South Main Excited to See Work on Hotel Chisca

South Main Excited to See Work on Hotel Chisca

The $24 million redevelopment of the Hotel Chisca is now Underway, bringing life back into a historic 100-year old building in downtown Memphis. It's been abandoned for more than a decade.
MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - The $24 million redevelopment of the Hotel Chisca is now Underway, bringing life back into a historic 100-year old building in downtown Memphis. It's been abandoned for more than a decade.

Surrounding business owners are thrilled.

"It's going to brighten up and enhance South Main so everybody is excited about this," said Casey Lambert, manager at Pearl's Oyster House. "We can't wait to get this thing off the ground and get the construction going."

"It brings me joy just to see that I'm right in the middle of it. How can I not be happy about it?" added co-owner of Talk of the Town Hair & Nail Salon, Marisa Dawson.

The hotel was built in 1913. The Chisca used to house the radio station that first broadcast Elvis Presley, but it's been vacant for more than a decade. COGIC has owned the building, but for years hasn't done much with it.

Lambert said, "It's a long time coming. It sat empty for 31 years. It's been falling apart and I think that it's been a black eye on us because tourists come down, they get to the Orpheum and they look down South Main and they see that, and they go, 'This must be the bad area of Memphis,' and it's not true. It's not."

Renovations include more than 160 apartments, restaurant space, a pool, a rooftop deck, and more. That will bring the much needed life in the South Main district.

"We are the art district, fabulous things going on," noted Dawson. "Tonight is Trolley Night. Everybody is going to be open late serving wine so y'all need to come back down here!"
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