Biloxi Housing Authority: $1.4 Million in stimulus to upgrade older properties

By Danielle Thomas - bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The Biloxi Housing Authority says $1.4 million in federal stimulus money will go a long way in helping to make its older properties like new. Officials say they're working to bring all housing up to the same standard.

Sun Coast Villa is made up of more than 100 apartments. Resident Matilda Alexander says if given the choice to stay here or relocate to one of the Biloxi Housing Authority's newer properties, most people here would move.

"Because everybody wants to sleep good at night. Everybody wants to feel comfortable," said Alexander. "These are to the stage that sooner or later they're just going to break."

The Biloxi Housing Authority said out of $.4 million in stimulus money, $900,000 will go to upgrades at Sun Coast Villa with new siding, sidewalks, appliances, sewer repairs and more.

Director Bobby Hensley said, "We want to make our older properties just as attractive as the new properties we've built and purchased since Katrina, so residents don't think that because they have been assigned to an older property, that they're being short changed. We want to make it where there is no difference."

Hensley said stimulus money is making the Housing Authority's modernization plan for its older properties a reality much sooner.

"We get money for capital improvements every year. This money is going to allow us to speed up that process so we can make these changes and these renovations for people a whole lot quicker rather than having to go over a five year period."

Biloxi Housing Authority officials plan to install appliances at Sun Coast Villa that are more energy efficient. Officials say some work will also be made at the Oakwood and Fernwood properties.

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