Biloxi wanting to rezone part of Highway 90

By Danielle Thomas – bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - After years of "for sale" signs on thousands of acres of vacant land, Biloxi landowners are looking for a change along Highway 90.

Re-zoning property between Rodenburg and McDonnell Avenues as waterfront would give investors the option to bring residential, commercial and amusement developments here or make the area what Council member Lucy Denton calls more tourism friendly.

"I think that we're trying so hard to get more businesses to Biloxi; our economy needs more," Denton said. "The casino revenue has been down, and we can't get a lot of things done in Biloxi because our budget is so tight. So maybe by turning this back to waterfront, it will encourage more developers to come in."

But Denton doesn't want economic development at any cost. She says if the zoning changes.. don't expect to see any high rise condos.

Lucy Denton said, "My only real concern and I'm not an expert on this at all, but we are very good neighbors with Keesler Air Force Base. And this is the flight pattern, so we would not be in favor of anything that would interfere with Keesler and any negative impact."

Waterfront zoning also allows for gaming, but anyone wanting to build a casino along this stretch would first have to win the approval of the State Gaming Commission.

"I know that it's already been before the Gaming Commission once, and this area was turned down," Denton said. "So unless the Gaming Commission made some changes, I don't see that happening."

Land owners are asking that both sides of Highway 90 from Rodenburg to McDonnell be rezoned waterfront but not the Sand Beach. Council member Lucy Denton said the area was zoned waterfront in the past.

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