We Midtowners can keep on dreaming about being able to buy decent underwear, cute bed and bath items, and toys for the kiddies, west of of East Parkway at our very own big-box department store. The vast urban area roughly bounded by McNeil, Poplar, Court and Cleveland was to be the site of not only a big-box store, but upscale high-density urban housing, and other mixed use community-enhancing goodies promised by the developers.
Hopes for the illusive big box took a big dashing last week as the property slipped into foreclosure.Â The Daily News reports that the Miami-based WSG Memphis LLC, the Miami-based firm has defaulted onÂ a $14 million loan from Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. dated April 30, 2007.
I saw a presentation by the developers a couple of years ago, and they released some renderings and there was a general feeling of excitement that something big was going to happen in this blighted area.Â Funny that after the initial hoopla, not much happened.Â A few of the structures were demolished and hauled away but many, especially multi-unit apartment buildings were left to squatters, vandals, fire and the elements. The site was un-fenced until recently, when a ramshackle chain link fence was installed.Â And now I guess it becomes a tax payer expense to secure the area.
Maybe American Wholesale Grocers would consider the site to make their already-preparedÂ and aborted plans for Overton Square come to life – and maybe add a Family Dollar for good measure.