“What’s in your wallet?” If you’re the folks at Capital One, it’s that big unfinished condo project blocking my view of the river.
According to this story from the Memphis Business Journal, the Horizon high rise was bought by Capital One for $17.4 million during a foreclosure sale on Tuesday.
The developer of the project had defaulted on a loan. Work stopped work on the $67 million luxury property a few weeks ago, leaving me (and maybe other folks) to wonder what the heck was going to happen to it. After all, phase one (the 16-story building and parking garage facing Riverside) were supposed to be finished last month… after getting started in late ’07.
Most mornings I turned onto Riverside from Carolina, I’d see throngs of construction workers dashing across the street to go to work on the project. Then, all of a sudden, nothing. I’m pretty sure whoever owns the BP station on the corner was heartbroken, since those guys filed in and out of the convenience story and deli all day long, putting who knows how much money into the cash register. The MBJ story says work could restart in a couple of weeks.
I wonder what shape the finished project will end up taking, if it indeed gets finished. It was supposed to have three phases and 350 units. The single building that’s up now only has 155-units, and was switched from condos for sale to apartments for rent. If the economy hadn’t tanked, I’m sure that it would have dramatically boosted that edge of downtown, bringing stores and other shopping with it (maybe even a real downtown grocery store! I know the Wal-Mart in West Memphis is only a couple of miles away — I gave someone a ride there once — I’m just not a Wal-Mart kinda guy).
I’m just hoping this is the first sign of renewed activity in this part of town. There are a lot of good things happening downtown; I’d like to see that continue.
All Previous Letters Are Rescinded
I love politics in Memphis. I have truly reached the point where I want things to get weirder than they already are. Will the mayor really leave office at the end of the month? The end of the year? The end of his term? Ever? It doesn’t matter. It really doesn’t.
Maybe there’s legitimate business he wants to accomplish before he relinquishes the reins of power. Maybe he’s just messin’ with folks. I was listening to the jocks on a morning radio show complaining bitterly about the latest developments and asking whether the City Council could just accept his original retirement letter and kick him out.
They were missing the point. Regardless of who he has to turn a resignation/retirement letter in to, the mayor works for the people of the City of Memphis. They gave him the job, so they’re really the only ones who can take it from him if he doesn’t want to leave on his own. And that’s just the way it should be.
Tennessee cities have put some real doozies in office (ask any longtime Nashvillians about Mayor Bill Boner). And even though it shouldn’t have to be said (again), we get the leadership we deserve. Whether or not Hizzoner has been good for the city or not (your call), he keeps getting the most votes. If people are tired of him; he’ll find out when he runs for Congress (if he runs for Congress).
If the mayor really wants to run for Congress ,he’ll have an easier time of raising money if he’s not mayor. So, if that’s his goal, he’ll leave office on his terms. If he comes to the conclusion that he might not win or it’s not really what he wants — he ain’t goin’ nowhere. Which is pretty much what I said when all this got started. Don’t worry, he’ll keep us guessing… and I’m loving it!