economic development





Town Building & Codes

Crew Keeps Eye on

High School Construction

Traffic Signal at Collierville/

Arlington and Poplar Gets

Green Light for Construction

Linda Kerley Center

To Open in the Fall

TDOT Discovered Much

More During Wolf River

Bridge Closure

Town Receives $2 Million

Grant For Neighborhood

Drainage Work

Relocating to Collierville

Brings Positive Impact to

Local Economy

Real Estate Agents Gain

Inside Development

Scoop on Bus Tour

Mueller Industries

Breaking Ground

In Collierville

5/4/17 - Three monster-sized books of construction plans sit upon desks in the back offices of the Town of Collierville’s Codes Department. They hold all the details of what will be the 450,000-square-foot new Collierville High School. Four hundred and fifty thousand square feet equals 10.3 acres. That’s a lot of school and a lot of details to be handled during the construction process.

Chris Byrd of Collierville’s Building and Codes Division is in charge of inspecting the construction, and at this point, that means receiving daily progress reports from third party inspectors. “There are a lot of outside contractors installing their preliminary work,” said Byrd. “The building contractor has someone on site at all times to monitor what’s going on and if it is being done correctly.”

“All schools are regulated by the state,” said Byrd, “but because the Town has a financial investment in this project, our Codes department acts as ‘third set of eyes’ to make sure the Town gets its money’s worth and to ensure safety on the project.” Byrd said that the Codes staff consists of one primary inspector for each of the mechanical, plumbing and electrical trades. Each one of them has been performing inspections at the school in addition to their other workload.

David Stewart is a Mechanical/Building Inspector for the Town. One of his jobs at the school construction site is to inspect the heating and air conditioning units throughout the buildings as they are being installed by the HVAC contractor. He checks the fire dampers – the mechanisms that prevent fire spreading through the ductwork from one floor to another, and he points out the extensive nature of the building’s HVAC system.

“There are units bringing fresh air into the classrooms, but there are also units in the corridors that do nothing but bring conditioned fresh air into the entire building,” said Stewart. Stewart said the double level of comfort is part of the Town’s plan for an optimal learning environment for the students who will be attending classes here. All of Collierville’s construction code inspectors are certified in their specific trade by the International Code Council. They perform thousands of inspections each year ensuring structural integrity, fire safety, sanitation, disabled access and energy efficiency of new and existing buildings throughout the community.
7/19/17 - Within the next few weeks the early stages of construction will begin towards the installation of a traffic signal at Collierville/Arlington and Poplar. People who travel east to west along Poplar from SR385 towards the center of Town have been awaiting this moment. The first signs of construction of the new signal will begin in the next few weeks when crews make improvements to the driveways/aprons of the businesses at that intersection. This will be followed by installation of steel poles at the corners of the intersection that will anchor the spans of wire that will power the traffic signal and hold it in place.

This traffic signal is being completely funded by a $420,000 Federal Congestion, Mitigation and Air Quality Grant administered by Shelby County. The improvements to the driveway/aprons and installation of the steel poles and signal will be performed by Shelby County crews and contractors. The signal is projected to be installed and operational by January 2018.

With the opening of I-269/SR385 there has been a significant increase of traffic flowing into Collierville from the east. Poplar/SR57 being a major east-west roadway through Collierville has certainly felt the busy demand. A recent traffic study conducted by The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) indicated that over 13,400 vehicles per day travel from Poplar at SR385 west to downtown Collierville.

The increase in traffic volume can be attributed to Collierville’s growth and desirability as a destination for shopping and restaurants and opening SR385 has made Collierville accessible to the region. The Town is well aware of the increased traffic volume along Poplar and is taking steps to manage traffic flow.

This new traffic signal at Collierville/Arlington and Poplar combined with the newly operating signal at Poplar and Grand Steeple will reduce congestion and provide a safer more efficient management for traffic volume along the Poplar corridor.
7/21/17 - Progress is well underway at what will soon be the Linda Kerley Senior Center. The Quonset style building at 176 College Street previously housed the College Street Recreation Center. The gym inside the center will stay as is, says Collierville General Service Director Derek Honeycutt, but the front of the building is being renovated to serve the senior population in Collierville.

The senior activities already in place at the Community Center on Powell Road will be moved to the large open area in the front of the new Linda Kerley Center. Those include a chair exercise class; a stretch-balance-breath program; bingo twice a month; a bridge group and various educational programs. New programs will be added once the center is opened. “Planning is in progress for a variety of educational programs, informational speakers, additional exercise classes and health programs, and social interaction programs,” said Lisa Gaither, Recreation Program Coordinator in the Town of Collierville Parks Department.

