New committee to lead redevelopment push

New committee to lead redevelopment push
The city owns this property, which formerly housed the Wolverine Worldwide factory.
City officials hope redeveloping this land could spur revitalization of the whole area. (Source: KAIT)
City officials hope redeveloping this land could spur revitalization of the whole area. (Source: KAIT)
The committee will do feasibility studies to see what this area might be right for. (Source: KAIT)
The committee will do feasibility studies to see what this area might be right for. (Source: KAIT)

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - A new committee was formed in Jonesboro this week with the goal of revitalizing the corridor between Arkansas State University and the Downtown area.

Mayor Harold Perrin made the committee recommendations to the city council Tuesday night and the council approved the recommendations.

The group of eight community leaders and city officials is called the Wolverine Property Downtown Corridor Committee.

The name comes from the 5.2-acre property that the city owns on Aggie Road, which used to house the Wolverine Worldwide factory.

The city has cleared the property and it is ready for development, which officials hope can be the start of redeveloping the entire area along Johnson Avenue and Aggie Road.

"The Aggie Road corridor has kind of been neglected over the years but it could be a key corridor to downtown for ASU students and others," said Vice President of Jonesboro Unlimited Mike Downing.

Downing serves as the chairman for the committee.

"The number one issue today for businesses is the attraction and retention of talent and so downtowns can contribute towards that and given it's the corridor between A-State and Downtown we see this is a good opportunity then," he said.

It is too early in the process for Downing to speculate on what type of businesses might be best to reach out to for the area.

"It's an opportunity for a bunch of us to get together, find out what the market feasibility could be, and determine a plan for best redeveloping that corridor," Downing said.

He said they plan to look at several ideas that have been given to city officials in the past and decide if this is the right time and place to pursue those.

The proposed bike and pedestrian trail plans are also adjacent to Aggie Road, which Downing said would also have a significant impact on what they propose.

The committee's first meeting date is not set yet.

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