Development in Collierville: What’s Next for Three of the Town’s Biggest Projects?

The Commercial Appeal

By Dima Amro

Town Is Seeing Growth from New Developments

Collierville developments continue to make progress this year, despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The Collierville Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved multiple projects in the last 10 months. Now, more companies, dwellings and attractions are headed to the town.

Here is a look at three of Collierville’s biggest projects and where they stand.

Schilling Farms Water Tower District

The board of mayor and aldermen in September approved the first phase of the Water Tower District, a mixed-use development south of Poplar Avenue.

The first phase includes 2,193 square feet of retail space and 259 rental dwellings — 27 buildings with 110 one-bedroom units, 95 two-bedroom units and 54 three-bedroom units.

The residential side is located along Schilling Boulevard West between Poplar Avenue and Winchester Boulevard.

Les Binkley, vice president of Boyle Investment — the project’s developer, expects phase one construction to begin this year and could last about two years.

Along with residential areas, the first phase contains 40,000 square feet of retail space, 50,000 square feet of office space and the corporate headquarters for IMC Companies, an intermodal logistics provider, which is already under construction.

Town Administrator James Lewellen said the Schilling Farms area offers a big commercial impact to the town and it is still growing.

“It’s big,” Lewellen said. “For the whole district we’re looking at other possibilities for commercial and additional office growth.”

The area has been in the works since the 1990s and more commercial, office and residential developments are underway.

The Farms at Bailey Station

Some seniors can expect to move into the first round of apartments at The Farms at Bailey Station in late fall, said Thomas Becher, spokesperson for the Farms.

The Farms, a $290 million senior living community in Collierville, will allow residents to move into some of the 176 apartments Nov. 15, and by the end of the year, 25 of 63 homes will be occupied.

“It is huge, an amazing project,” Lewellen said. “Every time I drive by it I look at it and say, ‘That’s big.'”

Retirement Companies of America develops and manages the Farms, which is for adults 55 and older and includes housing, a three-story clubhouse and a health campus.

Lewellen said the retirement facility attracts more people to Collierville.

The Jordan River Health Center, an onsite medical campus, is nearing completion and will open soon, Becher said.

The health campus features 60 private nursing suites, 52 private assisted-living suites, 32 memory care suites for patients with dementia and Alzheimer’s, and 4,300 square feet of inpatient and outpatient rehab facility.

The medical facility is available to anyone but members of The Farms at Bailey Station are a priority.

The development will be fully constructed by 2023.

Town Square parking garage

In July, the board unanimously approved a $1.1 million purchase agreement to acquire approximately an acre of land north of the historic Town Square to potentially add a parking garage.

Town Square in Collierville, Tenn.

This agreement began the board’s due diligence period of 120 days to determine if the site is appropriate for the garage. But after looking at another piece of land on Washington Street, east of the square, they may back off the deal, Lewellen said.

The town owns the parking area at 177 Washington St., and the board is concerned about purchasing new land when another area is only a couple minutes farther away, Lewellen said.

Currently, the land north of the square is vacant but a 55-room hotel, event center and restaurant are planned for the area to the right of it. The parking garage will complement the project, the debate is whether the garage will be right next to the hotel or about 500 feet away on Washington Street.

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FHN Financial to Relocate Headquarters to 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road

September 16, 2021

Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees. FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second […]

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FHN Financial to Relocate Headquarters to 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road

Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees.

FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second and third floors of Boyle’s 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road.  “It’s a fresh new space in a very desirable part of the city.  It’s also important to our employees, and we want to build something that works well for them, that they’re excited about,” said Rick Bollinger, EVP with FHN Financial. The new headquarters will occupy two floors encompassing a combined 50,000 square feet.

Both the second and third floors of 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road will be redone and modified to fit the needs of FHN Financial.  The office will have a large, open sales and trading floor.  The renovations to the space are expected to be completed by April 2022.  ANF Architects has been selected as the architect for the build-out of the two floors.

