City’s decisions to move forward with sports complex, new escalator good ones

Published 6:00 am Saturday, September 9, 2017

This week was full of big announcements for the city of Vicksburg’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen as they took the first steps to making the sports complex a reality and began the process of making needed repairs to the Vicksburg Convention Center.

The board Thursday authorized city clerk Walter Osborne to advertise for proposals from engineers to design and prepare plans and specifications for a proposed access road to the complex, and approved a resolution to hire the Jackson law firm of Butler Snow to prepare the bond documents to apply for the bonds.

Preliminary estimates put the total cost of both projects at about $30 million — $20 million for the sports complex and $10 million for the road.

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Tuesday, the board approved an $118,500 contract with Jackson-based Cook Farr Douglas Lemons Architects & Engineers to prepare designs and specifications to replace the convention center escalator, upgrade its elevator and repair a retaining wall at the convention center.

Both of these projects will have great impacts on bettering the future of Vicksburg once they are completed.

Sports complexes like the one planned — with nine multi-use fields that can be used for soccer, baseball or softball; championship fields for baseball, soccer and softball, all made of synthetic turf, as well as a splash pad, ropes course, walking track and other recreation activities — are economic drivers for a town.

They attract tournaments and events to town that bring people who spend money at hotels and restaurants where a new tax will pay for the very complex they are enjoying. 

The VCC is an important part of downtown Vicksburg. Not only does it host Miss Mississippi every year, but also many other events throughout the year.

We commend the city of Vicksburg for making these investments and others into the city, while at the same time announcing Thursday evening that they will not be raising taxes this year.