Mayor Jones Gives State of the City Address - 8NEWS - WRIC | News Where You Live

Mayor Jones Gives State of the City Address

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RICHMOND (WRIC) - Mayor Dwight Jones laid out his vision for Richmond in his State of the City address Thursday night.

The theme of the night was "Revitalize RVA" and Mayor Jones addressed schools, poverty, economic development and his controversial plan to transform Shockoe Bottom.

"Richmond has never had momentum like this before," Jones said.

Jones said putting a baseball stadium, slavery memorial and other developments in Shockoe Bottom is good business.

"The alternative is a course that leaves Shockoe behind and fails to create the right conditions for the Slavery and Freedom Heritage site to succeed.  Ladies and gentlemen, that's not the cost of acting. That's the cost of delay."

Many at the state of the city agreed with the mayor's plan.

"I am totally 100 percent 1,000 percent supportive of Shockoe stadium," says Roderyck Bullock.

Others don't.

"This is not just about Richmond," says Lily Estes. "This is the history of the United States that's at risk here. This is a cheap way out."

Speaking at the newly opened Martin Luther King Middle School, Jones addressed education and pledged to fund school maintenance needs reaching almost $100 million.

"For too long in Richmond, we've accepted mediocrity. Those days are over.  Our school board is changing the status quo."

Jones also spoke about poverty, jobs and the need for the city to look toward the future.

"This is not a time to cut and paste. We need bold action if we are to realize the full benefit of this pivotal point in our city."

The mayor also talked about the economic benefits of the Washington Redskins Training Camp.

At one point, he said "the Redskins facility was about more than football and the Shockoe plan is about more than baseball."


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