FHN Financial plays a pivotal role for First Horizon.  An institutional business, its clients include banks, insurance companies, cities, counties, states and investment managers.  The organization works with 50% of domestic banks that have an investment portfolio of more than $100 million.

The 275 local employees make up more than half of its overall workforce, as the business has about 500 total employees, spread throughout 26 offices across the country.


 Directions


ABOUT THE DEVELOPMENT

1000 Ridgeway Loop Road

Positioned within Boyle Investment Company’s Ridgeway Center mixed-use development, 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road is a 155,000 square feet office building. Constructed with column-free spaces, this “Class A” building provides efficiencies for tenant use. Currently home to tenants such as Landmark Community Bank and Evans Petree, P.C., this building utilizes stately exterior architecture combined with high-quality interior design to provide premier office space to potential tenants. Security features such as 24/7 security patrol and card access entry points have established 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road as a fully secure, multi-tenant flagship building located in Boyle’s prime central business district.


Property Details

Address: 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road, Memphis, TN
Property Types: Office
Total Square Feet: 155,000
Floors: 6

Recent News

Development in Collierville: What’s Next for Three of the Town’s Biggest Projects?

October 25, 2021

The Commercial Appeal By Dima Amro Town Is Seeing Growth from New Developments Collierville developments continue to make progress this year, despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The Collierville Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved multiple projects in the last 10 months. Now, more companies, dwellings and attractions are headed to the town. Here is a look at […]

FHN Financial to Relocate Headquarters to 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road

September 16, 2021

Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees. FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second […]

Newly Renovated Williamsburg Village Features New Restaurants & Shops

September 15, 2021

Boyle’s renovation of the west side of Williamsburg Village in East Memphis has proven to be extremely popular with patrons enjoying the new restaurants and shops.  The renovation includes the area from the railroad south, and the reconstruction involved the demolition of the two southernmost buildings.  Constructed in their place is a 9,000-square-foot multi-tenant building […]

Newly Renovated Williamsburg Village Features New Restaurants & Shops

Boyle’s renovation of the west side of Williamsburg Village in East Memphis has proven to be extremely popular with patrons enjoying the new restaurants and shops.  The renovation includes the area from the railroad south, and the reconstruction involved the demolition of the two southernmost buildings.  Constructed in their place is a 9,000-square-foot multi-tenant building in which all facades maintain the traditional Williamsburg style of architecture.  New roofs, windows, sidewalks, landscaping and parking lot are breathing new life into the center and have made it like new.  New tenants include Southall Café, Torchy’s Tacos, Henhouse Wine Bar, Crumbl Cookies, Greys Fine Cheeses, Mrs. Post, Shelby Jewel and London & York.  Longstanding tenant Benjamin Moore Paints is still as popular as ever.  Boyle leasing agent, Jonathan Aur, reports that traffic at the center has been tremendous, so stop by today and enjoy new retail and dining experiences unique to the greater Memphis area.


Directions


ABOUT THE DEVELOPMENT

Williamsburg Village Shopping Center

The renovation and reconstruction of Williamsburg Village Shopping Center is complete. Boyle renovated the area from the railroad south, demolished the two southernmost buildings and constructed in their place a 9,000-square-foot multi-tenant building. All facades maintain the traditional Williamsburg style of architecture. New roofs, windows, sidewalks, landscaping and parking lot are breathing new life into the center and have made it like new.  An exciting mix of restaurants and retail includes Torchy’s Tacos, Henhouse Wine Bar, Southall Cafe, Crumbl Cookies, Greys Cheese Shop, Mrs. Post, London & York, Shelby Jewel, and Benjamin Moore Paints.   A wood privacy fence has been constructed at the rear of the property on the property line. Boyle is excited about this project. Contact Joel Fulmer at (901) 766-4206 or Jonathan Aur at (901) 766-4216 at Boyle for more information.


