State OKs $3M bond for Vidalia

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 22, 2001

VIDALIA – The State Bond Commission has approved $3 million in capital outlay money for Phase 3A of the Vidalia Landing riverfront development.

The money will be used to extend a walkway north of the Mississippi River Bridge, extend a road from south of the bridge to the site’s north entrance, and install further lighting and infrastructure.

Bonds should be sold and filling out the paperwork necessary to receive the funds should be done by the end of the year, said Sidney A. Murray, chairman of the Riverfront Authority. &uot;The project’s moving right along,&uot;&160;Murray said. Vidalia Mayor Hyram Copeland could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

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The commission, which approved the $3 million request Thursday, also approved $1.9 million and $1.58 million in capital outlay money for the project in 1999 and 2000, respectively.

A riverwalk has already been finished at Vidalia Landing, and Riverview RV Park is already operating at the property’s south end.

Construction of an amphitheater north of the Mississippi River Bridge should be finished in the first half of September, said Mike Grantham, owner of Camo Construction.

A group of doctors is now working on plans to build an outpatient surgical center at Vidalia Landing.

And Copeland has said that a 100-room hotel and a steak and seafood restaurant are expected to announce plans this fall to locate on the riverfront.

Officials have said that when Vidalia Landing is complete, it could also include condominiums, recreational fields and other attractions.

It is estimated that the development, which has been in the works since 1992, could bring 400 jobs to a parish with high unemployment.