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Jackson, MS

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2020

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: Part of wider efforts to beautify the South Jackson neighborhood, this project activated several vacant lots, turning them into community gardens, creative market spaces and pocket parks. The revitalization initiative also added seating and landscaping at a bus stop, painted a mural and made repairs to housing subdivision entrances. Community members volunteered to help with the efforts. In recent years, South Jackson has struggled with business closures and vacant housing. In a letter to the community, Coalition Executive Director Bennie Hudson wrote, We must do something about this for ourselves as elders and adults, but even more for our children and youth. In the future, project organizers hope to set up a homeowners association for the neighborhood to support ongoing maintenance and future improvements.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Grantees

Jackson, MS

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Engaging residents in vibrant public places

Description: To recast public spaces for people rather than vehicle traffic, the City of Jackson launched an Open Streets initiative. First, the City installed a parklet -- a small park that fits in the footprint of a parking space. The parklet is just one component of us trying to make Congress Street more pedestrian-friendly. This street was a very automobile-oriented street. It was very traffic heavy. It was very busy, urban designer Travis Crabree said. The City painted a mural onsite. To demarcate the space, project organizers also painted vibrant blue dots along the street, demarking it as a place to gather. Additionally, the City purchased picnic tables and flexible furniture, which it set out in Smith Park. Local organizations -- such as the Parks and Recreation Department -- can now use the furniture for downtown events.

Jackson, MS

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Trails

Description: The City of Jackson is working to develop the Museum Trail -- a four-mile, multi-use path designed to improve community health and wellness, connect areas of interest within the community and promote active transportation. Building on this work, the Jackson Heart Foundation improved wayfinding along the corridor by installed railhead and mile markers. Organizers say the signage helps visitors understand where the trail begins and ends and provides them with information about ongoing work to improve the path. Volunteers also created a mural at the trail's entrance. And to promote the trail, project organizers launched a new website and offered branded tote bags for donors.

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AARP Mississippi State Office

141 Township Avenue
Suite 302
Ridgeland, MS 39157
United States

Phone: 866-554-5382
Fax: 601-898-5429
Email: [email protected]