Mayor to Study Highway 80 Potential | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Mayor to Study Highway 80 Potential

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Mayor Harvey Johnson urges residents to add their information to the CodeRED database.

Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. is putting the Highway 80 corridor on his agenda this year. The mayor announced a $500,000 study of MetroCenter Mall and the U.S. Highway 80 corridor at a news conference yesterday, in the company of developers and interim Planning and Development Director Corinne Fox.

"We have a plan, to be carried out with funds from the Economic Development Administration, to the tune of $400,000 that's going to allow us to study economic development potential of the highway 80 corridor," Johnson told reporters.

The $400,000 comes from a U.S. Economic Development Administration grant, and Jackson will pitch in an extra $100,000 in matching funds to draw down the federal money.

Johnson called the Highway 80 corridor, which runs parallel with U.S. Interstate 20, a vital section of the city that desperately needs redevelopment.

"At one time this was a highly trafficked area with a lot of economic development. We're pleased to look forward to the level of activity again," Johnson said. "We want to commend those businesses that have stayed and advanced their activities on Highway 80, and to let them know that help is on the way."

Johnson said the city had not yet selected a contractor to do the study, and Johnson would not speculate on a potential taker.

Previous Comments

ID
150574
Comment

Im glad yall posted this on the JFP because on the CL under this same headline, there is no constructive ideas about bringing the metrocenter back to vitality just wishes and hopes of failure for metrocenter. Lets show them we are idealist, i say bring a Casino and movie theater.

Author
NewJackson
Date
2009-08-05T14:27:04-06:00
ID
150578
Comment

The casino idea will be a piece of work to get through the Legislature, especially given that they try to block anything to benefit Jackson. I also don't want the city to be too reliant on a casino as well, but our economy is diversified enough to where we wouldn't suffer as big a blow back if the economy turned. I would like to see mixed-used developments along Highway 80. With the area being as close to JSU and the future redevelopment efforts going on there, the two areas could merge and really blossom into a thing of beauty for Jackson.

Author
golden eagle
Date
2009-08-05T15:10:18-06:00
ID
150579
Comment

what about the movie theater, just crush all my dreams golden

Author
NewJackson
Date
2009-08-05T15:37:30-06:00
ID
150580
Comment

Classic Harvey. And why wasn't this done during his first two terms as the corridor continued to deteriorate? I hope the study concentrates as much on community empowerment as it does mapping out an economic plan...

Author
eyerah
Date
2009-08-05T16:08:26-06:00
ID
150581
Comment

Classic what, dont you study bsfore you take a test EYERAH, thank God HArvey dont shoot from the hip. Offer constructive ideas

Author
NewJackson
Date
2009-08-05T16:14:22-06:00
ID
150587
Comment

There was a movie theater there for ages (Metrocenter Cinema 4). It closed when business went bad. Otherwise, it's just the idea of Harvey doing a Study. He has a Study for everything, but that's as far as they'll go. Remember Maple-Linder?

Author
Ironghost
Date
2009-08-05T17:21:13-06:00
ID
150597
Comment

ok Chrisler i mean ironghost, my bad election is over the people have spoken.

Author
NewJackson
Date
2009-08-05T19:08:35-06:00
ID
150604
Comment

NewJ: I recall Harvey's first two attempts at running Jackson. History repeats, ya know. Oh, and it's Ironghost. Not Chrisler. Get it straight.

Author
Ironghost
Date
2009-08-05T20:16:22-06:00
ID
150607
Comment

Sometimes, you have to study things to get it right. I'm sure the mayor knows what the problems and needs are, but at the same time, he needs to know what the best ways are at going about it. It goes beyond simply cracking down on crime and beautifying the area. About that movie theater: it can be part of the plan.

Author
golden eagle
Date
2009-08-05T20:48:43-06:00
ID
150614
Comment

"Remember Maple-Linder?" Yes, we all remember Maple-Linder. Just as Johnson was finally getting his strategy to work-- much to the chagrin of the Clarion Ledger and NJAM -- Melton came in and completely undid the progress that was being made. Hopefully, we'll see Johnson re-implement some of the strategies encouraged by Maple-Linder. Oh, look at that... Public crime stats flowing easily. Community policing efforts. It's already happening and will continue. You HAVE TO DO STUDIES and act on the results, Iron. In many cases applying for grants, loans, etc require some form of study to back conclusions and a need for funds. It also helps get the public and media behind your agenda. Studies show a 3rd party perspective vs the "I know what's best" perspective. Remember that "I know what's best" perspective? It made a national mockery of our city. It landed us in courtroom after courtroom because of a flagrant lack of respect for the red tape that exists to prevent such idiotic behavior. It cost us nearly four years and thousands upon thousands of wasted tax-payer dollars. It made me embarrassed to call Jackson my home -- too often. I'd rather have the Johnson administration's legacy over Melton's (RIP) any day! Slow and calculated for the win, please.

Author
kaust
Date
2009-08-06T06:32:26-06:00
ID
150616
Comment

thanks, Knol. You said it well, and I am with you on that! Businesses do studies, too, before launching a new initiative or product.

