City looks for answers on Bass Pro Shops deal

When Bass Pro Shops announced plans to move a mega-store into the Pyramid, the retailers said their new location would include a hotel, a restaurant, and a giant fish canopy that would guide customers inside. It has been nearly a year since the company expressed interest, and it's deal with the City of Memphis is still not firm.

Wednesday, Memphis Chief Financial Officer said the city would press Bass Pro for answers.

"You really want to meet with them and say, 'Look are you really going to do this? Are you going to do it or not, and what time frame are you going to do it in,'" he said.

Lipscomb said a meeting with Bass Pro is scheduled for the end of August.

The City of Memphis previously received a letter of intent from Bass Pro Shops, and the company has sent engineers to look at the Pyramid to make sure it will hold up seismically.  Still, city officials are pressing for a development deal, something that would be much more binding.

"We want to communicate to them that first of all, if we don't get an iron clad by that date, then we got have no choice but moving on with some other options," Lipscomb said.

As it is now, the Pyramid is costing taxpayers more than $1million a year to keep open.  In October, when the arena officially closes, the operational price will drop by half.

Lipscomb said the Pyramid needs a tenant, and the city has started looking for possible replacements if Bass Pro Shops backs out.