Change Of Venue For Local Sportsplex

With a 4 to 1 vote, Ocean Springs aldermen rescinded their June 3rd decision to build a new multimillion dollar sportsplex in a residential neighborhood.

"The residents in my ward are upset over the traffic lights and the noise conditions that this sports complex is going to bring. And they are willing to hire legality and take us to court and hold the project up. So my estimation the best thing to do rather than waiting three or four years in get the project and go out to Highway 57 which we own," said ward 6 alderman John Gill.

The aldermen voted to go back to the original plan of building the sportsplex on 124 acres of property at the intersection of Highways 57 and 90.

The city purchased that land almost six years ago, but never developed it because of wetlands concerns.

The land condition hasn't changed, but Alderman Danny Jalanivich says some of the attitudes have, so the city should be able to develop the sportsplex.

"We've got people in state agencies that are now willing to work with us, and not only that. We've brought some more valuable property, marshlands and some other property that we can use for mitigation that the state agencies really want to get their hands on. So it's a win-win situation for everybody now," said alderman-at-large Danny Jalanivich.

So now that a permanent location has been decided, there is still more work to be done in order to fast forward into a future that has been on hold for nearly six years.

Jalanivich said the new plans will be sent to state agencies for review, and after permission is granted, the city will apply for permits and will hopefully have them within three or four months.

Also in the meeting, Aldermen also voted to reverse the no protest bond issue, which would mean residents would not get the opportunity to vote on the location of the new facility.

Jalanivich said the issue would perhaps be presented for residents to vote on in the August.