Delta Streets Academy proposed renovation

An artist’s rendering shows what the exterior of Delta Streets Academy’s building on George Street would look like following a renovation.

Delta Streets Academy is making progress toward renovating one of its buildings.

The all-boys school for students in grades 7-12 operates out of a building on East Church Street and also owns the building on George Street that formerly housed Delta Chevrolet.

The proposed renovation for the George Street building would cost between $5.5 million and $6 million, said T. Mac Howard, the school’s executive director.

Included in the renovation would be eight classrooms and a lab, a combined auditorium and cafeteria, a  kitchen, a conference room and offices for the administrative staff and counselors.

In addition, a gym, outfitted with three locker rooms, would be built on the football field, Howard said.

If the George Street building were to be renovated, it would serve students in middle and high school, Howard said. The Church Street building would serve elementary students.

The two main sources of revenue for the project are a private donor in Texas, who learned about Delta Streets through a podcast, and new market tax credits, Howard said.

The private donor gave the school $2.8 million last May, which really helped push the project foward, Howard said.

The new market tax credits are part of a program of the U.S. Department of Treasury. It provides individuals and corporate donors tax credits against their federal income in exchange for their investment in a low-income community.  

Howard said he’ll learn more about allocations from the tax credit program this May.

Even with those two main sources of revenue, Howard said about $300,000 to $400,000 will still be needed from the community for the project in order to avoid debt.

Donations to Delta Streets Academy may be made online by visiting the school’s website, deltastreetsacademy.org/give, or by mailing a check to  P.O. Box 9895, Greenwood, MS 38930.

Given a variety of factors, Howard said it’s unknown when construction could possibly start.

He did say that the school’s renovated building would be an asset for the whole community, suggesting that the new gym could be open for youth on weeknights and that churches could use the auditorium on Sundays.

Howard said no plans have been made one way or the other to postpone the school’s upcoming fundraiser amid the coronavirus outbreak. The fundraiser is scheduled for April 24-25.

Contact Gerard Edic at 581-7239 or gedic@gwcommonwealth.com.

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