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Published on June 20, 2024
Tampa City Council Approves Renovation of Historic Jackson Rooming House Amid Preservation UrgencySource: Google Street View

The Tampa City Council has officially approved plans to renovate the historic Jackson Rooming House, a significant African American landmark constructed in 1901, reported ABC Action News. This comes amid concerns from the Jackson House Foundation that, with the stormy season upon us, time is of the essence to save the deteriorating structure.

According to Bay News 9, Carolyn Collins, the chairwoman of the Jackson House Foundation expressed urgency in securing emergency funds for the building's stabilization. "I truly feel that we’re going to survive this one on the edge,” Collins said, “And there may be some request on some stabilization money, not a detailed stabilization that costs millions but an emergency stabilization because, having gone through what we’ve gone through the last few years, the house is in very bad second shape."

The house not only provided lodging for Black travelers during segregation but also hosted prominent figures like Ray Charles and Ella Fitzgerald. With nearly $5 million raised through various channels, the community aims to restore its former glory. However, work has yet to begin, pending a crucial agreement that would provide necessary space around the property. "We are hoping we’ll be able to finalize this last document with the Accardis. They sign off, the Jackson House signs off and all of that is done,” Collins told Bay News 9.

Meanwhile, in a reminder of the threats posed by severe weather and the urgency of the preservation efforts for the Jackson House, a separate but similarly named residence in Jackson, Michigan, was damaged by strong storms, as detailed by WLNS. No injuries were reported as, crews now face the task of removing an uprooted tree to assess the damage.

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor emphasized the importance of preserving history, stating, "That’s a lesson you know that we have to preserve our history and we need to ensure that we don’t just go looking into preservation once a structure is collapsing," in a statement obtained by Bay News 9. With the threat of inclement weather impacting both historic and residential properties, the call for timely action to protect and restore structures steeped in historical significance has never been clearer.

Tampa-Real Estate & Development