Staff photo by Erin O. Smith / The College Hill Courts on Chattanooga's Westside were built in 1940 and are the largest and oldest housing project owned by the Chattanooga Housing Authority. CHA is considering a new plan to redevelop the area with private developers and add more market-rate housing while preserving the subsidized housing and related parks and James A. Henry school building.

CHA hires implementation manager for Westside plan

The Chattanooga Housing Authority board Tuesday agreed to hire the Washington, D.C., firm of EJP Consulting to help implement a plan to improve Chattanooga's Westside of downtown, which includes CHA's biggest and oldest housing project.

CHA directors voted to spend $200,000 to hire EJP as an implementation manager for the Westside Evolves plan, which was unveiled over the weekend. The plan proposes renovating both the 429-unit College Hills Courts and the 132-unit Gateway Towers owned by CHA and developing other nearby properties and the former James A. Henry school to create a bigger, more diverse and dynamic community.

Under the direction of project manager Rhae Parkes, EJP Consulting Group worked wtih the Chattanooga Design Studio, the city and CHA over the past nine months to solicit ideas from local residents and stakeholders to develop the renovation plan billed as "Westside Community Evolves."

To help implement the ideas, EJP will work to create interest by developers, investors, foundations and others to help fund the proposed new projects. The local investments could be matched with up to $35 million in Choice Neighborhood grants if CHA is successful in securing such federal aid.

College Hill Courts was built in 1940 and is the biggest and oldest housing project in Chattanooga.


Consumer confidence rises slightly in July

U.S. consumer confidence was relatively unchanged from June to July, but remains at its highest level since February 2020, just before the coronavirus pandemic hit the U.S.

The Conference Board reported Tuesday that its consumer confidence index inched up in July to 129.1, up from last month's reading of 128.9. It's the sixth straight month that the measurement has risen. Consumers' appraisal of current business conditions ticked up slightly to 160.3 from 159.6 in June.

Consumers' short term expectations came in at 108.4, down from 108.5 last month. Economists watch consumer confidence because consumer spending accounts for 70% of economic activity.


Starbucks sales hit record high

Starbucks saw record sales in its fiscal third quarter as the impact of the pandemic receded and customers flocked to its stores.

The Seattle-based coffee giant said its revenue soared 78% to $7.5 billion in the April-June period, an all-time high. That beat Wall Street's forecast. Starbucks said its global same-store sales —— or sales at locations open at least a year —— jumped 73% from the same period last year.

Starbucks felt the brunt of the pandemic in the April-June period last year, when many stores were closed and same-store sales tumbled 40%.


UPS earns $2.7 billion but volume still dips

UPS had another strong quarter with shipments to homes continuing at a blistering pace, though revenue at home was a little weaker than some had expected. Its stock fell in afternoon trading Tuesday.

Domestic revenue still grew 10.2% to $14.40 billion in the second quarter, with per-piece revenue rising 13.4%. However, Wall Street had projected domestic revenue of $14.76 billion.

Revenue from international operations spiked 30% to $4.82 billion, which was better than the $4.57 billion analysts had expected. For the three months ended June 30, UPS earned $2.68 billion, or $3.05 per share.

Stripping out one-time costs, earnings were $3.06 per share, easily beating the $2.75 that Wall Street was looking for.

— Compiled by Dave Flessner