Dressed in red, which represented the blood of their ancestors, North Memphis residents and supporters showed up in opposition to Memphis 3.0. (Photo: Karanja A. Ajanaku)

With several dozen North Memphis residents on hand for ” a show of force,” the Memphis City Council on Tuesday put off its initial vote on a proposed land use and development plan envisioned as a 20-year road map.

Dr. Carnita Atwater tells the Memphis City Council why she and others from North Memphis oppose Memphis 3.0. (Photo: Karanja A. Ajanaku)

New Chicago CDC spokesperson Dr. Carnita Atwater said the residents she is in association with did not oppose a comprehensive plan but are not on board with Memphis 3.O in its current form. As written, Memphis 3.O. does not reflect their input and contributes to gentrification, she said.

Before the council was a request to approve the plan on the first of three required readings. Following a motion by City Councilman Berlin Boyd, the council voted to delay action at least until a community meeting can be held for the North Memphis area.

Doug McGowen, the city’s chief operating officer, briefly noted that there had been hearings on the plan in North Memphis, adding that a two-week delay for the proposed meeting was “not too much to ask.”

“We’ve been waiting 38 years for a comprehensive plan.”

Atwater said the New Chicago area has been shortchanged and mostly overlooked for 40-plus years. She said the Memphis 3.0 plan needs to reflect action her group and others are convinced are essential for the community’s growth and development.

“We have our own revitalization plan that they did not put into Memphis 3.0. …We are still going to charge them with genocide if they do not give our community what we deserve as citizens.”

She expounded on that position during a press conference after the hearing. Here is an excerpt from that exchange.