By WLOX Staff
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Gulfport's efforts to rebuild from Hurricane Katrina took a huge step forward Wednesday as Mayor Brent Warr signed a $17 million contract to rebuild the Small Craft Harbor.
The contract was awarded to Innovative Builders of Bay St. Louis, and is for completion of the bulkhead, dredging and yacht basin.
"This is a very important day for our city. The fruits of the hard work we are doing now will be obvious at our harbor for generations to come," Warr said.
Warr praised the efforts of Councilwoman Libby Milner-Roland for pushing the project forward, and Broaddus & Associates, the firm managing the project.
Innovative Builders has already built a reputation for quality work in the city of Gulfport.
"These guys have worked hard on all of our piers and we've seen what great work they do," Warr said. "The harbor is one of our most important projects, and I'm sure they will do everything they can to make it one of the finest harbors in the South."
Bill Mitchell, an engineer from the firm Brown & Mitchell, which also is working on the project, praised the efforts of Harbor Master D.J. Zigler.
"There were a lot of different things that went into this and there were many things that D.J. added that will make it a more user-friendly harbor," Mitchell said. "I know that if he felt better he'd be here with us today, but I think we should all tip our hat to him anyway for such a great contribution."