City to discuss Fairgrounds redevelopment again

Mid-South Coliseum at the old Fairgrounds

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The city is reopening discussion on the future of the Fairgrounds.

Redevelopment of the 155-acre site in the heart of Memphis has been the topic of studies and public debate ever since Libertyland, the Coliseum and the Mid-South Fair were shuttered or moved off the city property several years ago.

“The Fairgrounds is a historic site in the middle of our city that means so much to many Memphians, which is why it’s important that we harness its full potential,” said Paul Young, director of the city’s Division of Housing and Community Development.

The most recent plan involved establishing much of Midtown as a Tourism Development Zone to help fund sports fields and a retail center. Those plans halted after HCD manager Robert Lipscomb was relieved of his post.

Several public meetings have been scheduled by the city’s Division of Housing and Community Development.

Mayor Jim Strickland hopes to submit an application for the TDZ to the state by the end of this year.

Public meetings are set for 5-7 p.m. Aug. 10 and Sept. 21, and 5:30-7 p.m. Nov. 6, at the Kroc Center on East Parkway.

The first two meetings are open-house format, and the third meeting will present a redevelopment plan.