National retailers opening stores in Whitehaven

WATCH: National retailers opening stores in Whitehaven

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two national retail stores are coming to Whitehaven. Starbucks Coffee and Madrag clothing store will be setting up shop soon.

FOX13 has learned these companies are not only bringing new jobs, it’s addressing another big issue in the neighborhood.

That issue is blight – something we’ve seen all across the city.

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Soon, Madrag will be opening inside an already busy shopping center. The once vacant storefront will be getting a facelift.

National retailer Madrag is over the 6,000 square feet lot off Plaza Avenue in Whitehaven.

Chris Davis is the president of Greater Whitehaven Economic Redevelopment Corporation, he explained to FOX13, “Well beyond the economic impact in terms of putting people to work, how it will impact the tax base. It gives us another retail option in Whitehaven, but most significantly it helps us to address the issue of blight.”

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Just ten minutes down the road, Starbucks will be setting up shop on the corner of Elvis Presley Boulevard and Winchester Road.

It's not the only new coffee shop in Whitehaven, Muggin Coffehouse, a black-owned business, plans to up its doors by the end of the year.

We asked community leaders how Starbucks may impact this small business.

Davis said, "I think when you look at the number of people who live in Whitehaven, you look at our purchasing power, there is more than enough business to go around for Muggin and Starbucks. In fact, I jokingly say there's more than one gas station in Whitehaven and we can accommodate more than one coffee shop."

Davis said they’re hopeful this is just the start for more economic development in Whitehaven.

“We want to say to small business owners that are located in other parts of the city, this might be a good time to come to Whitehaven in terms of either moving to Whitehaven or opening up a second location in Whitehaven.”

It's still too early to know if either one of these companies will be applying for tax breaks or incentives.
Community leaders said they expect construction by the end of this year.