A change is coming to the city of Grambling that can come as early as the end of the year.
Once covered with trees, the curve on Stadium Drive is now overwhelmed with tractors and construction as they are in the ending stages of clearing shrubs for a new gated community that will consist of 34 two- and three-bedroom houses and one office building.
Focused on individuals earning an income of approximately $22,800, city officials say that the newly constructed gated community will play a huge part in growing the city of Grambling.
“This development will increase our citizenry, which means more property taxes for the city, more water, sewage and garbage customers,” said Mayor Edward Jones.
In the 2010 census Grambling reported 4,949 citizens, which is short of the 5,000 required to keep city status.
Funded through a $7.1 million competitive grant, the project required developers to bid on the property that had to meet a list of standards.
“You have various developers in the state of Louisiana and there is a pool of funds and all of these developers have to compete for the pool of funds, and the state has a certain criteria,” said Jones. “For example, this project had to be near a university and have a community center. The more the developer meets the criteria, the more points they receive and win the project.”
Won by Stogan Development, Jones says that they expect the building process to begin in June and will be complete by the end of the year.
Besides its million dollar cost, the gated community will hold a special name as the development will be dedicated to former Grambling Mayor Andrew J. Mansfield for his contributions to the city as its second mayor during 1977 through 1981. Mansfield will be the second mayor honored with a housing community, the first being B.T. Woodard.
With the building of the community, this is one of several improvements as city officials have spent over $170,000 on nine acres of land for future projects, such as a hotel, restaurants and a bank.
The city has also agreed to build sidewalks and repave West College Avenue to R.W.E. Jones, a $600,000 construction project. Mayor Jones says the city is working hard to advance and is focused on moving Grambling forward.