Farish Street development back on the agenda for city leaders

Published: Jun. 23, 2021 at 11:04 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - After numerous failed attempts at redeveloping the Farish Street area, the city of Jackson is trying again.

Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba is working with a consulting agency to draft a masterplan for a Farish Street redevelopment project. This comes after the city council authorized him to do so at Tuesday’s meeting.

“We have the benefit of hindsight to see where we have failed and where there have been missteps,” Mayor Lumumba said. ”Furthermore, what we now have to our benefit is that we’re no longer embroiled in a legal battle.”

A legal battle, he said, that prevented the possibility of redevelopment in the area for many years.

“We don’t just want to stick up another banner,” the mayor said. “We actually want to have a true brick and mortar that [residents] can see right here on Farish Street.”

After making sure the idea is feasible, the hope is to turn a building at the intersection of North Farish Street and East Amite Street into a mix-used development that includes a food hall. It’s a similar concept to the Cultivation Food Hall off of Eastover Drive.

But as Latoya Cutts with the Jackson Redevelopment Authority explained, the project is still in its early stages.

“This pre-development phase of the project... demonstrates to the public that we’re going to do the proper due diligence necessary before we bring a full project to them to get them excited about,” Cutts said.

Lumumba said the city is taking a more informed approach but that they are inching closer to the prospect of seeing development.

“We want our residents to voice what they want to see here on Farish Street and what they feel is a proper homage and a proper opportunity for us to take advantage of as a city,” he said.

The Jackson Redevelopment Authority said they should have an idea as to whether they can move forward with the project in the next 2 or 3 months.

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