Property Details

Address: 730 South Mendenhall Road, Memphis, TN
Property Types: Retail
Transaction Types: Lease
Major Tenants: The Hen House Wine Bar, Southall Café, Mrs. Post, Crumbl Cookies, Torchy’s Tacos, Guses Fried Chicken, Shelby Jewel, Greys Cheese Shop


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Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees. FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second […]

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Boyle’s renovation of the west side of Williamsburg Village in East Memphis has proven to be extremely popular with patrons enjoying the new restaurants and shops.  The renovation includes the area from the railroad south, and the reconstruction involved the demolition of the two southernmost buildings.  Constructed in their place is a 9,000-square-foot multi-tenant building […]

First Phase of Water Tower District at Schilling Farms Receives Final Approval

The Daily Memphian

By Abigail Warren

The Collierville Board of Mayor and Aldermen has approved the first phase of the Water Tower District that includes 259 new apartments at Schilling Farms.

The board on Monday night endorsed the final development plan for the mixed-use project with retail components to go with the apartments. There was no discussion before the 5-1 vote in favor of the plan, Alderman Billy Patton casting the opposing vote.

Schilling Farms’ outline plan was initially approved in 1991, but amended in 2009 to allow for mixed-uses within buildings providing flexibility while creating pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods.

Schilling Farms has 1,180 apartments on site south of Poplar and west of Byhalia Road. The 2009 outline plan allows a maximum 1,725 multifamily units within the 443-acre property. If the board denied the project Monday, the decision could have resulted in legal fees, due to previous approvals a dozen years ago.

The proposal Monday for 16 acres also didn’t change substantially from a preliminary plan the mayor and aldermen approved in December.

The plan for the first phase includes 110 one-bedroom units, 95 two-bedroom apartments, and 54 three-bedroom residences. Based on previous approvals, developers have rights for an additional 286 apartments inside the Water Tower District in a later phase. Developers plan varying styles of rental units including duplexes, triplexes and town homes.

“I think it’s going to be a very special community, very walkable and organized,” Rusty Bloodworth, Boyle’s executive vice president, said.

In 53 years of development, he said the project took between two and three times more thought than anything else in his career.

The neighborhood will be centered around an old-fashioned water tower similar to one on the site when it was a working farm decades ago.

“Schilling Farms is the premier mixed-used development in West Tennessee and the Mid-South region,” John Duncan, Collierville’s director of economic development, said. “The Water Tower District continues Boyle’s thoughtful elevation of the property.”

The leasing office and amenities for residents are planned for the center of the development in the phase. There is also some retail space in the first phase.

No residents spoke at the Collierville meeting regarding the project, but a common concern attached to development is traffic. An analysis by Kimley-Horn said traffic impacts should be minimal. Engineers suggested retiming the traffic signals on Poplar Avenue at Shea Road and Poplar Avenue at Schilling Boulevard West in a future phase. Last month, the board also approved an agreement for an eastbound right turn lane at Poplar Avenue and Schilling Boulevard West.

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Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees. FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second […]

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Kathy Pampuro Named to Women Who Lead by Memphis Business Journal

Women Who Lead/Commercial Real Estate/Memphis Business Journal Special Section

If there ever was a time for leadership, 2020 was the year.  And, commercial real estate was certainly negatively impacted by COVID, as many workers moved into work-from-home space.  For Memphis Business Journal’s next group of Women Who Lead, honoring executives in commercial real estate (CRE) seemed to be a logical choice.  Also logical is highlighting the accomplishments of women who have broken through the glass ceiling and helped define their businesses, as well as the local marketplace.  Each woman chosen by MBJ’s editorial team has qualities that define leadership – from pushing through challenges to moving a business forward to career-altering decision-making.  Within commercial real estate, the ten Women Who Lead honorees are leaders at some of Memphis’ highest profile real estate firms, from national CRE brands to locally owned firms.  The honorees in CRE have closed millions of dollars and square feet in deals, placed countless tenants in space, and continually provide the real estate structure that makes the local economy grow.

