E’s Cafe refuse to sell to developers in multi-million dollar project

E’s Cafe refuse to sell to developers in multi-million dollar project

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - A 56 million dollar mixed use development is proposed on a 2.9-acre property in the Medical District.

It will have retail, parking and apartments.

One business on this property isn’t selling and the developers told WMC Action News 5 it will have to be sandwiched into the new development.

“I think Midtown is going to be gorgeous when they start,” said Melveana Leake, a Memphis resident. “They’re already in the process of upgrading Midtown and I think it is going to get better and better as they renovate and move things around here in the Midtown area.”

WMC showed Leake a photo of renderings for the proposed URBN on Union Development.

To get an idea of what it will look like, you just have to look at Highland Row that was developed in part by Scott Kern and Malcolm Wilson who are the developers of URBN on Union.

The plan is for 270 apartments, a 411 space parking structure and more than 17,000 square feet of retail.

It would transform the area replacing Iberia bank and a new look for First Horizon.

There are also chain link fencing and parking lots with weeds growing up through asphalt that would also go.

The property borders Union, Cleveland and Claybrook.

The area has Methodist University hospital across Union as well as surrounding medical offices.

What will not be leaving the site where the development is planned is the building that housed E’s Cafe. The owner of the property, David Sloan, said he and Kern and Wilson could not reach an agreement on the sale.

“We’ve had talks with Kern and Wilson. We had reached an agreement for 1308 Union property going into the project but when we received the paperwork it was far different from our verbal agreement,” he said.

Kern and Wilson told WMC they just could not reach an agreement.

Sloan said he has a new tenant for the space where E’s Cafe used to be.

“It will be another restaurant and having this effect apartments around will really be good for business.”

Kern and Wilson said they will just have to build around it, so it’s not clear what that will look like.

If everything is approved the plan is to start construction in September.

Copyright 2021 WMC. All rights reserved.