(Memphis) Memphis is one of seven cities that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has recognized as “Enterprising Cities.”
Job creation, economic growth and crime reduction are reasons the Bluff City was chosen.
You can see the economic growth in many areas like Cooper Young, Overton Square and the Broad Avenue corridor.
“Going into the core city and bringing back those areas which were just a few months ago were just deserts with absolutely nothing going on there,” said Mayor Wharton about what has changed in those areas just recently.
“We can afford the initial investment and then take care of the infrastructure. I’m convinced if we kick it off, that the people will see the value and they’ll sustain it themselves,” Wharton added.
And despite Tennessee’s higher than 8 percent unemployment rate, the mayor is also pushing Memphians to be prepared for jobs that are coming to the area.
“You got to help yourself if you want somebody to help you. We've got job training programs up to here, the difficulty is getting folks to get up,” said Wharton.
The recognition pointed to the Mayor’s Innovation Delivery Team that is being fueled by $5 million from Bloomberg Philanthropies.
The team is behind pushes like Memphis Gun Down and economic revitalization projects.
Splash Creative business founder David Wayne Brown said he chose the Broad Avenue area because he could see the potential.
“Since I’ve moved in we’ve had 25 other businesses move into just the three block area east to west. We’ve had $20 million in revitalized properties occur,” said Brown.