Keeping It Close By

Port of Memphis Master Plan

In November 2017, the Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE) of Memphis and Shelby County approved a $327,500 contract to Pickering Firm to develop a comprehensive Master Plan for the Port of Memphis. This plan will seek to inform future development of the Port of Memphis including facility expansion, property redevelopment, economic impact, environmental analysis and target tenant identification, among other topics.

This master plan will serve as the vision of the Port of Memphis through the year 2031, focusing on needs and opportunities in both the near and long-term future. Specific areas that will be included in the plan are President’s Island, McKellar Lake and the Frank C. Pidgeon Industrial Area.

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Regional Resilience Plan

In January 2016, the federal department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced that Shelby County was the recipient of a $60 million federal grant for its Greenprint for Resilience project, designed to increase its resiliency over the next three years.

The project includes four activities: projects along Big Creek, Wolf River, and South Cypress Creek and a regional resilience plan to model and plan for flood impact and other climate risk across the county and tri-state region. The three place-based activities include scalable solutions to create flood resilience, community redevelopment and connectivity to benefit low- to-moderate-income communities in Memphis and Millington, TN.

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Memphis Aerotropolis

Efforts have been underway since 2006 in the development of the area around the Memphis International Airport as an Aerotropolis. An aerotropolis is a type of urban form that consists of a city or an economic hub that extends out from a large airport into a surrounding area.  This provides the opportunity for the growth and development of distribution centers, office buildings, light manufacturing firms, convention centers, and hotels, all linked to the airport via roads, expressways, and rail lines.

The Memphis Aerotropolis can be described as the airport-integrated urban land form where the impact and development attraction of the airport extends out as far as 25 miles into East Arkansas and North Mississippi and 50 square miles directly around the airport. This is the primary study area, often referred to as Airport City.  

A key component of the aerotropolis strategy for the Memphis region is it's access to all four major modes of transportation, including air, roadway, railway, and the river.  The ultimate goals of the aerotropolis are:

  • Business attraction, retention and job creation
  • Improve connections to airport from business parks, residential areas and downtown
  • Infrastructure improvements and congestion mitigation
  • Increase airport cargo and passenger activity
  • Improve internal and external perceptions of Memphis as a place to live, work, and do business.

Aerotropolis Final Plan