South Gloster looks for branding opportunity

TUPELO – Mention “Barnes Crossing” and most people immediately identify the mall area.
But what comes to mind when “South Gloster” is mentioned?
Members of the South Gloster Business task force, along with several city officials, had a planning session Wednesday to map out a long-range plan for the road that stretches from Main Street at Crosstown to the Verona city limits.
They identified problems, talked about solutions and offered ideas about how to best “brand” itself.
“We want to establish a mission statement and find out where we want to go and what we want to do,” said task force chairman Clay Short.
And while the “South Gloster is Alive” motto has been revived, task force members said other terminology was preferable.
Advising the public to “rediscover” South Gloster and talking about how it is “evolving” with new businesses and the Highway 6 bypass paints a better picture, they said.
“We’ve got an economic engine in North Mississippi Medical Center, but we’re not quite sure how to take advantage of that,” said City Planner Pat Falkner.
“South Gloster has many great individual entities – they just need to be put together,” said B.J. Teal, the city’s director of development services. “We need to brand it some way so that when you say ‘South Gloster,’ people see something.”
To help South Gloster identify itself, Judy Phillips of the John C. Stennis Institute for Government at Mississippi State University will conduct an economic study of the area and of North Mississippi Medical Center. And it will do the study for free.
“We know the hospital is the anchor for the South Gloster district,” Short said. “So we want to be able to quantify that. The Stennis Institute will do that for us. We want to define who we are … we’re looking at branding, but before we do that, we need to know who we are and who we can be and this study will help us determine that.”
The results of the study should be available by January, and a meeting of the task force and the general membership of the South Gloster Business District association will gather to discuss the findings, Short said.

Contact Dennis Seid at (662) 678-1578 or dennis.seid@djournal.com.

Dennis Seid/NEMS Daily Journal