After a year's long search with what it calls 3 aggressive offers on the table, Pinnacle Airlines Corporation said One Commerce Square in downtown Memphis has won.
"We needed to be in a spot that could comfortably consolidate what we have now and also accommodate the growth we're expecting to have in the next few years," said Joe Williams with Pinnacle.
Pinnacle, which operates regional jets for Delta and has two other subsidiaries that fly for other carriers, is currently located on Nonconnah near the Memphis Airport.
Once a lease is negotiated, Pinnacle will make One Commerce its headquarters, spreading its wings over 155,000 square feet throughout 12 of the building's 31 stories.
The city and county rallied with other partners to keep Pinnacle from moving out of Memphis. One of its options was to relocate to Olive Branch, Mississippi.
"We are elated they've chosen to stay here," said Memphis City Council Chairman Harold Collins. "The city went on record by saying we would provide 3 million dollars to help provide parking."
There was also another 15 million dollars for redevelopment of One Commerce. The funding for the project came from a combination of bonds, money from the City Center Commission, and Mayor A C Wharton's new economic development fund.
Center City Commission President Paul Morris said with Pinnacle's decision comes an enormous opportunity for economic growth.
"Downtown Memphis is in many ways our front door, our brand," said Morris.
Pinnacle plans to move 600 employees into one commerce and possibly increase that number to as much as 800, but they have thousands of other employees living other places.
"We're looking at around 19,000 room nights a year for trainees coming from around the world to Memphis who are going to be staying in hotels, eating in restaurants, shopping at retail stores," said Williams. "It's going to mean a lot of commercial activity for Memphis, a lot of revenue."
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