Wednesday, October 14, 2015

State, local officials in talks to help relocate Regal to waterfront

City, county and state leaders are in negotiations with Regal Entertainment Group to potentially relocate the movie theater company's corporate headquarters from the Halls community to the South Knoxville waterfront at the old Baptist Hospital site, multiple sources confirmed to WBIR 10News.

The proposed deal with the nation's largest theater chain could cost the three governments as much as a combined $10 million and possibly more, the sources said.

The plan would entail the city essentially buying part of the property – more than likely the main building still standing just west of the Gay Street Bridge. Tennova Healthcare initially sold the site to Georgia-based developer Blanchard and Calhoun for $6.25 million.

The city supported the project by securing an Environmental Protection Agency brownfield remediation grant,and through a $22 million tax increment financing, or TIF, package.

The sources spoke to WBIR on the condition of anonymity because the deal, which could include tax breaks, has not yet been finalized.

If it does go through, Knoxville City Council and Knox County Commission will still have to sign off on it.

The sources told WBIR that such a proposal could possibly go before the two governing bodies within a month.

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