Cash-strapped museum organizer inks new lease with city, seeks more funding

Published 11:05 pm Friday, December 9, 2011

Nearly depleted of cash after more than six years of soliciting donations and chasing grants, the unfinished transportation museum in the old Levee Street Depot inked a new lease with the city under a new name that ties its rent to financial success and how private sector money can fund it.

For the next 12 months, the facility — renamed The Old Depot Museum — will pay the City of Vicksburg $250 a month, a rent to be reviewed between the two parties based on financial stability, according to the lease signed Friday by Mayor Paul Winfield and chief developer Lamar Roberts.

“Consideration will be given to use an increase in revenue towards obtaining and generating new exhibits as well,” it reads.

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The new corporation, formerly known as Vicksburg Transportation Museum Inc., will pay all museum personnel, including the director position.

In 2001, the city purchased the former Yazoo & Mississippi Valley Railroad Station on Levee Street and property surrounding it for about $295,000.