Kathy Pampuro, Senior Vice President, Boyle Investment Company

Kathy Pampuro has had a three-decade career with Boyle Investment Company and has been involved in innumerable office deals for one of the metro’s largest office real estate landlords. Since her start with the firm in the 1980s, the firm has tripled the amount of office space developed, owned and managed in Memphis, giving Pampuro no shortage of real estate tasks.  Her next professional goal is something of a vendetta against vacant square footage on Boyle’s occupancy report.  She has the lofty goal of 100% occupancy for all of Boyle’s office properties.  But, a goal more easily achieved involves her connection with tenants.  “It is gratifying seeing a space transformation and how excited our tenants are about their new office or even a refurbishment or space modification for a tenant renewal,” Pampuro said.

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FHN Financial to Relocate Headquarters to 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road

September 16, 2021

Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees. FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second […]

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Boyle’s renovation of the west side of Williamsburg Village in East Memphis has proven to be extremely popular with patrons enjoying the new restaurants and shops.  The renovation includes the area from the railroad south, and the reconstruction involved the demolition of the two southernmost buildings.  Constructed in their place is a 9,000-square-foot multi-tenant building […]

FHN Finacial Set to Relocate HQ, 275 Employees to East Memphis

Memphis Business journal

By John Klyce

For almost 40 years, FHN Financial — the capital markets division of First Horizon Corp. – has been housed at 845 Crossover lane.  But in May 2022, the business will move its headquarters – and take its roughly 275 local employees with it.

FHN Financial has signed a lease for two floors at the Boyle Investment Company-owned 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road.  “It’s a fresh new space in a very desirable part of the city.  It’s also important to our employees, and we want to build something that works well for them, that they’re excited about,” said Rick Bollinger, EVP with FHN Financial.

The office at Crossover Lane spans 78,000 square feet, but according to Bollinger, the business isn’t currently using the entire space.  The new headquarters will have a smaller footprint, with the two floors encompassing a combined 50,000 square feet.

Both floors will be redone and modified to fit the needs of FHN Financial.  For example, the office will have a large, open sales and trading floor.  Refitting the space to reflect social distancing and pandemic-safety suggestions, however, isn’t top of mind.  While FHN Financial has made adjustments in current spaces, May 2022 is still almost a year away, and by then, the company expects the health situation to be different.

The renovations to the space are expected to be completed by April 2022.  ANF Architects has been selected as the architect for the build-out of the two floors – which, according to a document filed with the Shelby county Register of Deeds, are the second and third floors of the building.

FHN Financial plays a pivotal role for First Horizon.  An institutional business, its clients include banks, insurance companies, cities, counties, states and investment managers.  The organization works with 50% of domestic banks that have an investment portfolio of more than $100 million.

The 275 local employees make up more than half of its overall workforce, as the business has about 500 total employees, spread throughout 26 offices across the country.

 

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FHN Financial to Relocate Headquarters to 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road

September 16, 2021

Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees. FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second […]

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Best Real Estate Deals/Memphis Business Journal

MEMPHIS BUSINESS JOURNAL’s BEST REAL ESTATE DEALS/EAST MEMPHIS

Boyle’s Highwoods Purchase

Locations:  International Place II, Triad Centres I, II and III

Date of the Deal:  Transaction closed March 2020

Dealmakers:  Boyle Investment Company; Highwoods Properties

Highwoods Properties completed in March 2020 its sale of four East Memphis office buildings that total 599,000 square feet.  MBJ first reported in January that Highwoods was in advanced negotiations to sell International Place II and Triad Centres I, II and II to Boyle Investment Company.  One source with knowledge of the deal confirmed at the time that Boyle was the final buyer.  The buildings include a total of $82 million worth of appraised value, according to the Shelby County Assessor of Property.  The Triad buildings give Boyle a virtual monopoly on Class A office space near Poplar Avenue’s intersection with Ridgeway Loop Road – the premier office neighborhood in Memphis.  The Crescent Center, which Highwoods is also trying to sell, is the only significant exception.  International Place II is located at 6410 Poplar Avenue, and Triad Centres I, II and III are located at 6000, 6060 and 6070 Poplar Avenue.  In August 2019, Highwoods announced it planned to sell all of its Memphis assets.  The case from the sales is helping finance the firm’s $436 million purchase of the new Bank of American Tower in Charlotte.  Highwoods had previously sold International place IV and Atrium I and II.  Los Angeles-based CIM Group bought the International Place building, and a group of investors from Nashville and Memphis bought the Atrium buildings.  While International Place I, III and IV are occupied by International Paper, the 210,000-square-foot International place II is a multi-tenant building, home to companies including Jernigan Capital and Martin, Tate, Morrow & Marston.