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved a resolution to rename the Center after former Mayor Linda Kerley last year. Kerley was Collierville’s first female Alderman and first female Mayor, and she had a passion for providing seniors in the community with opportunities for social interaction and intellectual stimulation, as well as meeting their basic needs through programs like Meals on Wheels. Kerley passed away with cancer in 2013.

The Linda Kerley Senior Center will open in October.

7/28/17 - Many Collierville-Arlington commuters experienced a slight bump in their travels during the week of July 10, 2017. The road was completely shut down at the Wolf River Bridge for extensive repairs. During a previous TDOT inspection, crews discovered that 12 concrete slabs, making up the top portion of the bridge’s structure, were deficient and need to be replaced. However, once TDOT started the repairs, they discovered that even more slabs were in need of repair.

“Frequently when we perform this work, slabs are located in an area that makes it possible for us to replace them by closing one of the lanes,” said Nichole Lawrence, TDOT Community Relations. “Since many of these slabs were located in the center of the road, we needed to consider closing the road to make the repairs.” After meeting with both the Town of Collierville and Shelby County, it was collectively decided to initiate a short term closure so that TDOT’s Bridge Repair Division could replace those slabs safely and quickly.

Once TDOT removed some of the concrete slabs, they discovered that other slabs were in a condition that would soon require repair or replacement. TDOT quickly diverted additional crews to the project so they could keep the project on schedule and reopen the road on time. In the 5 day bridge closure, crews replaced a total of 40 out of the 45 concrete slabs that make up the bridge deck.

Other repairs and improvements were made during the closure, including the bridge rail and guardrail. TDOT completed repaving the road the following week of July 17, 2017. The Wolf River Bridge was constructed in 1959 and is 85 feet long. The bridge’s primary function is to serve as an overflow area for the Wolf River and surrounding land.

“We have started developing a project to replace both the overflow and Wolf River Bridge. This replacement will take some time to plan and design, until that time TDOT will continue to keep both of these structures safe and operational,” commented Lawrence.
9/5/17 - The Town of Collierville will soon be able to start work on some street drainage improvement projects due to receiving a $2, 215, 743.00 grant from the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development.

The grant is part of leftover monies from the 2011 Disaster Relief Fund that was given to Shelby County after severe flooding. This is the third and final round of money from the fund.

“We’ll be working in Alcorn Village, Harris Estates and in the Friendship Cove, where we’ve recently had some flooding,” said Dale Perryman, Town Engineer for Collierville. “Also, we’ll be working on Phase 2 of a downtown drainage project which will extend from Sycamore Road to Center Street We’re going to improve the stream there to help with drainage in downtown, and hopefully open it up for more development.”

The money comes to Collierville through the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. Block grants fund a wide range of community projects and are usually administered by state and local governments, unlike categorical grants, which are given for more specific purposes.

The Town of Collierville has 18 months to use the grant money. The environmental work that precedes the design work has already begun. Environmental work includes checking for flood zones and endangered species. This can take from 60 to 90 days to complete.

Orgilll Inc.=

380 Employees

$21 Million Investment

11/9/17 - In October of 2015, Orgill Inc, a company with a long history in Memphis, announced plans to build a new world headquarters in Collierville. The $21 million investment in our community broke ground in the summer of 2016 on the east side of Houston Levee Road between Winchester and Bailey Station Road. Orgill planned to be up and running in the new location during the fourth quarter of 2017 - and they are right on schedule. 265 Orgill employees will be moving into 92,000 square foot headquarters in December. The new location will also accommodate 115 new jobs, with salaries averaging $65,000, in addition to the 265 current employees, who have a median income of $81,000.

Founded in Memphis in 1847, Orgill distributes hardware and home improvement products to customers in all 50 states, 10 Canadian provinces, and over 50 countries internationally. They have 7 distribution centers throughout the United States and 3 export consolidation facilities shipping hardware supplies. Orgill also offers branding, marketing, retail and sales services to their customers.

The economic influence of Orgill starting their operation in Collierville is invaluable. With a well-developed road and sewer infrastructure already in place, the Town is minimally impacted by adding the Orgill facility. Once Orgill begins operations next month, the local economy will see a boost. Collierville’s vast array of restaurants will be the beneficiary of employees’ lunch destinations and local shops will more than likely see an influx in activity visiting during lunch hours and after work. Some Orgill employees may decide to move to Collierville, which will have an additional positive impact on the local real estate market. Elizabeth Burr Wilson, realtor with Crye-Leike, welcomes this kind of “smart growth” to the Collierville community.

“We have the right leadership within the Town to facilitate smart growth in Collierville,” said Wilson. “I enjoy seeing new office buildings in Town, because I know what they will bring. These corporate executives want high-end homes, support local restaurants, and send their kids to an amazing school system.” This type of economic growth has a low impact on the environment and the framework of the Town. Having these high paying jobs in the community – such as the Orgill employees – stimulates the type of activity any city wants, plans to attract, and eagerly welcomes.

