Front Street reopens to traffic Monday marking milestone in convention center renovation project


MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Front Street reopened early Monday morning months after it was shut down due to renovations at the Renasant Convention Center.

While construction to the building is not yet complete, the Memphis Tourism Commission says crews have made major progress on the $200 million convention center project. They said they can now safely reopen Front Street between Jackson and Poplar to both drivers and pedestrians.

Front Street was closed on October 7, 2019, as renovation began at the Renasant Convention Center. It was only supposed to be closed a few months, but COVID-19 slowed down the project.

“It marks a real milestone in this project getting to this completion point,” said Dean Dennis with the Renasant Convention Center.

“They are going to be amazed by a complete transformation. Wall to wall, floor to ceiling, inch by inch it’s been transformed into a new building.”

The 46-year-old building has a new lobby and second floor ballroom. A new glass walkway leads to several new meeting rooms and outdoor terraces with views of the river and downtown.

On the Main Street side of the convention center there’s a new pedestrian walkway to the Shertaon and new trolley stops.

“We have really become a premier meeting-destination in the Mid-South and based on the kind of building it is it gives us the opportunity to really set us apart in terms of meetings and conventions there,” said Dennis.

Events have already been booked for January.

“We are hopeful and optimistic those happen the way everyone wants them to.”

Main Street on the east side of the building is still closed with an anticipated reopening date of October 28.

A look at improvements at the convention center along Front Street (Courtesy of Memphis Travel)
A look at improvements at the convention center along Front Street (Courtesy of Memphis Travel)

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