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Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees. FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second […]

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Memphis Business Journal’s Power 100: Mark Halperin 2021

Mark Halperin, EVP/COO, Boyle Investment Company Named to Memphis Business Journal’s Power 100

Mark Halperin is not often in front of the media, but he can get its attention whenever he wants it. In 2018, Halperin helped land East Memphis a TIF district, despite it reportedly being opposed by some political heavyweights. He was crucial to ServiceMaster’s headquarters relocation to the former Peabody Place Downtown. And, in his primary job at Boyle Investment Co., Halperin leads one of the city’s most powerful real estate firms. In 2020, the company bought four East Memphis office buildings from Highwoods Properties, giving it a near monopoly on Class A space in the city’s premier office district.

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September 16, 2021

Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees. FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second […]

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Boyle’s renovation of the west side of Williamsburg Village in East Memphis has proven to be extremely popular with patrons enjoying the new restaurants and shops.  The renovation includes the area from the railroad south, and the reconstruction involved the demolition of the two southernmost buildings.  Constructed in their place is a 9,000-square-foot multi-tenant building […]

Online retailer, Shelby Jewel, to open in Williamsburg Village

The Memphis Business Journal

By Susan Ellis

Clothing store Shelby Jewel, which has a pop-up shop at Saddle Creek, will open a store in the newish shopping center Williamsburg Village in East Memphis this spring.

Owner Shelby Tucker said that clothing is her way of expressing her creative side.

“I’m not a painter or a drawer, so this is my art,” she said.

Shelby Jewel began as an online store, when she was given the opportunity to open in Saddle Creek.

“It’s crazy, because most people had to go from brick and mortar to online. And for me, I went from online to brick and mortar,” Tucker said. “I really wanted to create my shopping experience in person. That’s where Saddle Creek came in. It provided me an opportunity to figure out if it’s what my customers wanted.”

Turns out, they did. Tucker called customer response “amazing.”

The Williamsburg Village deal came about because Jonathan Aur‘s wife was a customer of Shelby Jewel. Aur works with Boyle Investment Co., which oversees Williamsburg Village.

Williamsburg Village, on Mendenhall near Poplar, has a number of stores and restaurants already open or in the works, including Mrs. Post Stationary, Southall Cafe, Crumbl Cookies, and Torchy’s Tacos.

Tucker was particularly enthused by the new spot because many of the businesses are woman-owned.

The new site is just over 2,500 square feet and she’s already leased the adjoining space so that she can offer new brands of clothes that are not currently available in Memphis.

The store will employ six people.

Tucker said that Shelby Jewel is the sort of place where folks can take a load off. When they enter, they are offered a drink — coffee or Prosecco. The goal is to offer affordable, easy classic styles for women of all ages.

What she’s bought recently has changed due to the pandemic.

“When the pandemic hit, I started seeing that people are working from home. I definitely had to adjust, but it was still things that I would have picked anyway,” Tucker said. “I want people to feel like they are put together but feel extremely comfortable. When it came to that, I picked things that were soft and flow-y, but when you’re on a Zoom call, you look like you got it together.”

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FHN Financial to Relocate Headquarters to 1000 Ridgeway Loop Road

September 16, 2021

Boyle is excited that FHN Financial has selected Boyle’s Ridgeway Center community at Poplar Avenue and I-240 in East Memphis as the new location for its headquarters.  The company plans to take occupancy of its new space in May 2022 and will relocate 275 local employees. FHN Financial has signed a lease for the second […]

Newly Renovated Williamsburg Village Features New Restaurants & Shops

September 15, 2021

Boyle’s renovation of the west side of Williamsburg Village in East Memphis has proven to be extremely popular with patrons enjoying the new restaurants and shops.  The renovation includes the area from the railroad south, and the reconstruction involved the demolition of the two southernmost buildings.  Constructed in their place is a 9,000-square-foot multi-tenant building […]

Schilling Farms Water Tower District: Here’s a Look at the First Phase Plans and Timeline

The Commercial Appeal

Construction could begin this year on residential and retail buildings at the Schilling Farms Water Tower District in Collierville.

