The Memphis City Council’s highly anticipated landmarks vote — Ordinance 5692 — was tabled last month ahead of its third and final reading.
The effort to get Cooper-Young Landmarks status with the city has been an ongoing battle that all parties were hoping would conclude this session. A compromise between the city council and community groups, the ordinance, if passed, would give Cooper-Young permanent Landmarks status with protections against certain types of development. The council had sought to assert more control over the Landmarks designation process in the face of new applications from Cooper-Young and Speedway Terrace, the first such applications in almost 20 years. The compromise was mostly about installing a set of safeguards and procedures into the process going forward not about the merits of the CY application.
But at the August meeting where the ordinance was to receive its third and final reading, council members tabled the issue in the face of a letter from the Tennessee Historical Commission that cited concerns about the ordinance.
There is still time to email your city council representative and your super district representative to let them know how this will affect Cooper-Young before the next meeting. Residents are also welcome to attend the Landmarks Commission meetings at Memphis City Hall on the third Thursday of the month for the final vote and to offer public comment on all certificates of appropriateness being considered for buildings being demolished and built in our neighborhood or undergoing significant modifications to historic structures.
Please feel free to reach out to the CYCA Landmarks Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions about navigating the Landmarks process or when and how to offer public comment for Landmarks issues in our neighborhood.