Vacant federal office building could convert to mixed-use space

JACKSON — The James O. Eastland Federal Building in downtown Jackson may be converted into apartments and commercial space.

The Clarion-Ledger reports that developers say the project would cost $20 million.

The 115,000-square-foot space has sat vacant since Aug. 1, 2011, following the opening of the new federal courthouse.

Built in 1934 by the Jackson-based architectural firm Hull and Malvaney, the courthouse replaced an earlier one built on the same property. The building also housed a post office until the post office relocated in 1988.

The building is also home to three-panel mural unveiled in 1940, depicting a white family in front of a plantation-style home along with faceless black people picking cotton. The judges of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordered the mural covered years later.

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