On Dec. 14, the Collierville Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved a preliminary site plan for 257 residential units in the northwest corner of Schilling Farms. Now Boyle Investment Co., the project’s developer, is preparing the final plans.

“We hope we’ll have the residential and retail component under construction in 2021,” said Les Binkley, vice president of Boyle Investment.

The first phase of the Schilling Farms Water Tower District in Collierville includes townhomes, apartment buildings and duplexes. The property is pictured on Friday, Jan. 8, 2021.

The first phase includes 28 buildings for the residential side of the 50-acre Water Tower District, which will include rental properties — 32 townhomes, seven three-story apartment buildings and duplexes. The residential side is located along Schilling Boulevard West between Poplar Avenue and Winchester Boulevard.

“We’ve done a pretty terrific job, I think, of mixing up the building types inside the neighborhood,” Binkley said. “It’s pretty special for a suburban project like this because we have so many different building types with elevator-served buildings, which is rare.”

In addition to elevators, Binkley pointed out the development will include private direct-access garages for some. He also said the community will have a walkable component not commonly seen around Collierville.

Along with residential areas, the first phase contains 40,000 square feet of retail space, 50,000 square feet of office space and the corporate headquarters for IMC Companies, an intermodal logistics provider, which is already under construction.

Work is underway on IMC Companies' corporate headquarters in the Schilling Farms Water Tower District on Friday, Jan. 8, 2021.

“I think as far as the retail component, we’re trying to add services to this section of Collierville and this area of Schilling Farms to have more services for corporate office tenants,” Binkley said. “That’s one big thing we try to do.”

Binkley said the phase one construction would last around two years.

Phase two plans, which Boyle has not submitted yet, will include more space for office and apartment buildings and a hotel or two if the market allows.

We have the zoning for it, and we would love to sell a site to a hotel company,” Binkley said. “Just obviously with the COVID pandemic and the stress on hotels we’re not really sure when or if that would occur.”

Binkley expects the market will embrace a development like the Water Tower District because of the walkability, elevator-served buildings and direct-access garages.

“Our project is laid out in a really urban walkable fashion, so all the buildings are pulled up close to the street, they all have front porches and there’s parallel on-street parking,” Binkley said. “It’s a very pleasant, non-typical suburban type of arrangement, and we’re excited for the next phase.”

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Collierville Approves Multifamily Units in First Phase of Water Tower District

The Daily Memphian

Collierville’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved a preliminary site plan that includes duplexes, triplexes and townhomes at Schilling Farms.

The proposal was approved in a 5-1 vote. Alderman Billy Patton cast the lone vote of opposition, saying he wanted to see more retail or office space.

Boyle Investment Company’s newest component to its mixed-use development, easily seen from Poplar Avenue and Winchester Boulevard, includes 257 units in the first phase of the Water Tower District.

The Planning Commission recommended approval of the proposal in August.

“Schilling Farms is the premier mixed-used development in West Tennessee and the Mid-South region,” John Duncan, Collierville’s director of economic development, said. “The Water Tower District continues Boyle’s thoughtful elevation of the property.”

Schilling Farms’ outline plan was approved in 1991, but amended in 2009 to help allow for mixed-uses within buildings and to help create pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods.

The previously approved outline plan allows up to 1,725 units within the mixed-use development. If the board denied the proposal, they could face legal fees, as Monday’s proposal was in line with the outline plan.

Schilling Farms already has 1,180 multifamily units. With Monday’s approval, an additional 288 could be approved in the future for the mixed-use development.

The Water Tower District won’t contain only multifamily residential units. The project will be completed in two phases. In addition to apartments, the first phase includes 50,000 square feet of office space and 40,000 square feet of retail. Completion of phase one is estimated by the end of 2021.

