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WLBT’s Howard Ballou Reports on the Transformation of Hidden Oak Apartments, Jackson, MS

JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) –

West Jackson neighborhoods have had their share of problems with crime and dilapidated structures. There is a transformation underway and in this Taking Back Our Neighborhoods report, one apartment complex has gone from eyesore to eye candy, much to the delight of residents and the community.

Before it was Hidden Oak Apartments, it was Courtyard Square.  A resident, Cynthia, who didn’t want her full name used or her face shown on camera, remembers it well.

“Well, before, when it was Courtyard Square, it was not painted, roof was bad, windows were bad,” Said Cynthia. “If there were any screens to any of them, at all. The A/C heating units were in disrepair. The electronic gate was not even up and running.”

And with the disrepair, came drug dealers, prostitutes and other crime.

An Atlanta, Georgia investor, named Doug Rutherford, said he and his wife, Denise, became interested in the property, took a leap of faith, and 500-thousand dollars later, transformed Courtyard Square into this appealing habitat re-named Hidden Oak Apartments.

The Rutherfords have also purchased an abandoned property across the street and cleaned it up. Cynthia says all this is having a positive impact on the community.

“I think it is,” said Cynthia. “The tenants seem to really enjoy it. They can tell the difference. They’ve all made several comments about it.”

One of those tenants is relative newcomer, Cole Williams, a Mississippi College School of Law student.

“It’s great,” said Williams. “I mean, there were some issues with the roads around here and I’ve seen that the city’s done a great job even since I’ve moved in.”

“I love my neighbors,” Williams added. “We all get along great and there’s no one here that causes any trouble whatsoever. You can definitely tell that the infrastructure is coming back.”

And that’s good news for long time residents like Cynthia, who say comprehensive background checks and prompt service are putting smiles on everyone’s faces.

“So, it’s good to see that they love their homes, too,” added Cynthia.

Rent for the Hidden Oak Apartments begin at 495-dollars per month.