A PLAN FOR STRATEGIC PROGRESS
One of my heroes is the legendary New Zealand mountaineer, explorer, and philanthropist, Sir Edmund Hillary. In 1953 along with Nepalese Sherpa Tenzig Norgay, Hillary was the first person to successfully reach the summit of Mount Everest, a 29,000 foot ascent, in the midst of challenging conditions. The great motivational speaker Zig Ziglar once said of Hillary, “People do not wander around and then find themselves at the top of Mount Everest.” Hillary had a plan, a strategy, partnerships (362 porters, 20 Sherpas and 10,000 lbs. of baggage), strength of character, motivation, and desire—in short, he had a vision.
Similarly, The Town of Collierville has a strategic, organized, and fully analyzed plan for our future. This roadmap is our guide for our development journey forward. It is our path to the top! Collierville 2040: A Vision for your Hometown, is our development plan and guiding principles for the next 20-25 years, as Collierville potentially becomes a community of 80,000. With over 1,200 acres of land zoned for office, industrial, commercial, and residential developments, it is critically important that we have a thoughtful plan moving forward.
You can find Collierville 2040 at www.collierville.com/departments/development/planning/collierville-2040-vision. Today, I want to explore some of the exciting components of our vision.
First of all, Collierville is the premier community in West Tennessee and is one of the finest towns in the state and region, an accomplishment which has taken years of focus, thought, planning, and partnerships. There are many things which make our community stand out:
- We are one of only four municipalities in Tennessee with a Moody’s Triple A Bond Rating.
- Our new $93,000,000 high school will be Tennessee’s largest and will be a part of a consistently highly-rated school system.
- Movoto Real Estate rates us as the fifth safest city in Tennessee and the third safest when it comes to violent crime (2014).
- The Historic Town Square was voted “Best Main Street in America” by Parade Magazine in 2014.
- We have over 800 acres of parkland with almost 20 miles of Greenbelt trails
It will continue to be our objective to maintain and sustain a community that is desirable for families, businesses, and visitors, and Collierville 2040 supports those aims.
Suburban Commercial – The Poplar Corridor, US-72 and Carriage Crossing
There are close to 400 acres of developable land zoned “Suburban Commercial” in Collierville, with the majority along the Poplar Corridor, on US-72 and in and around Carriage Crossing. The Town requires Suburban Commercial development to have a “nodal” approach, meaning such development must be located near the designated intersections of major roads as to curtail the linear or “strip” development of commercial uses along Town streets. Vehicle and pedestrian connectivity is encouraged between adjacent, non-residential uses. Buffer zones and heavy landscape screening is also required. Walking between complementary uses is encouraged.
- Poplar Corridor: Retail developers and brokers have a strong desire to place their clients along the Poplar Corridor. This corridor offers density, elevated traffic patterns, access, and complimentary businesses. We have already seen some excellent redevelopment along this corridor westward from the Historic District. Panda Express, O’Reilly’s Auto Parts, Collierville Auto Center, Harbor Freight, Southern Security Federal Credit Union, and the Byhalia Crossing retail center are all upgrades to this corridor. The new Discount Tire Store across the street from Wal-Mart is expected to continue this trend of elevated retail development. As we move further west, McDonald’s will be constructing a new, modern restaurant between Taco Bell and Walgreens. Starbucks, with a new drive-through, is moving across the street from their current location, joining Mattress Firm at the Collierville Marketplace retail development. LA Fitness will soon take the old Sunrise Chevrolet space. The Germantown Commissary announced a new restaurant at Poplar and Houston Levee, behind Longhorn Steakhouse. Opportunities for retail expansion and redevelopment along this corridor will continue.
- US-72: A $20,000,000 Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) grant allowed the town to radically improve this vital corridor. US-72, from Poplar SE to SR-385, is now a divided, five-lane highway with improved lighting, landscapes, and drainage. Not only is this key thoroughfare destined to be a competitive logistics corridor, we also anticipate increased commercial activity as well. The Waffle Iron is now open serving breakfast. The Collierville Canine Club, a unique dog boarding spa, will soon be opening along US-72. With the new Collierville High School and I-269 opening 3rd quarter, 2018, traffic and activity is expected to elevate on 72, increasing commercial development opportunities.
