The Jackson State University Development Foundation, Inc., along with partners at Jackson State, Trustmark National Bank and the City of Jackson, officially broke ground on One University Place during a ceremony at 10 a.m., Wednesday, Oct. 28, at 1400 John R. Lynch Street, near the Dalton Street intersection. University Place is a multi-million dollar project that is one of the largest construction projects in west Jackson in recent decades. “This is another great day in the history of JSU,” said Leland Speed, chairman of the foundation. “Folks need to come out and take a look at the JSU that exists today. Exciting things are happening at JSU and the development foundation is playing its part.”
The space will include 78 luxury one- and two-bedroom apartments above 22,000 square feet of prime retail space. Located immediately adjacent to the Jackson State University campus, One University Place is an ideal location for those who want to live and shop at the center of JSU campus life, only one mile from downtown Jackson. The project initiates the community revitalization of an underserved neighborhood located between the JSU campus and downtown Jackson. Upon completion, the University Place neighborhood is expected to include 300 for-sale homes for moderate income families, 50,000 square feet of retail space and more than 300 rental apartments, totaling over $150 million in development. “Our plan has always been to be responsible in our efforts to help improve the community that has long supported us,” said JSU President Ronald Mason, Jr. “We are very thankful to have partners who share our vision and dedication to not only this immediate community, but to this city and state. We talk about challenging minds and changing lives. This space, with the planned single family affordable homes , will create an ideal environment to do so.”
The space, which compliments JSU architecture, was designed using new urbanist and green design principals. Because it is located on previously developed residential and commercial land, there is already direct access to roads, water, sewer and other infrastructure from the site. The project will contain or be within one-half mile of at least 10 basic services needed by a community. Also, by bringing new services to the community, the project reduces driving distances for current neighborhood residents.
“I am so thrilled to see this project begin,” said Jackson Mayor Harvey Johnson. “I had an opportunity to work with the development team during my recent tenure with Jackson State. “This major development will not only provide additional housing and retail amenities for the students, faculty and staff at Jackson State University, but I believe it will truly be a catalyst that will spark other meaningful development between downtown and the campus. University Place will be a great asset for our community.”
One University Place was funded by a $15 million New Money Tax Credit (NMTC) allocation provided by the Local Initiatives Support Corporation and Hampton Roads Ventures. Trustmark National Bank provided the leveraged loan and purchased both the state and federal tax credits. Transcapital / Dudley Ventures facilitated all aspects of the financing. One University Place represents the first NMTC project of the Jackson State University Development Foundation, Inc., the nonprofit corporation that supports the mission of Jackson State University, an historically black university in Jackson, Miss. For more information about One University Place or to track the progress of the building’s construction, please visit www.universityplaceofjackson.com.
To keep up with the progress, visit the live webcam of the development at http://oxblue.com/pro/open/harrellcontracting/jsu.