Market construction behind schedule

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 31, 1999

The city’s new farmer’s market is slightly behind schedule, but Mayor Larry L. “Butch” Brown is confident it will be open for farmers by October.

As Ransom Construction was renovating of the old SuperStore building, turning it into an open-air farmer’s market, workers discovered two problems.

Despite an inspection that declared the building asbestos-free, some asbestos was found on the front of the building. The city will work with officials from St. Mary Catholic Church, which owns the building, to determine who will pay for the abatement.

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City Attorney Walter Brown said the city’s contract with St. Mary, which calls for $1,500 a month rent, also requires the church to be responsible for abatement and demolition of the other half of the property.

The mayor said the city will work out an agreement with the church to solve the problem. “We don’t anticipate any problems,” he said.

Also, demolition workers damaged part of one corner of the building, which for now is preventing continued work on the restrooms for the new marketplace, said architect Johnny Waycaster.

The original completion date for the Main Street Marketplace was set for mid-September. “We will still be open in October,” the mayor said.

The farmer’s market is a joint project by the city, Alcorn State University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

ASU students will staff the market.

When the market opens, it will be part of the WIC/Farmer’s Market Nutrition program, which gives vouchers to those who participate in the Women, Infant and Child program to buy fresh fruits and vegetables at the farmer’s market.