Good morning, Memphis, where the bitter cold has come to the area with temperatures feeling like they are in the single digits this morning.
But, first, the Downtown Memphis Commission selected 100 N. Main Development Partners to redevelop the tallest building in Memphis, our Corinne Kennedy reports.
The Downtown Mobility Authority voted to enter into exclusive negations with the team, which consists of Kevin Woods, Billy Orgel, Jay Lindy, Adam Slovis and Michael McLaughlin.
"The property will not be transferred out of our hands until the agreement is final. But this resolution does provide assurance to the development team so that they can spend the money that it takes to make this deal," DMC President Paul Young said.
KIPP Memphis faces two more potential closures
If the Shelby County School board votes to approve the recommendation to not renew the charter contracts, KIPP Memphis Collegiate Elementary and KIPP Memphis Academy Middle would have to close at the end of their school years, our Laura Testino reports.
The closures would bring the local network, which began in 2020 with seven schools, down to three. It would also impact about 550 students and more than 50 teachers.
SCS is recommending the schools close for academic performances, Angela Whitelaw, deputy superintendent of academics and Brittany Monda, the assistant superintendent of charter schools, explained.
Family flees Afganistan to their new home in Memphis
The Watandost family have settled in Memphis after fleeing Afghanistan about five months ago.
The family of three are among tens of thousands of Afghan refugees who entered the United States after the U.S. ended its 20-year war with Afghanistan with a final, chaotic evacuation of Kabul in August, our Katherine Burgess reports in her story for subscribers.
“It was sad,” Mohammad Watandost said. “It was a lot of chaos going on. I came here with my wife and my kid and left everything else behind. My life, my house, my parents, my brothers.”
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Shelby County Health Department orders COVID-19 home test kits
The Shelby County Health Department plans to order 90,000 home COVID-19 test kits to distribute around the county, Laura reports.
Turnaround is expected to take about four weeks, but the health department hopes to receive the kits even sooner than that, said Dr. Michelle Taylor, director of the Shelby County Health Department.
The total cost for the kits is roughly $1.4 million.
“I still think that eventually we’ll get to a point if we’re able to get test kits into households, people will do the right thing. I have faith in Shelby County and I have faith in our ability to have collective responsibility,” Taylor said.
Memphis International Airport’s new concourse to open next month
The Memphis International Airport announced it will open its modernized Concourse B on Feb. 15, our Astrid Kayembe reports.
The $245 million project includes upgraded bathrooms, cordless charging stations, new vendors, a children’s play area and a stage for live music.
“This is an exciting day for MEM, Memphis, and our passengers,” said Michael Keeney, chairman of the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority Board of Commissioners. “We are truly reinventing the Memphis travel experience, and we can’t wait to welcome our passengers on Feb. 15."
Panel finds probable cause for Sen. Katrina Robinson’s removal from legislature
The Senate Ethics Committee found probable cause to remove state Sen. Katrina Robinson from her elected position following her conviction on multiple federal fraud charges, our Melisssa Brown reports.
Robinson has the chance to mount a defense Thursday when the committee meets to consider making a formal recommendation to the full Senate for her removal.
"The purpose of Thursday’s meeting is for the committee to further discuss the charges against her and her criminal conviction, allow her to present a defense and to decide whether to issue a formal recommendation to the full Senate on the matter,” said Adam Kleinheider, a spokesperson for Lt. Gov. Randy McNally.
Memphis basketball assistant Rasheeed Wallace to finish season remotely
Due to health and safety protocols related to COVID-19, Rasheed Wallace, first-year Memphis basketball assistant will work remotely “in more of a consultant’s role” for the rest of the season, Penny Hardaway said.
“He’s still part of who we are,” Hardaway said. “He’s still a coach, even though we’re saying he’s in a consultant’s role. (But) with his health and safety, I said, ‘Hey, can you just be a consultant, basically, remotely? We still want your opinion and your assessment of what’s going on. Get on Zoom with the guys.’ The same things he would do if he was here.”
Wallace, who primarily works with the Tigers' centers and forwards, will continue to be paid by the university and no adjustments will be made to the terms of his agreement, our Jason Munz reports.
The 901 was written by Ray Padilla, the digital producer for The Commercial Appeal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @Ray_Padilla_.
This article originally appeared on Memphis Commercial Appeal: The 901: 100 N. Main plans; KIPP Memphis faces two school closures