Possible closing of Wesley Ave. stirs debate - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Possible closing of Wesley Ave. stirs debate

Council chambers were crammed Tuesday night with people on both sides of this debate.

"And this whole thing is about protecting our doctors, our patients, our nurses," said Homer Branan with Methodist South.

The hospital believes closing a 900 foot section of Wesley Drive will cure problems of crime and campus safety.

"If we do not provide the people in Whitehaven a safe environment, you can bet they're going to go to Mississippi," Branan added.

But many doctors, and others who operate businesses in the area, want to keep the street open.

"We're living in a free society--we don't need another wall," said one man.

"And why close a street off for one facility when the street serves many restaurants as well as the community?" asked another opponent.

Both sides presented petitions. Each had about a thousand names. Council members conceded the difficulty of their decision.

"Because you both have great issues," Myron Lowery told the crowd.

It appeared some had already made up their minds.

"More than 3800 people travel that street a day--that's enormous traffic to re-route," said Tajuan Stout Mitchell.

"I'm for 60 to 90 days and ya'll come back," proposed chairman Edmund Ford.

Ultimately, the council took his suggestion and tabled the issue until after the first of the year.

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