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Old 06-27-2010, 09:00 AM
 
Location: Hither and thither
423 posts, read 1,070,154 times
Reputation: 208

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I'm back in Jackson even as I type--my last brief visit was in 2007, and my last extensive visit was 2005. I'd say things have definitely changed for the better. Downtown seems to have more going on, with real potential for the area around the King Edward Hotel and Farish Street. In 2005 both of those projects seemed hopeless.

Fondren might not look that much different, but it has a safer feel to it. Back in '05 it was still seen as very emerging and a gamble for someone who wanted to renovate those homes. These days it seems very stable, and I can even see people making improvements to the homes on the west side of State Street.

One area that does NOT seem to be getting better is around Northpark Mall. I remember that seeming pretty nice in '05, but now there are quite a few vacancies, and some of the big names in the mall have been replaced with Mom and Pop shops. The mall still seemed busy, but not a premier shopping destination by any means. Is is possible that the new lifestyle center, Renaissance at Colony Park or whatever it's called, sucked a lot of life out of Northpark?

Either way, overall it would appear that the City of Jackson hit bottom several years ago and is slowing rising. I look forward to seeing how else it has improved the next time I visit.
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Old 06-28-2010, 09:46 AM
 
Location: Jackson, MS
1,008 posts, read 2,973,148 times
Reputation: 599
Quote:
Originally Posted by chalcedony View Post
I'm back in Jackson even as I type--my last brief visit was in 2007, and my last extensive visit was 2005. I'd say things have definitely changed for the better. Downtown seems to have more going on, with real potential for the area around the King Edward Hotel and Farish Street. In 2005 both of those projects seemed hopeless.

Fondren might not look that much different, but it has a safer feel to it. Back in '05 it was still seen as very emerging and a gamble for someone who wanted to renovate those homes. These days it seems very stable, and I can even see people making improvements to the homes on the west side of State Street.

One area that does NOT seem to be getting better is around Northpark Mall. I remember that seeming pretty nice in '05, but now there are quite a few vacancies, and some of the big names in the mall have been replaced with Mom and Pop shops. The mall still seemed busy, but not a premier shopping destination by any means. Is is possible that the new lifestyle center, Renaissance at Colony Park or whatever it's called, sucked a lot of life out of Northpark?

Either way, overall it would appear that the City of Jackson hit bottom several years ago and is slowing rising. I look forward to seeing how else it has improved the next time I visit.
It sounds like you made a pretty fair assessment. Yes, new malls tend to suck the life out of existing malls, especially the ones that are much older and out-of-date. It costs a lot of money to renovate a large mall, so most developers tend to build new. Unless the property owner is committed to constantly maintaining and updating every so often, older malls can't keep up with the demands of store owners. That's why I'm not a fan of malls - they make a big bang when they first open up, but over time, they become one large problem of either failing or vacant spaces. Then you are left to decide what to do with a large piece of property - most are reluctant to demolish such a large structure, but many times it is the best alternative. Either way, it's a big money pit.
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