HATTIESBURG, Miss. — Southern Bancorp, Inc., a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), last week announced its involvement in the Calico Station development, a forthcoming community gathering place in downtown Hattiesburg. A groundbreaking event was held on Wednesday, Sept. 21 announcing the start of construction on the renovation project.
“We are proud to be the primary lender for this downtown development project, which will bring together Hattiesburg’s history and future into a state-of-the-art communal gathering place,” said Chris Hester, Southern Bancorp’s Hattiesburg Market President.
Calico Station will be the eventual product of a full-scale renovation of historic Hattiesburg grounds; the site was originally built in 1925 as a meat processing plant, and would later become an antique mall. The 10,000-square-foot building will be refurbished and recreated to become a hub for the downtown community, featuring three floors of workspaces, a food hall, merchandise space, a bar and lounge, and a pool deck.
Southern Bancorp Bank and Southern Bancorp Community Partners, the CDFI’s nonprofit arm, are serving as the primary financers of the project. Collaborating its two entities together provides not only capital to help fund the $1.67 million construction costs, but also the stability and flexibility of two CDFIs working together in lockstep.
“As a Community Development Financial Institution, we want to make just as big a difference for our communities as we do for our consumers – because we know how much the two go hand in hand,” Hester said. “It’s with this mindset that we strive to not only ensure that everyone has access to responsible and responsive financial services, but also that the communities in which we live are stronger, provide opportunities for all, and are always moving forward. It is our hope that this new community space will check all of those boxes for Hattiesburg, and then some.”
Construction on the facility is underway and is expected to be completed in around 12 months. K.Moye Design & Development is the site’s developer, and Davis Premier Group is serving as property manager.