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Greater Memphis Chamber Celebrates $71.2 million Investment in Memphis Infrastructure

lamar infrastructure

U.S. Department of Transportation Infrastructure For Rebuilding America grants money for Lamar Avenue Upgrades

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (June 5, 2018) – The Greater Memphis Chamber today celebrates the announcement that Memphis has been awarded a $71.2 million U.S. Department of Transportation Infrastructure For Rebuilding America (INFRA) grant for roadway repairs and capacity upgrades to Lamar Avenue.

“The Lamar Avenue improvements will create thousands of new jobs and significantly reduce unemployment and poverty in the region,” said Phil Trenary, President and CEO of the Greater Memphis Chamber. “As we work on moving Memphis forward, this type of success is significant for Memphis businesses and for our recruitment and retention efforts because it further strengthens our position as the center of business in North America.”

The Lamar corridor is a nationally and regionally significant multimodal freight corridor linking interstate highways, airports, maritime ports and rail. It connects Memphis, TN/Shelby County to Birmingham, AL; Atlanta, GA, and other major metropolitan cities in the Southeast, moving regional, national and global goods.

The Chamber facilitated and coordinated development of the funding proposal for improvement to Lamar Avenue, a key freight corridor that supports 71,000 jobs and serves as a critical link in national and global supply chains. The Chamber coordinated with businesses, TDOT and local government to develop an application for funding to complete the project, obtaining multi-state legislative support and community-wide prioritization of the project.

This announcement is the culmination of years of work and collaboration on the part of our organization and a host of other players including but not limited to the US Department of Transportation and the Honorable Secretary Chao, Governor Bill Haslam, members of our regional congressional delegation, TDOT, Mayors Jim Strickland and Mark H. Luttrell, Jr., the MPO, countless other political leaders, our partner agencies and our membership for their efforts to bring home this win for Memphis.

“This is evidence of what happens when there is great collaboration and strong partnerships between the public and private sectors,” Trenary said.

Significance of Lamar Avenue

  • The Lamar Corridor is a nationally and regionally significant multimodal freight corridor.
  • Lamar Avenue is a critical link the national and global supply chain.
  • It links interstate highways, airports, maritime ports, and rail.
  • Lamar Avenue is a key gateway to the east coast ports for exporting to Europe, South America, and other key markets internationally.
  • Lamar Avenue links the largest air freight hub in the United States with distribution centers serving the largest metropolitan areas of the northeast.
  • The corridor serves over 96 million square feet of industrial space.
  • 20 Fortune 500 Companies are located in the corridor.
  • Major employers in the area include FedEx, Nike, BNSF, Flextronics, and Technicolor.
  • There are over 1300 manufacturing, transportation, distribution and logistics companies in the area employing over 70,000 people.
  • 1500 permanent jobs will be created and nearly 2000 short-term construction jobs related to the project.
  • Significant reduction in accidents in the corridor.
  • Reduces congestion and delays along the corridors, saving our businesses time and money and making more attractive for new companies to invest here.
  • This is one of 26 grants awarded today throughout the United States. It is the only grant in the state of Tennessee.

Greater Memphis Chamber | 22 North Front Street Suite 200 | Memphis, TN 38103-2100 | 901-543-3500
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