Plans for Jackson Avenue in the Historic Westside are moving forward as part of the first phase of the HUNDRED Plan in Action.
The HUNDRED (Historic Urban Neighborhood Design Redevelopment) Plan was developed in 2016 as a plan for community-led investment in the Historic Westside. UNLV and the Historic Westside community partnered together to develop the plan, which focuses on community, identity, economy, housing and civic investments. The HUNDRED Plan include “8 Big Moves” to transform the Westside into a vibrant neighborhood:
1) Welcome to the historic Westside
2) Revitalize historic Jackson Street
3) Small Steps: Vacant No More
4) Establish Washington Live
5) Repairing the Edges;
6) Establish Compete & Safe Streets
7) Reclaim James Gay Park; and
8) Moulin Rouge Entertainment District.
The “Big Moves,” together with the summary of public and stakeholder feedback, form the foundation for development of the Hundred Plan in Action. The eight movies were organized to focus investment in three catalytic areas in the Historic Westside, and represent the first phase of the HUNDRED Plan in Action:
WASHINGTON AVE. + D STREET
WASHINGTON AVE. + H STREET
Historic Jackson Avenue once served as the Main Street of the Historic Westside. Home to a variety of businesses – from hotels and entertainment venues, to community services – it served as the primary place to gather. The city is working on several projects on Jackson Avenue to provide neighborhood amenities and community services including:
Reimagined James Gay Park
The city is planning to reopen James Gay Park with vertical and container farming, community gathering spaces and other amenities. This project was born out of the original HUNDRED Plan calling for reclaiming James Gay Park with mixed-use development, and the identification of a need for healthy food options. The project will help address food insecurity and establish food resiliency by creating a local growing operation that creates jobs and educational opportunities, provides fresh food to local residents via a new co-op, and allows the community to export produce to local restaurants and businesses to bring in income. Housing and public space could also be incorporated into the development.
The city recently received $25,000 from the Environmental Protection Agency via Clark County to support master planning for the James Gay Park site. The city also received a $500,000 allocation in Capital Improvement Project funds to support the plan development. The city was also awarded Local Foods Local Places Technical Assistance for 2021, a grant that provides technical assistance to develop a co-op food model in as well as a commitment from Enterprise Community Partners and Schwab to support co-op development.
Holistic Wellness Center
A community-focused holistic health and wellness center is being planned on Jackson Avenue to complement existing traditional health care providers and address persistent health disparities within communities of color. Mental health, holistic care and preventative health would all be addressed within the center. The city is planning for the development of a center at 400 Jackson Ave. The building would host retail space on the ground level, and health care uses and community spaces on the remaining levels. The city has allocated $1.6 million in Community Development Block Grant funds to pay for design of the center and address environmental issues. PGAL has been selected as the architect - the firm also designed the Las Vegas Municipal Courthouse in downtown Las Vegas. The project is planned to open in 2023 pending funding.
Community Events and Programming
The city is facilitating a number of community events and activities, after taking a break during this past year due to the pandemic. The first event of 2021 - called Take Flight - occurred on May 15, 2021. It was a celebration of the HUNDRED Plan taking flight, complete with mural artists, events for kids and community information. The city is also planning a public event in fall of 2021 to mark one-year implementation of the HUNDRED Plan. The city allocated $50,000 to assist with these community events.
Making Jackson Avenue a Complete & Safe Street
The city has plans under way for improvements to Jackson Avenue from C Street to H Street to improve the pedestrian environment and aesthetics. Improvements will include 15-foot sidewalks with shade trees; upgraded lighting for both the roadway and the pedestrian environment; and curb extensions at intersections to make pedestrian crossings safer and shorter. The project is in the design phase and should go out to bid by the end of 2021 with completion by the end of 2022. The city received $5 million from RTC Gas Tax for this project.
Helping Community Help Community & Addressing Vacant Spaces
The city has been working with local communities of faith who own land in the Westside, as well as local property owners, to help support their efforts to build new housing in the Historic Westside. This is being done through a series of meetings with city staff working with churches and other interested local parties to provide step-by-step technical support on how to develop a property. This includes assistance on understanding zoning and what can be done with property, how to design a building, pull permits and more. The Nevada Preservation Foundation received $44,700 of funding from the Centennial Commission to create a business plan to support restoration of historic properties.
The city is also working with local lending institutions to provide training and support services - as well as access to capital - for local residents interested in becoming business entrepreneurs in the Historic Westside. This effort includes exploring new ways for the city to work with these institutions to support entrepreneurialism in communities of color, as well as developing new programs and incentives to support this work. City staff had initial conversation with financial institutions earlier this year. More meetings to work on various aspects of the program are being scheduled for this year and beyond.