HomeNewsWork stoppage on Hub City Central allows for tweaks to plans

Work stoppage on Hub City Central allows for tweaks to plans

By Brandon Shields

Managing editor

The Hub City Central project has hit a delay because of weather, but that delay has allowed those making decisions about the project to adjust some of the plans for the complex.

Hub City Central is the name Jackson-Madison County Schools leadership has given the combined area that will house the future site of the JMCSS central offices and administration in the old Madison Academic/Jackson High building, Oman Arena and the future football stadium for Jackson Central-Merry High School.

Dirt-movers began doing work in November the same afternoon JMCSS had a ceremonial groundbreaking for the project.

A couple weeks after that, the district accepted bids for other work related to the project to be done.

“Dirt has been moved, but we hit a snag with the weather when we got all the snow and ice in January, and the weather has been pretty wet every week since then,” said Tina Mercer, who’s serving as a consultant and liaison between the district leadership and Crocker Construction, who is the developer selected to coordinate the project. “So what we have right now is a really muddy swimming pool because rain is keeping that area wet, and when it gets close enough to being dry enough to continue the work, we get rain for a few more days again.”

After the bid for the dirt work, all bids for the project were rejected as the district and Crocker Construction had decided to go back and look at any adjustments they wanted to make.

Those that had put in the bids were informed of the rejections in early February.

“We knew work would stop once the ground got as saturated as it did, and that gave us some time to look at things and some changes we wanted to make,” said Ricky Catlett, the deputy superintendent of JMCSS over operations.

The delay over the last month-and-a-half has pushed the opening of the stadium before the end of football season in jeopardy, but the turf and everything for track and field should be able to be set in place this summer or early fall, which would hopefully make the facility’s opening in time for the 2025 track and field season still a possibility.

“The biggest thing we want to do is to make sure it’s ready to open before it opens,” said Jason Compton, the JMCSS Board member who’s the chair of the athletics committee. “This is a big investment for the district, and we want to make sure everything is done right including the opening, so we shouldn’t rush it.”

Brandon Shields, brandon@jacksonpost.news

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