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It was a good week for Conway

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It was a good week for...

CONWAY. PrivacyStar, a company that provides privacy for smartphone users, announced that, as part of its expansion of its corporate headquarters in downtown Conway, it will add 121 jobs at an average hourly wage of $38 over the next two years.

MAIN STREET LITTLE ROCK. A joint venture between Moses Tucker and the Doyle Rogers Co. to redevelop the old Blass department store at Fourth and Main closed on $20 million in financing. Construction will start Aug. 15. The Mann project — named for the building architect George Mann — is to be completed June 2013. It includes 90,000 square feet in the building at Fourth and Main and a three-story annex. Some 65,000 square feet is already pre-leased by Arkansas Child Support Enforcement. It will also have 8,000 square feet of retail space and 19 loft apartments. A 400-space parking deck is to be built on the west side of the buildings.

It was a bad week for...

MICHAEL DYER. The football phenom and Little Rock Christian graduate was abruptly dismissed from the Arkansas State football team after Arkansas State officials learned of a March traffic stop in White County, where, though Dyer was only cited for speeding, it was revealed by the Jonesboro Sun that the state trooper who made the stop found another person in the car with a handgun and a substance believed to be marijuana. Dyer, who played at Auburn through his sophomore season, left the school after admitting during a trial of another man that his gun was used in a robbery and that he had smoked marijuana.

THE ARKANSAS HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT. Director Scott Bennett told the cities of Little Rock and North Little Rock that they and their consulting engineers don't know what they're talking about. The one and only solution for what the Highway Department perceives is a problem with the Broadway Bridge is to tear it down and replace it with an ugly piece of concrete similar to, say, the homely Main Street span. Mayors Mark Stodola and Pat Hays had proposed, following the construction of a new bridge, to convert the Broadway Bridge into a glorious public plaza between Dickey-Stephens Park and the Robinson Music Hall. It would be Little Rock's own version of New York's wildly popular High Line railroad-to-park conversion.

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