The Forest 

If it's a cliché, you know it's gotta be true: Sometimes you can't see the forest for the trees.

Downtown Memphis is a place with a lot of trees: concrete and glass ones. With all the developments — residential and commercial — that have gone up over the last few years, and with the ones scheduled to go up in the next couple, it's easy to forget how far the city has come and to lose track of what's where.

Andy Kitzinger, vice president of planning and development for the Center City Commission, says, "Downtown Memphis is a model for residential growth in downtowns throughout the country. It's been recognized by the Urban Land Institute as one of the top 10 downtown turnarounds."

One of the most important characteristics of the downtown upswing has been the variety of successful developments. Mixed-use planning has helped downtown become a top tourist destination as well as a viable place to work, to live, to dine, and to find quality entertainment.

Residential development similarly offers a lot of variety. "Our strategic plan is focusing on diversity," Kitzinger says. "We're targeting housing types for all ages and income levels."

To the right is a downtown development map created by the Center City Commission, which reflects more than $3 billion in development projects recently completed, planned, or underway.

It's a forest out there. ■ — GA

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