Economic Development in Ridgeland

Rdgeland is continuing to move forward with the City Center project, which will include a new City Hall and a community greenspace. Plans are nearly complete for a small portion of the 25-acre site located on Highway 51 between School Street and the Natchez Trace.

“We’re very excited about moving this project forward to help establish a centralized campus for Ridgeland government,” said Mayor Gene McGee said. “Everything that goes on this site will be special and will improve our community.” Although the master plan is malleable at this point, the City Center site could ultimately include a performing arts center, a civic meeting hall, a museum and a private development area for retail businesses and offices. The Mayor anticipates that construction of the new City Hall building will begin by the end of 2018.

In April 2017, Ridgeland hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for the Lake Harbour Drive Extension project. A new four-lane divided roadway will be constructed, extending Lake Harbour Drive from Highway 51 to Highland Colony Parkway. The project includes the construction of around 0.8 miles of roadway. Encompassing the project is the extension of the existing multiuse trail alongside Lake Harbour Drive. The new roadway will cross the railroad at-grade, follow the southern border of Freedom Ridge Park, cross Interstate 55 with a bridge and connect with Highland Colony Parkway, south of Christ Life Church.

The extension of Lake Harbour Drive from Highway 51 will provide a critical east-west corridor, greatly enhancing transportation in Ridgeland, said Mayor McGee. The roadway, he noted, will help reduce traffic in the Jackson Street area. Additionally, it will extend the multiuse trail system. Currently, there is no road connecting the two highways. Upon the project’s completion, motorists will be able to travel from Highland Colony Parkway into Rankin County, he added. The extension is expected to be completed by the latter part of next year.

A box culvert replacement under the Canadian National Railway will be the initial phase of the project. The total estimated cost is $27 million with funding from federal, state, county and local sources. Federal funds for the project, totaling $14.8 million, are appropriated through the Mississippi Department of Transportation.

The Lake Harbour Drive/Spillway Road resurfacing project also was recently announced by the city. The roadway will be resurfaced from Northpark Drive to Breakers Lane. Traffic signals also will be upgraded. The contractor estimates starting the project in the spring of 2018.

Lake Harbour Drive is one of the critical transportation corridors through Ridgeland, utilized by citizens who shop, live and do business off the roadway, and by those traveling into Madison County from Rankin County, the Mayor said. Resurfacing Lake Harbour Drive will ensure smooth travel for motorists on the heavily traveled portion for years, he noted. “Maintaining our roads and keeping them in their best condition continues to be a top priority in Ridgeland.”

The project is valued at $2,140,000. Federal funds for the project, totaling $1,712,000, are appropriated through the Mississippi Department of Transportation. Ridgeland will provide $428,000 in matching funds.

Lake Harbour Drive consists of five lanes from Northpark Drive to Old Canton Road. The roadway becomes four lanes with landscaped medians and turnouts between Old Canton Road and Harbor Drive. Lake Harbour Drive’s name changes to Spillway Road at the intersection with Harbor Drive. Striped medians replace landscaped medians between Harbor Drive and Breakers Lane. At signaled intersections, in-pavement vehicle detection systems will be replaced with video vehicle detection equipment. The length of roadway to be resurfaced is 1.3 miles.

Recently, the City of Ridgeland and the City of Jackson announced the East County Line Road resurfacing project. County Line Road lies at the border of the City of Ridgeland and Madison County and the City of Jackson. The roadway will be resurfaced from Ridgewood Road to South Wheatley Street.

By Interlocal Agreement with Jackson, Ridgeland will manage the project, conforming to Ridgeland’s design and construction standards. Jackson and Ridgeland will share the cost of the project evenly, with the Madison County Board of Supervisors pledging $675,000 for Ridgeland’s portion of the project. The project’s valued at $1.35 million. The City of Jackson secured the other $675,000 for the project through general funds. “This is a perfect example of cities and counties working together to improve our transportation system,” Mayor McGee said.

Fiber technology and infrastructure have been available in Ridgeland for several years now and the reach of this premium service is expanding. “We intend for Ridgeland to always be on the cutting-edge with technology,” Mayor McGee said. “We realized long ago that the internet plays a critical role in growing our economy. Enhancing our network of fiber infrastructure including fiber-to-the-home encourages the creation of home-based businesses and provides a better start for entrepreneurs. Fiber also helps existing businesses to grow and attracts new businesses to Ridgeland.”

The goal of the City of Ridgeland is to continue growing our economy with opportunities for strong business development, said Mayor McGee. “Achieving our goals will allow us to maintain a high standard of living and quality of life and keep our taxes low.”