Time to transfer visitor center

Published 12:01 am Sunday, December 9, 2018

Approximately two decades ago when the Natchez Visitor Reception Center was conceived and built, it was a genius building.

The concept was to bring together what were then very diverse factions of the city’s tourism efforts.

At the time the official state welcome center was next to Walmart and tickets for pilgrimage house tours were sold in the former railroad depot on Canal Street.  Neither was an ideal location for their purpose.

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Now, decades after pulling together all of those forces, the future of the Natchez Visitor Reception Center looks even brighter if the city moves forward with donating the property to the National Park Service.

The city has struggled to maintain the building for many years and by all counts the physical structure of the building would be in far better hands with the National Park Service as stewards.

Natchez aldermen are expected to vote on the matter again this week to move forward legislation which, when approved in Jackson early next year, will clear the way for the change of ownership to occur.

The prospect of transferring the property is exciting as is the likelihood that the NPS will take the building to newer and better heights in the years to come.

We urge aldermen to move forward with the plan, keep the donation and legislation required to facilitate such a transaction as simple as possible to avoid messing the deal up.