Convention center hotel, parking garage wanted for first phase of downtown Jackson revitalization project

Mayor, planning and development director present request for proposals to attract “master developer”

Developer wanted for downtown project

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Jackson city leaders hope a major developer will help revitalize more than seven acres that sit across from the city’s convention complex, an area regularly used as makeshift parking.

Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba announced the release of a request for proposals concerning that area Thursday.

Lumumba said the proposals must also contain certain requirements, like a new parking garage and convention center hotel constructed in the project’s first phase.

Jackson officials hope the temporary parking lot across from the Jackson Convention Complex -- which comprises more than seven acres -- will soon be home to retail, residential and commercial developments, including a convention hotel and parking garage. (Source: WLBT)
Jackson officials hope the temporary parking lot across from the Jackson Convention Complex -- which comprises more than seven acres -- will soon be home to retail, residential and commercial developments, including a convention hotel and parking garage. (Source: WLBT)

The mayor said they also want the project to include residential and retail opportunities, in part because of feedback they’ve gotten through meetings with the public.

“Every day, approximately 40,000 people travel into the city of Jackson and we have to assure that we are hitting the marks and taking advantage of that population to ensure that the people who live and work here each and every day see a city which is growing, a city which is addressing the many needs that it has, and so our strategy for economic development has to be consistent with that," Lumumba said.

Mukesh Kumar, Jackson’s planning and development director, saw firsthand what people want in a downtown space through its Downtown Design Dialogue session with residents and stakeholders.

“People are almost never attracted to what looks good. People are always attracted to other people,” Kumar said. “That particular principle is something which has driven us to come up with the concept plan that we have.”

Proposals from potential developers are due May 9, according to the RFP.

Kumar said they hope to award contracts by late August, pending city council approval.

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