"I've always thought it would happen," said Linda Thomas.  "It was just a matter of time."

Thomas owns the Red Fish Gallery on North Main.  She believes the $100 million dollar investment by Bass Pro will spawn a rebirth in the area.      

"In fact, I'm gonna have a party," she said.

We interviewed the owners of Precious Cargo when Bass Pro Shops first became interested in the nearby arena.  But five years was too long for them to wait.  They were among those forced to close.

"When The Pyramid was The Pyramid and they had the games, there was a lot of traffic in this area," she said. "But it's just not that way anymore."

"We're talking hundreds of thousands of dollars not coming to this restaurant with it not being used," added longtime restaurateur Jake Schorr.

Schorr managed to hang on, and believes Bass Pro's eventual splash will reach far beyond the Pinch District.

"It's downtown, it's midtown, it's West Memphis, it's all of us," he said.

Schorr says waiting another year and a half is nothing considering the time that has already passed.

Copyright 2010 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.