JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - The old Morris Ice Company building sits on Commerce Street, empty for more than 30 years.
A local businessman hopes to heat up the Jackson entertainment scene, on the floors where ice was produced in its heyday.
“This place has soul you know,” said Jack Pickering gazing around the walls of the 95-year-old Morris Ice Company building.
There will soon be new life here as Pickering plans to transform the vacant Commerce Street business into an entertainment venue.
"You'll see a restaurant, an awesome outside spot, a courtyard," said Pickering. "So people can come on the weekends, listen to live music, have good food, good entertainment, good company".
The 25-year-old developer is the son of former Congressman Chip Pickering and grandson of retired federal judge Charles Pickering.
Upon returning to the state from a stint in Charleston, South Carolina, he spotted the property in April.
Pickering purchased the 15,000 square foot building which sits on four acres in December.
It will include an outdoor courtyard for live music.
The 1924 natural gas engine will be a centerpiece.
“This is a really cool piece. We’re gonna leave it intact,” said the property owner about the sprawling engine that takes up a large portion of the first floor plant space.
The Ole Miss Business Marketing major also has plans for multi-use space and creating a network among the nearby businesses.
“When I saw it a vision came to life. I said something has to be done to this place,” Pickering added. “I want to create a coalition of people but also companies to help resurrect commerce street as a thriving area.”
The work begins this summer. Pickering anticipates six to eight months for renovations.