Patton said he understood the property owners had vested rights, but he would like to see more retail or office space. After the meeting, he noted the developers want the multi-family units to benefit profit, but did not want it “become a problem for the town of Collierville.” He noted multi-family units can put strain on the town’s schools and services, like police and fire.

The second phase will look for approval at a later date, but Boyle officials are hopeful to submit the request in 2021. The company will request about 200 more apartments, two hotels with 100 rooms each and another 150,000 square feet of office space. The developers expect it to be completed in 2028 if it can gain the necessary approvals.

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Texas Comes to Tennessee: Torchy’s Tacos Headed for East Memphis

The Daily Memphian

By Jennifer Biggs

Some “damn good” tacos are coming to Memphis. If you’ve spent much time in Texas, particularly in the Austin area, you know what that means: Torchy’s is on the way. Your Trailer Park taco is coming and you can get it cheesy when you get it trashy.

“Damn Good” is the bold motto that the company calls a mantra, keeping with its fun and funky, “keep Austin weird” food-truck roots. Torchy’s started as one small truck on South First in Austin and founder Mike Rypka’s marketing campaign was handing out food around town on his red Vespa.

It’s grown to more than 80 locations since 2006, expanding first through Texas then in 2016, outside the state to Colorado, Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas, Missouri and Louisiana.

Next stop, 711 S. Mendenhall in Williamsburg Village Shopping Center, coming late spring or early summer 2021.

Matthew Miller, who spent 16 years with Bonefish and a couple with Hopdoddy at Poplar and Perkins, joined Torchy’s as the managing partner for Memphis in January. The plan was to have a location open here around July, but COVID delayed it.

The silver lining is that the space on South Mendenhall became available while they were waiting. The Boyle project is quickly turning the block on Mendenhall just south of the railroad tracks at Poplar into a foodie haven. Southall Café opened in September, and soon Greys cheese shop will, to be followed later by the Hen House Memphis wine bar. All are on the west side of the street with Torchy’s site.

Across the street, Magnolia & May recently opened, joining longtimers The Half Shell, Gus’s Fried Chicken, Gibson’s Donuts and Garibaldi’s Pizza, relatively new to the block.

Miller, who has been working at the Baton Rouge Torchy’s location for several months, said Torchy’s Memphis will have 76 indoor table seats, 20 at the bar and 22 outside. A drive-thru is possible, though not a certainty.

“We don’t really have any parking room here (in Baton Rouge), so we use a text system,” he said. “People text when they get here, go to the pick-up lane and we take their order out to them. We might do that in Memphis, too.”

Scott Hudler, Torchy’s chief marketing officer, said that Rypka and his original partners sold a minority interest in the company to growth equity firm General Atlantic in 2017, but maintain the majority interest and creative control.

“Mike was a classically trained chef before he started Torchy’s,” Hudler said. “His idea was to elevate the street taco, but the food trailer was just in a terrible location.

“So he’d literally go to stoplights and hand out food to people in their cars and they would say ‘Man, that’s damn good.’ That just grew to kind of become a rallying call in the organization, and now it’s our mission statement: Be damn good. That’s everything, from the people we hire to the locations to the bar to, of course, the food.”

It’s not really Mexican food and it’s not really Tex-Mex. The tacos are fun and filling. Appropriate for today but around for years, there’s the Democrat, made with barbacoa and avocado on a corn tortilla, and the Republican, with grilled jalapeno sausage and cheese on a flour tortilla.

A best seller is the Trailer Park, with fried chicken, green chiles, pico de gallo, lettuce, cheddar-jack cheese and poblano sauce. ‘Get it trashy’ means hold the lettuce and add green chile queso, the quintessential Torchy’s menu item.

“It’s incredibly addictive. It’s our signature dish with a recipe that is closely guarded. They won’t even tell me what’s in it,” Hudler said. “You can add diablo sauce, you can get it hillbilly style (adding chorizo), so you get to customize it. Sitting down with a group of family or friends and our green chile queso is part of the experience.”

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