HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - A North Carolina real estate developer wants to invest $10 million to turn the old Forrest County Jail and some adjacent buildings into apartments and offices.
The Landmark Group out of Winston-Salem is hoping to build the Forrest Street Lofts. It would include 60 apartments and about 7,000 square feet of office space.
Representatives with the company presented the project to Forrest County Supervisors Thursday morning.
It involves the purchase of the old jail, the adjacent women's jail and the historic Carpenters' Building for $230,000. Renovations would be financed with Section 42 Housing tax credits.
"These are tax credits that are awarded by the State of Mississippi every year to fund real estate development projects with the intention of them remaining affordable for middle class individuals here in Mississippi," said Vann Joines of The Landmark Group.
"There's some concern with regard to the Section 42 Housing and what exactly that means for the downtown area," said David Hogan, president of the Forrest County Board of Supervisors. "(Also), the purchase price is a little low in my opinion, but when you look at the full package of the total investment and their indication that they're agreeing to pay the full ad valorem taxes, the purchase price becomes a little less relevant," Hogan said.
If supervisors approve the project, an agreement could be signed in April. The Landmark Group would then have until October to secure the housing credits from the state.