After meeting rigorous requirements, a 42-acre industrial property in Memphis has earned designation as a “shovel-ready” Select Tennessee Certified Site by the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development (TNECD).
Located on Presidents Island and bordered by Harbor Avenue and Channel Avenue on the north and south, and by Buoy Street and the U.S. Navy’s William B. Morgan Large Cavitation Channel research and testing facility on the east and west, the vacant site is currently owned by the Economic Development Growth Engine of Memphis & Shelby County (EDGE). EDGE, the Greater Memphis Chamber, and the Port of Memphis worked together to achieve the certification, which adds the site to the list of properties that TNECD markets to site development consultants and business leaders as ready for development.
“Memphis exemplifies the power of collaboration and strategic planning in creating opportunities for economic growth and innovation,” said Kirby Lewis-Gill, Director of Site Development for TNECD and manager of the Select Tennessee program. “Achieving the Select Tennessee Certified Site designation for The EDGE Property at Presidents Island is a testament to this team’s commitment to building a thriving community with the infrastructure and partnerships needed to attract global investment.”
TNECD launched Select Tennessee in 2012 to elevate the state’s sites to the level of preparedness necessary for corporate investment. The program, which is administered by Austin Consulting, has certified more than 70 sites across the state. The certification is only available to high-quality industrial sites with 20+ acres, documented environmental conditions and geotechnical analysis, existing onsite utilities or a formal plan to extend utilities to the site, and truck-quality road access.
“Partnerships have been a key strategy throughout this journey,” said EDGE VP of Operations Dr. Joann Massey. “Collaboration with the Greater Memphis Chamber, the City of Memphis, and our team at the Port of Memphis has been instrumental – with a particular focus on economic development initiatives and driving positive change within our community.”
The site, known as The EDGE Property at Presidents Island, is strategically located, with easy access to the 4 “Rs” — river, rail, runway, and road. The property is adjacent to the CN railway, with established agreements for switching between BNSF and Union Pacific railroads; has easy access to the Port of Memphis, the fifth largest inland port in the nation; is approximately five miles from Interstate 55; and is 15 miles from Memphis International Airport, the second busiest cargo airport in the world.
“The port alone contributes a substantial $6.2 billion economic impact, highlighting the advantage of this land being the last undeveloped site of its magnitude on Presidents Island,” said Memphis & Shelby County Port Commission Executive Director Randy Richardson.
Memphis also boasts the highest concentration of Black advanced manufacturing professionals of any major metro in the nation at 44% of its workforce, compared to a national average of 10%, according to the Greater Memphis Economic Research Group at the Greater Memphis Chamber.
“Earning this highly sought-after certification signals to the world that Memphis is ready for investment,” said Ted Townsend, President & CEO of the Greater Memphis Chamber. “Not only are we the nation’s logistics leader, but we also have the shovel-ready sites, diverse talent, and future-ready infrastructure that give a competitive advantage to our rapidly growing stable of world-class advanced manufacturers. Armed with this designation, we look forward to marketing this site in partnership with TNECD.”