- Carriage Crossing: The national retail market has been challenged of late, battling consumer shopping preferences and the changing face of brick-and-mortar retail. Carriage Crossing, our 787,000 square-foot, open-air, regional lifestyle center, has weathered these challenges rather successfully. The restaurants at Carriage Crossing, namely, Carrabba’s, Stix, Frida’s, Hickory Tavern, Firebirds, Bonefish Grill, Milano’s Pizza and Crepe Maker are doing well. Grant & Company, owners of The Courtyard by Marriott, are building a new 110-room hotel, Fairfield Inn & Suites, at the northern end of the center. New tenants Bricks & Minifigs, Jumpin’ Jellybeans and a to-be-named event / reception space, represent the changing dynamics of the retail scene and offer a destination concept, which will bring traffic to the center and be positive news for all retailers and restaurants.
Office / Institutional Campus – Houston Levee Corridor, Schilling Farms, Byhalia & 385 and I-269/SR-385/US-72
Office and institutional campus areas include corporate offices, professional office complexes, hospitals, large-scale places of assembly such as churches, schools, and college campuses with a unified design theme which preserves a maximum amount of open space. These areas are typically located close to major roads and freeways and are separated by surrounding neighborhoods, major roads, or large buffer areas. Buildings are typically set back a distance from adjacent roadways and property boundaries. Pedestrian activity between buildings, homes, and services is encouraged.
- Houston Levee Corridor: This stretch is a convenient location with abundant developable land. The proximity to Carriage Crossing, SR-385, Poplar, and FedEx WTC, makes this area attractive. Orgill is currently building a 92,000 square-foot world headquarters in this corridor, ultimately bringing 385 employees with a median salary of over $80,000 to the area and representing a $25,000,000 investment in Collierville. Additionally, FedEx World Technology Center, with over 2,400 employees and utilizing 1,000,000 square feet of office space, has been in this corridor since the late 90’s.
- Schilling Farms: This Boyle, 443-acre area which is master-planned for mixed-use development, is centrally located, offering a unique live, work, and play environment. JuicePlus, MCR Safety, and Helena Chemical all call Schilling Farms home. Recently, Mueller Industries, a Fortune 1000 manufacturer of copper / aluminum / plastic tubing and flow products, announced plans to relocate their corporate headquarters to Schilling Farms. Mueller will occupy a 52,000 sf building, housing over 125 employees by Winter of 2018. Additionally, the YMCA, Ortho One, and D-I Sports have a presence in this mixed use development. With an abundance of land still available, we anticipate projections for additional office / institutional development.
- Byhalia & SR-385: Access and visibility are the key selling points of this area. Byhalia Road has recently been widened to five lanes, making this active gateway (30,000+ vehicles per day) a hot spot. Once the new high school takes off and the Town puts a traffic signal at Byhalia and Shelby, activity in this zone will spike.
- I-269/SR-385/US 72: Nestled at the crossroads of these three major roads in the southeast part of Town, this office related development is promising. The gateway Global Logistics Center, with the Norfolk Southern Intermodal rail yard and over 3,000,000 square feet of warehouse space, provides the type of environment attractive for development that needs access to these assets.
Technology / Employment Center – The Strategic SE Logistics and Manufacturing Zone
With over 300 acres of developable land zone industrial, the strategic SE zone of Collierville, at the I-269 / SR-385 / US-72 crossroads, provides game-changing access to assets, markets, employees, and clients. Technology / Employment Center areas include research facilities, office / warehouse flex space, fabrication, storage, or processing of goods and materials using processes that ordinarily do not create fumes, glare, odors, noise, smoke, or health and safety hazards outside of the building in which the process takes place. Located near major roads, the Town requires buffer zones, landscaping and appropriate screening. The Town typically allows more flexibility in design here, but we still have requirements to maintain a certain professional tone and tenor. Currently, IPS, FedEx Tech Connect, CCL Label, CCL, Korsini and ChemStation are located in the Town’s Technology / Employment Center.
Collierville 2040 goes into great detail, with diagrams, pictures, and data. We also have “plans within the plans,” such as an I-269 and Historic District small area plan(s). I would encourage all citizens and interested parties to fully explore Collierville 2040. Not only will you become educated about the development and design direction of our community, you will also discover that, like Sir Edmund Hillary, Collierville has a clear vision for success.
– John Duncan, Director of Economic Development, Town of Collierville