Author
Izzy
Date
2009-08-06T06:47:16-06:00
ID
150618
Comment

baquan, I disagree about Melton... I think he had a vision and I think that's why so many people supported him, initially, and why much of his opposition secretly hoped they were wrong about him. But, as the saying goes, “Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.” Melton couldn't translate his vision into a reality because he didn't know the reality enough to establish a strategy (read: plan of action). True leaders know, the way you translate vision to reality is by better understanding the current situation. After all, you can't get to point B without first knowing where the hell point A is... You come to that understanding by studying it and getting 3rd party validation (read: confirmation and proof from a party not invested in your vision). Implementing a strategy without knowledge of the situation is, to put it simply, foolish and reckless. Jackson has been there and done that. Again, I'll take slow and calculated for the win.

Author
kaust
Date
2009-08-06T07:21:58-06:00
ID
150619
Comment

Kaust: Dude, I am fully aware that sometimes you might need a study before undertaking a complex project. What I refer to is Harvey's tendency to have studies done and then refuse to follow them. If he's learned his lesson, fine. But I refuse to believe the man until he makes good on his promises. I recall High Street all too well.

Author
Ironghost
Date
2009-08-06T07:46:32-06:00
ID
150623
Comment

NewJack, where in my post did i say i'm against studies? I'm not against studies, i work in a field where we do studies all of the time. i also know that we often waste a lot of money in my field doing studies, either because they turn out to be inconclusive, or yield no knew info, or don't get followed up on. Harvey's history as mayor allows me to be skeptical, particularly because no one has addressed my earlier statement about why this wasn't done during his first two terms as the area continued to decline under his watch. i guess i'd be more comfortable if there were more details about what, in particular, would be included in the study and what the time frame for it is. it's not like hwy 80 would be a brand new development. it has an infrastructure (albeit crumbling) and a history to go by. here's a suggestion that won't cost $500k: center a large part of the development of hwy 80 around the wants and needs of college students. Make it attractive where JSU students don't need to go to Madison or Rankin to shop or other parts of Jackson to live or be entertained. that's a start...

Author
eyerah
Date
2009-08-06T10:15:26-06:00
ID
150640
Comment

Eyerah do you give him credit for the convention center thats has spurred other development. I think when he commisioned a study on that it worked. Stop being so negative and help.

Author
NewJackson
Date
2009-08-06T15:12:04-06:00
ID
150642
Comment

[quote]Stop being so negative and help. [/quote] We are helping. We're reminding people of Harvey's past love of Studies and Unfulfilled promises. We're telling people to keep Harvey on his toes, and demand he make progress. We're not letting him relax, but prodding him to make progress.

Author
Ironghost
Date
2009-08-06T15:35:36-06:00
ID
150643
Comment

Personally, I'm thrilled to have a mayor who wants to devote some time into studying what needs to be done before jumping in like a maniac and messing things up worse. You have to watch people who say, "Let's stop talking and doing doing!" Sometimes, that's true. Sometimes, it's a sign of someone who isn't willing to take the time to do due diligence and best practices and do things right. Johnson has his head straight about the need to take time to things right. That old meme about him and his studies was one pushed by the Ledger board, and at this point is patently absurd, after the last four years. Good, lasting development doesn't happen overnight, nor should it. Cheers to him, especially considering that most of the money for the study is coming from a grant that will multiply our contribution by five. Johnson is very good at getting this kind of money to do stuff with, and we are fortunate to have him back to get this kind of thing done.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2009-08-06T15:37:20-06:00
ID
150645
Comment

We are helping. We're reminding people of Harvey's past love of Studies and Unfulfilled promises. Actually, no you're not. You're reminding the rest of us of the kind of empty rhetoric that got us Melton for the last four years. Time to move forward, Iron et al, and lose the sound and fury of empty sound bites that signify nothing.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2009-08-06T15:38:37-06:00
ID
150646
Comment

Oh, there's Donna. :) I said something negative about the JFP's heroic Mayor, and here comes the calvary! Donna, I recall his faults very well, it's not "empty rhetoric". If anything comes of this study I will know he changed. We shall see.

Author
Ironghost
Date
2009-08-06T15:43:26-06:00
ID
150648
Comment

IG said...here comes the calvary! Honey? That's cavalry. Now I have to get this image out of my head of Donna on a hill far away. No cross: just the hill. Carry on. :D

Author
Lady Havoc
Date
2009-08-06T16:39:20-06:00
ID
150652
Comment

here's a suggestion that won't cost $500k: center a large part of the development of hwy 80 around the wants and needs of college students. Make it attractive where JSU students don't need to go to Madison or Rankin to shop or other parts of Jackson to live or be entertained. that's a start... While I didn't say as much, that's the angle I was pointing to earlier about JSU and the Hwy. 80 area. They're so close that it should be natural that their redevelopments meet and create a new synergy in Jackson. Maybe not quite like Fondren and downtown, but it could come quite close.

Author
golden eagle
Date
2009-08-06T17:17:55-06:00

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