Architecture Firm Submits PILOT Request for Memphis’ Universal Life Building

Contingent on the approval of a PILOT request, the historic Universal Life Building at 480 & 504 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Ave. could soon get its second wind. Juan Self and Jimmie Tucker of Self + Tucker Architects recently submitted a PILOT request that entails the renovation and repositioning of the renowned building for office use.

Rendering of the Universal Life building

Contingent on the approval of a PILOT request, the historic Universal Life Building at 480 & 504 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Ave. could soon get its second wind. Juan Self and Jimmie Tucker of Self + Tucker Architects recently submitted a PILOT request that entails the renovation and repositioning of the renowned building for office use.

The two-story building has been vacant since 2001 and has more than 25,000 square feet of leasable space. It was developed in 1949 and served as the headquarters of the Universal Life Insurance Co., one of the largest African-American-owned life insurance companies. Due to its unique architectural style, Egyptian Revival architecture, the building was also listed in 2007 on the National Register of Historic Places.

According to the PILOT request, the architecture firm plans to incorporate architectural lighting as part of the project; to resurface and upgrade the existing parking lot; and to pursue Gold LEED certification through the implementation of sustainable features such as photovoltaic panels, energy-efficient windows and water-efficient fixtures.

Upon completion, Self + Tucker Architects plans to lease part of the building, which will serve as the architecture firm’s new headquarters.

Image Courtesy of the Downtown Memphis Commission