Mayor supports plan to house WiseAcre in Coliseum - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Mayor supports plan to house WiseAcre in Coliseum

(Source: WMC Action News 5) (Source: WMC Action News 5)
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -

Support is brewing for plans to let WiseAcre move into the Mid-South Coliseum that has sat vacant for more than a decade.

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said the beer proposal was the only deal meeting criteria.

"We are tired of hearing about the coliseum, and there is nothing being done," said Memphian Willie Banks.

Mayor Jim Strickland said he is backing the company who has eyes on it.

"One of things we wanted was a good quality development and no city money, and Wiseacre is the only deal that come forward that fit that criteria," said Mayor Strickland.

The city council voted Tuesday to lease the Coliseum to Wiseacre Brewing Company.

WiseAcre wants to add a second brewing facility in Memphis and said two weeks ago that the Coliseum remains one of several options it is considering.

"They could sublease part of the coliseum for restaurant or bars or anything like that and the city would get 30 percent," said Mayor Strickland.

Over the years, you may recall the Mid-South Coliseum has housed tons of concerts, Memphis wrestling and Memphis Tigers basketball games.

Brian Saulsberry said he had a plan, too. He spoke at a city council meeting Tuesday, but his plan was not approved.

"For us, it's kind of like you're walking into something that was almost predetermined," said Saulsberry.

He wanted to revitalize the Coliseum to make it more of a smaller entertainment venue, like the Landers Center, and even house AAU basketball games. 

CLICK HERE to view Saulsberry's full plan.

He said the city would initially get about $250,000 per year in concert ticket sales.

"What we wanted the city to do was to understand the type of revenue we are creating and could redirect that back into programs for the youth," said Saulsberry.

WiseAcre now has six months to decide whether or not to move forward with its plan.

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