Downtown redevelopment includes restaurant, speakeasy, yoga studio, office space

By Mary Cashiola  – Managing Editor, Memphis Business Journal

Jul 5, 2018, 7:30am

A circa 1910 building the Downtown Memphis Commission (DMC) is keen to see redeveloped may soon be home to a restaurant, a bar, a yoga studio and office space.

Applicant Tom Intrator, doing business as 18 S. Main Mem LLC, is asking for an 13.5-year PILOT (payment-in-lieu-of-taxes) from the DMC's Center City Revenue Finance Corp. (CCRFC).

Should the PILOT be approved, the property located at that address — 18 S. Main St. — and called a "long-neglected site" in the PILOT application, would undergo a $4.7 million renovation.

In October of last year, the DMC invited architects to tour 18 S. Main as part of a unique proposal: The DMC had an option to buy the property for $710,000 and was looking for a developer with a viable redevelopment plan. As part of the deal, the developer would only have to reimburse the organization $510,000 of the purchase price.

Plans for the redevelopment include a "speakeasy" and a yoga studio in the basement; a full-service restaurant on the main floor; and a single-tenant office space on the second level. More office space is planned for the third level.

At one time, the entire building was home to a Downtown department store, and in recent years, the ground floor was home to Murray's.

Staff for the CCRFC are "highly supportive" of the project, as "addressing vacancy at this location is highly consistent with the DMC's duel objectives of increasing density and improving commercial property values."

The estimated annual PILOT benefit would be $48,838, according to the application.

The application will be heard at the CCRFC's July 10 meeting. Stewart Austinwith Glankler Brown PLLC and Designshop are working on the project. Engineers Davis Patrikios Criswell Inc. also prepared a structural observation report for the building.

Intrator has been working in the Memphis market since 2013 and owns seven multifamily properties in the Bluff City, according to the PILOT application.