City to again seek bids for convention center development

By ANTHONY WARREN,

Weeks after rejecting initial bids, Jackson is again prepared to seek proposals to develop approximately eight acres of land across from the Jackson Convention Complex.

Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba and the Jackson Redevelopment Authority have called a press conference for March 28 to discuss plans.

In February, the Sun reported that Jackson city officials had rejected three proposals to develop the Pascagoula Street site, which has long been considered the ideal place for a convention center hotel.

Previously, the city had brought in a private consultant to determine what best to do with the site. Ultimately, consultants said the 7.75 acres should be a mixed-use development, complete with a hotel, entertainment and event space, office space, and residential and retail units.

Based on those recommendations, Jackson issued a request for proposals last summer. However, all three proposals were rejected by the evaluation team.

“None met the criteria we were looking for,” Planning and Development Director Mukesh Kumar. “Each had some good points, but this RFP was for a master developer – someone to oversee the entire proposal.

“None of the proposals demonstrated the firms’ abilities to manage the entire project.”

The press conference is slated for 3 p.m., on the second floor of the Jackson Convention Complex. The complex is located at 105 E. Pascagoula St., downtown.

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1. He drove a blue ‘77 Chevy Nova in high school. 2. He played on Jackson Prep’s 1985 and 1986 state championship basketball teams.