“This is the present and future of Collierville,” said James Taras, Managing Partner of Jim’s Place Grille, another business rooted in Memphis history. Located minutes down the street from Orgill’s headquarters, Taras shared that Orgill is already an integral part of their business. “Whether it is 2 or 30 people, we appreciate their support as a go-to spot for dining in this neighborhood. We also hope that Orgill will spearhead economic growth in the area; we invested in the community 11 years ago, and look forward to seeing more successful companies like Orgill joining us.” In addition to providing a daytime economic stimulus to the Town, these employees will join other local corporate entities giving back to the community they call home. They provide corporate sponsorships for nonprofits and participate in local service projects. Attracting and welcoming corporate partners like Orgill will help to continue to solidify the Town’s brand as a regional center for America’s best corporations to grow their bus
The wheels on the Double Decker Bus went ‘round the Town on Friday, November 3rd as Town Planner Jaime Groce spoke to the passengers about current and future historic district development plans. Almost at full capacity, the bus was loaded with local real estate professionals who got a behind the scenes look at the changing blueprint of downtown Collierville.

“Realtors want to be able to tell their clients what exactly is going on around Town,” said Jaime. “We gave them exclusive insights into future developments, as well as highlighted the positive community impact for current locations such as the Morton Museum and newly opened Linda Kerley Center.” The two-hour bus tour incorporated multiple stops around the historic district; seven of the stops had guest speakers board the bus to talk about a specific location. Guest speakers included: Lori Jean Spencer, University of Memphis Collierville Center, Brooke Mundy, Morton Museum, Frank Fitzgerald, Homewood Place Subdivision, Allen Green, Washington Street nonresidential development, Sandy and John Barrios, Bazaar, Watty Brooks Hall, Brooks Pharm to Fork, and Shelia Moody, The Quonset.

“The Barrios talked about why they chose to move from Carriage Crossing to the Square, Sheila Moody shared the importance of having a unique event venue in the area, and Watty Brooks talked about the renovation process of Pharm to Fork,” said Jaime. “The subtext of it all was that a lot of people are working together, from the Town to business owners, to make Collierville what it is – this didn’t just happen.”

This event was organized by Main Street Collierville and sponsored by State Farm Agent Preston Carpenter and Dee Dee Reed Mizzell of EDCO Title and Closing Services Inc. Following the Double Decker Bus Tour, the participants had lunch at 148 North.

“These are the people selling Collierville, and we wanted to provide our real estate agents an opportunity to learn more about development in the historic district” said Amanda Harris, Main Street Collierville Director. “Hearing Jaime’s presentation helped bridge the gap between what is happening and what will be happening near Town Square.” Harris said the event was well-attended and feedback after the tour was very positive; Main Street is hoping to have a similar event in the spring of 2018.

Mueller Industries =

125 Employees

$15 Million Investment

12/7/17 - Mueller Industries, a manufacturer and distributor of industrial products, is celebrating its centennial and making a change. Having been headquartered in Memphis for many years, Mueller is moving to Collierville. The company broke ground on its new office building at Schilling Farms in October, and Collierville Economic Director John Duncan sees the move as the start of a beautiful relationship between the Town and its newest corporate partner.

“They had options,” said Duncan, “but they chose Collierville because of the overall characteristics of the Town: excellent schools, low crime and other amenities.”

Mueller representative Jack Treas said that Collierville rose to the top of the list of potential locations after the company did extensive research into available options. “Mueller vetted several municipalities in western Tennessee and surrounding states, and was favorably impressed with the interest shown by Collierville’s civic leaders,” said Treas. “Town leaders showed us their detailed and controlled growth plan, stressed the new high school building’s role in attracting top talent to the area, and painted a vibrant picture of the future of Collierville. They made us feel part of the community throughout our entire search. Because of this, our two finalist locations were both in Collierville.”

Mueller will move from its current office on Tournament Drive in Memphis to its new 55,000 square foot building near the end of 2018. The construction of the building is expected to bring construction jobs to Collierville before Mueller ever opens its doors, and thereafter, the company will bring over 125 employees, creating a daily increase in business for the Town’s restaurants, gas stations and other retailers. Potentially, some of those employees will choose to live in Collierville, bolstering the economy in several other ways.

Collierville is already home to the corporate offices of FedEx World Technology Center, MCR Safety, Helena Chemical, Juice Plus and Orgill. The addition of Mueller to Collierville’s corporate roster increases chances that other large companies will move their headquarters and regional and district offices to the community, as well as R&D centers, technology and call centers. Additionally, the Mueller project represents an approximately $15 million capital investment in land, real and personal property in the Town of Collierville.