Vicksburg leaders hire appraiser as they move forward with tear - WLBT.com - Jackson, MS

Vicksburg leaders hire appraiser as they move forward with tearing down abandoned hospital

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
VICKSBURG, MS (WLBT) -

There is progress involving The city of Vicksburg's efforts to tear down the now abandon Kuhn Memorial State Hospital. City leaders are taking more steps to replace the old building with something bigger and better.

The city has adopted an urban renewal plan to take over Kuhn Memorial State Hospital and hopefully re-develop the 12 and half acre site to improve the quality of life in the area.

“It is just no use and it is just dangerous,” said next door neighbor Geneva Jones.

Jones lives feet away from the state hospital. In fact, her son was born inside the more than 200 year old facility, but now she said it is an eyesore and a breeding ground for problems along Martin Luther King Blvd.

“That needs knocking down," said Jones. "That ( hospital) is the past and it now has a new name, it’s now total danger,” 

The state hospital has been vacant since the late 1980’s attracting no new buyers to revive the facility. Last year, a murder victim's body was found by ghost hunters on the abandon site.

“After the death of the lady that was put back there, it would be a growing city,” added Jones.

The city agrees and has passed a resolution to move forward with acquiring the property.  Leaders just hired an appraiser this week to see how much it will cost to do that.

“We hope to go through the acquisition phase by the end of the year,” said Community Development Director Victor Gray Lewis.

Lewis said the city is also applying for state and federal funds to demolish and clean up the property, which could take up to two years. The goal is to replace the old building with what they are calling an economic driver for the Martin Luther King District.

“There is enough room there to create retail and residential development,” said Lewis.

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