JACKSON — Jackson city and business leaders are spearheading an effort to transform a five-miles stretch of road from Interstate 55 to Interstate 220 into a medical research corridor.
The Clarion-Ledger reports the Mississippi Healthcare Corridor would include a previously announced research park the University of Mississippi Medical Center plans to build at the old Farmers Market and redevelopment of Hawkins Field for medical helicopter traffic and training.
A steering committee of medical and business leaders hopes to have a master plan for developing the corridor finished in six months.
The corridor would stretch along Woodrow Wilson Avenue in North Jackson.
“This medical corridor will transform the City of Jackson,” said Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr.
Details, including the projected cost, economic impact and the number of new jobs the corridor would create, haven’t been determined, and no timetable for the project was given.
Primus Wheeler, executive director of the Jackson Medical Mall Foundation, said a report on how to do that should be finished in six months.
Duane O’Neill, executive director of the Greater Jackson Chamber Partnership, said there are no plans to ask for any public money for the effort, but local governments would need to rezone land and upgrade infrastructure as needed.
Wheeler added there are a number of vacant buildings along the proposed corridor that could be revamped for use.