Archive for the ‘Livability’ Category

                  My grandmother often answered our latest whining request with the response: “if wishes were horses, beggars would ride.”  The updated version for our community:  If talk was money, MATA would have light rail to Somerville. Either way, the message is the same.  Talk is cheap. Unfortunately, […]

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by (RSS) Livability, Parks and Greening | February 17th, 2017 12:36am CST | No Comments

                  One of our favorite park advocates is Peter Harnik, who retired last year as director of the Trust for Public Land’s Center for City Park Excellence.  We can think of no one who is more responsible for the revival of the urban parks movement and is […]

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by (RSS) Livability, Neighborhoods | February 10th, 2017 12:59am CST | 5 Comments

                  About a year ago, Tim Bolding’s 91-year-old mother died, which put her 61-year-old son into a reflective mood about his priority for the next chapter of his life. After working more than three decades to provide affordable housing for Memphians frozen out of the traditional mortgage […]

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by (RSS) Livability | February 7th, 2017 12:28am CST | 23 Comments

              A few weeks ago, we got a telephone call from a reporter based in New York who was asking for an update about Memphis.  Here’s what we sent him: Memphis is the kind of city that can make you cry.  Just ask Justin Timberlake. Being inducted in the […]

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                  The City of Memphis is in the throes of a budget process that will produce a proposed budget by the Strickland Administration in about 10 weeks, and just when officials thought it couldn’t get any harder, it now has the uncertainties connected to massive federal budget […]

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by (RSS) Arts and Culture, Livability | January 18th, 2017 12:49am CST | No Comments

                  The UrbanArt Commission is the Jonas Salk of Memphis arts and culture. Remember him?  He’s the medical researcher who invented the first polio vaccine that transformed the futures of tens of thousands of children.  In his low key way, he simply went about his work unconcerned […]

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              We wrote 153 blog posts in 2016, and we always look back to see which subjects you had the most interest in.  Clearly, last year, that was parks, particularly the campaign to protect the greensward at Overton Park. The following are the 15 most-read blog posts of the […]

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                  The following is “The state’s long arm stops Memphis again,” from my 9:01 column published in The Commercial Appeal on October 26, 2016, followed by a June 24, 2015, blog post, “Can We Now Send Nathan Bedford Forest Back to the Cemetery. The State’s Long Arm: Sometimes, […]

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by (RSS) Livability, Parks and Greening | November 15th, 2016 12:18am CST | No Comments

Almost a century ago, Shelby County Government started buying up land “out in the country” for the working prison farm envisioned by Memphis political boss, E.H. Crump. That began a journey in 1918 that against all odds culminated in the opening of Shelby Farms Park. Ultimately, Boss Crump’s idea became a self-contained, self-sufficient prison, nationally […]

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              The following is a proposal we received from a concerned Memphian: Payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT) is a program which reduces or eliminates property taxes for a period of time as an incentive for investment in a new development or expansion of an existing business within the […]

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                Memphis Art Park has posted designs from its latest master plan online, and once again, it’s plowing the way for smarter thinking about a higher and better use of prominent downtown real estate. We’ve made no secret of our support for this plan since it was first […]

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                Twenty years ago, public art in Memphis consisted primarily of statues connected to various wars, Hebe in Court Square, W. C. Handy on Beale Street, and a half dozen or so downtown sculptures from the 1970s like John McIntire’s Muse, Richard Hunt’s I’ve Been to the Mountaintop, […]

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by (RSS) Downtown Revitalization, Livability | July 29th, 2016 12:31am CST | 5 Comments

                The following is a post from July 16, 2006, about how to measure success in Memphis.  This is the latest in our regular feature flashing back to blog posts from 10 years ago: For too long, we’ve had the tendency here to measure success by comparing Memphis […]

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                  The lingering controversy about Memphis Zoo parking on the greensward seems finally to have run its course.  Barring a last minute glitch in fine tuning a few details of the accord approved unanimously by Memphis City Council, the two and a half years’ dispute has been […]

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by (RSS) Livability, Trends and Issues | July 18th, 2016 12:55am CST | 6 Comments

                    By TOM JONES Memphis has been surprising people for more than a century, and it happened again in the wake of the Great Recession. With Memphis hit harder than almost any city in the country, many commentators predicted that it could not recover from the […]

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It could well be that we look back to today’s decision regarding zoo parking on Overton Park’s greensward as the seminal moment when we came face-to-face with the brand of leadership that Jim Strickland brought to the mayor’s office. All in all, his decision was a gutsy political call and flew in the face of […]

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by (RSS) Livability, Neighborhoods | June 27th, 2016 12:10am CST | 2 Comments

The “breaking news” headlines go to the demolition of a long-abandoned motel near the eastern end of the Memphis & Arkansas Bridge that’s been a high visibility eyesore for decades, but the work to fight blight with the most impact on the city at large is under way at the neighborhood level. There’s never been […]

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                  Some things just baffle us. First, there was the decision in 2014 by City of Memphis to close the western two lanes of Riverside Drive to traffic and designate them for bicyclists.  For the cynical among us, there was the suspicion that the change in 2014 […]

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