Tuesday, April 3, 2018

DMC President Hopes for 'Solution' on Artist Eviction

Posted By on Tue, Apr 3, 2018 at 11:09 AM

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Downtown Memphis Commission (DMC) president Jennifer Oswalt said in a Tuesday statement that she hopes to "find a solution that works for all" on the recent eviction of Downtown artists from their home of 25 years.

While Chris Reyes and Sarah Fleming have begun packing up their belongings from their longtime home at 1 S. Main, Tuesday's statement from Oswalt shows further relief on the situation could be ahead.

Here's Oswalt's full statement posted to the DMC Facebook page on Tuesday:
click to enlarge Oswalt - DMC
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  • Oswalt

"Some of our online community may be aware of the conflict regarding Downtown residents Chris Reyes and Sarah Fleming.

Christopher Reyes and Sarah Fleming are an integral part of what makes Downtown Memphis what it is: interesting, colorful, engaging. Their creativity and dedication to this city and Downtown Memphis deserve to be heralded.

The Downtown Memphis Commission has a long history of collaborating with Chris and Sarah on multiple projects and supporting their work in Downtown. We believe their contributions have made Downtown better.

The investors who purchased the Madison Hotel were no doubt attracted to the neighborhood in part because of its authentic Memphis vibe, a vibe that Chris and Sarah helped create.

We believe in a Downtown Memphis that includes Chris and Sarah. And we have never stopped looking for ways to help make that happen. We are a community of creatives, artists, musicians, and makers. This creative heritage is what gives Memphis its very soul and authenticity. And we work every day to preserve it.
We have expressed our concerns to the stakeholders of 1 S. Main LLC and hope that our appeal and those from other community leaders will help them to want to find a solution that works for all.

The Downtown Memphis Commission was created to develop Downtown for the betterment of the entire region and is tasked with increasing population and property values in our core city.

It isn’t always an easy or straight-forward job, but we work every day to preserve what is good and great in our city and to nurture what can be even better.

—Jennifer Oswalt, Downtown Memphis Commission"

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