• New proposal for Memphis fairgrounds includes sports complex, shopping, housing, & more

    By: Amicia Ramsey

    Updated:

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Memphis is moving closer to transforming the old fairgrounds. 

    The 155 acre area includes the Liberty Bowl, Tiger Lane, The Children's Museum, historic buildings and other facilities. 

    The city has pin-pointed 18 acres along Central Avenue for the new development and plans to build a new sports and events complex for indoor sporting activities like basketball, cheerleading, track, and other sporting competitions. 

    Along with a multipurpose building to be used for stores, hotels, entertainments and a multi family residential area. 

    Tonight FOX13 was at a community meeting at the Maxine Steam Academy to discuss the development plans and speak to concerned residents. 

    Longtime residents of the area want to see these plans come together, but many have concerns and questions. 

    Related: Major redevelopment plan in the works for Memphis Fairgrounds

    Christy Gibbson, who lives near the Liberty Bowl, told FOX13, "We are nervously optimistic. We are excited about things." 

    "Sometimes they close down central and we can't go home. That is definitely something I am interested in keeping up with to make sure there is a plan for that."  Gibbson said.

    Many fairground buildings like the Mid-South Coliseum are unused and the city plans to remodel them and promised they wouldn't be tearing down any of the existing buildings. 

    However, the football field currently being used by the Shelby County School District will be gone. 

    During the meeting Paul A. Young, the Director of Housing & Community Development  said, "we have had some preliminary conversation and we want to have some deeper conversation about identifying a solution to replace that field. We want to make sure the kids are made whole and can do the things they enjoy." 

    The city plans to take the comments collected at Thursday's meeting and present them to the Memphis and Shelby Co. Land Use Control Board in November.

    If approved, the plan has an estimated preliminary cost of $64,000,000. And ground breaking could start as early as January.


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