Selling Beale Street one option presented to planning committee - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Selling Beale Street one option presented to planning committee

By Lori Brown - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - As the City of Memphis prepares to take ownership of Beale Street after a falling out with Performa Leasing Company, could the city actually sell the iconic street?

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton wanted to make clear that selling the street touted as the number one tourism destination in Tennessee each year was not his suggestion.

"We're not considering selling it," said Wharton.  "That's an error."

Wharton said someone submitted to him the idea of selling Beale Street, so he passed along the idea with a stack of other ideas to the newly formed Beale Street Strategic Planning Committee Friday.

"One of the working papers suggested a sell, others said outside management like we do with the Cook Convention Center and the Fairgrounds," said Wharton.  "Others said let the merchants pull together and manage it."

Wharton said he would be surprised if the committee decided to recommend selling Beale Street.

"It's one of our treasures, and cities generally hold onto their treasures," he said.  "It's a jewel."

"Cities cannot survive by cannibalizing themselves," Wharton continued.  "If private hands own it, we may look at it one day and have nothing but a string of karaoke bars."

President of the Beale Street Merchants' Association Ty Agee said he thinks Beale Street business owners should be allowed to buy their buildings, while the street itself remains in the city's hands.

"We pay our taxes, and we are good for the city," said Agee.  "I think we should have a little control over our own destiny."

Agee said his worst fear is an outside group being in control.

"I hope they don't shop us out to a group," said Agee.  "For instance, New York."

Wharton said he did not want the city running Beale Street.  He said that job is for industry experts.

The committee's recommendation is expected in three to four months.

Copyright 2010 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

  • News on WMCTV.comNewsMore>>

  • BREAKDOWN: Can you have thunder without lightning?

    BREAKDOWN: Can you have thunder without lightning?

    Sunday, May 27 2018 12:06 PM EDT2018-05-27 16:06:38 GMT

    In an earlier Breakdown video, we told you about the process that causes lightning and how powerful a bolt is when it strikes the ground. In this episode of the Breakdown, we will discuss thunder and answer the question of, can you have thunder without lightning? First, a quick recap on lightning: a bolt of lightning is as hot as 54,000 degrees Fahrenheit--that is more than five times hotter than the surface of the sun! The air around the bolt heats up rapidly and it...

    More >>

    In an earlier Breakdown video, we told you about the process that causes lightning and how powerful a bolt is when it strikes the ground. In this episode of the Breakdown, we will discuss thunder and answer the question of, can you have thunder without lightning? First, a quick recap on lightning: a bolt of lightning is as hot as 54,000 degrees Fahrenheit--that is more than five times hotter than the surface of the sun! The air around the bolt heats up rapidly and it...

    More >>
  • The one year anniversary of Memphis in May-hem

    The one year anniversary of Memphis in May-hem

    Sunday, May 27 2018 10:16 AM EDT2018-05-27 14:16:11 GMT
    The toppled Tom Lee MemorialThe toppled Tom Lee Memorial
    The toppled Tom Lee MemorialThe toppled Tom Lee Memorial

    May 27 marks the one year anniversary of a devastating wind storm that struck Memphis and the Mid-South and was later dubbed Memphis in May-hem.  On the evening of Saturday May 27 a line of strong storms moved southeast out of southern Missouri and into northeastern Arkansas.  The day had been very warm and muggy and was ripe for fueling any storms that entered the area.  This was also the final day of festivities in Downtown Memphis at Tom Lee for Memphis In May a...

    More >>

    May 27 marks the one year anniversary of a devastating wind storm that struck Memphis and the Mid-South and was later dubbed Memphis in May-hem.  On the evening of Saturday May 27 a line of strong storms moved southeast out of southern Missouri and into northeastern Arkansas.  The day had been very warm and muggy and was ripe for fueling any storms that entered the area.  This was also the final day of festivities in Downtown Memphis at Tom Lee for Memphis In May a...

    More >>
  • 901Fest caps off the Memphis in May festivities

    901Fest caps off the Memphis in May festivities

    Saturday, May 26 2018 11:20 PM EDT2018-05-27 03:20:41 GMT
    (Source: WMC Action News 5)(Source: WMC Action News 5)
    (Source: WMC Action News 5)(Source: WMC Action News 5)

    Saturday afternoon Memphians filled Tom Lee Park by the river to celebrate everything 901. 

    More >>

    Saturday afternoon Memphians filled Tom Lee Park by the river to celebrate everything 901. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly