The Insider, Oct. 4 

Mall wrecking ball

Fox 16 grabbed an interview with Jim Strode of the Strode Property Group about its acquisition of the failed University Mall. Strode bought the land from Arkansas families and also terminated the mall lease with the Simon Property Group, clearing the way for redevelopment.

The final few tenants have until Oct. 27 to vacate, but Strode said he expected all tenants to be out sooner and that demolition would begin immediately. The new lifestyle center to be known as Park Avenue may include a Target. Strode also told Fox 16 he was interested in multi-family residences, and we hear local developers are hoping to partner with Strode on office development in the area, perhaps for health-related offices.

The property sale hadn't turned up in county records at press time. That will disclose the land sale price, but not the terms of the termination of the Simon lease.

Feeling better

County Judge Buddy Villines reports that he's feeling better these days thanks to adjustment to medication he's taking for a heart condition and consequently feeling more optimistic about making a race for re-election next year. We'd reported earlier that he was contemplating an end to public service, in part because of health problems.

Villines said he'd still have to talk to friends and family and evaluate his energy level after a hospitalization scheduled later this month to correct an irregular heart rhythm.

Rumors and innuendo

We can't tell you it's true, but we can tell you this political gossip is going around. At a minimum, its repetition reflects continuing mixed emotions among Democratic Party regulars toward Lt. Gov. Bill Halter. The rumor is that former Sen. Bill Gwatney, who's been vigorous as the new chairman of the state Democratic Party, might run for lieutenant governor in 2010 against incumbent Halter. That could set him up for a run to succeed Gov. Mike Beebe in 2014. All highly speculative, but …

Candor from Huck

A lengthy and warm profile of presidential candidate Mike Huckabee in the current New Republic is notable for a rare admission of a shortcoming by the former governor. The article noted Huckabee's love for comparisons, sometimes biting ones, as when he compared tough Arkansas news reporters to disgraced journalists Janet Cooke and Jayson Blair. Said the article:

“Now, asked about this comparison, Huckabee says it illustrates his greatest fault: ‘You'll see it — one of the things that gets me in trouble is my love of metaphors. I use hyperbole in the course of trying to paint a word picture. I pay a dear price for it.'”


From the ArkTimes store

Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

More by Fritz Brantley

  • The incredible shrinking Huckabee

    Plus: COPS!
    • Dec 20, 2007
  • Going whole hog

    A Q&A with irreverent Arkansas-raised comedian Matt Besser
    • Dec 20, 2007
  • The Week That Was, Dec. 20

    The UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS. After our deadline last week, they landed a football coach, the collegiately successful — but personality-challenged — Bobby Petrino. Petrino fled a losing record with the Atlanta Falcons, who hurled insults at him in his wake.
    • Dec 20, 2007
  • More »

More by Arkansas Times Staff

Most Shared

Latest in The Insider

  • All in the family

    Old habits die hard. We may have a new Republican majority in the legislature, but like the old Democratic majority, it still doesn't hurt to have a lawmaker spouse to land a part-time job during the legislative session.
    • Jan 30, 2013
  • 'Circuit breaker' legal

    When we first asked Gov. Mike Beebe about the "circuit breaker" idea out of Arizona (automatically opting out of Medicaid expansion if the feds reduce the matching rates in the future), he said it was fine but noted that states can already opt out at any time, an assurance he got in writing from the feds.
    • Jan 30, 2013
  • Church goes to school in Conway

    An interesting controversy is brewing in Conway Public Schools, periodically a scene of discord as more liberal constituents object to the heavy dose of religion that powerful local churches have tried to inject into the schools, particularly in sex education short on science and long on abstinence.
    • Jan 23, 2013
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »


  1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31

Most Viewed

  • House and Senate pass legislation to rein in pharmacy benefit managers

    On Wednesday, both chambers of the Arkansas legislature approved identical versions of a bill to regulate pharmacy benefit managers, the powerful health care companies at the center of a dispute over cuts in reimbursements paid to pharmacists.
  • Best restaurants of Arkansas 2018

    It's a tough business, the restaurant industry. Over the 37 years that the Arkansas Times has asked its readers to tell us which restaurants and bakeries, chefs and bartenders, hamburgers and home cookin' and such are the best, even the favorites have come and gone.
  • Readers Choice 2018 results

    Soup to nuts, restaurant-wise.
  • The post-prison license hurdle

    Arkansas is trying to make it easier for those released from ADC to get licenses and IDs. But challenges remain.

Most Recent Comments


© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation