Bulldozers dig in to improve Bayou Auguste

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Usually, a bulldozer rolling through a marsh is a bad sign. However, in Bayou Auguste, it's progress.

"Today is the first day of construction on the restoration of the Bayou Auguste green way. So far, it's been a year and a half in the making," said Britton Jones of the Gulf Coast Community Design Studio.

The Gulf Coast Community Design Studio has been working to clean up and restore the Bayou with help from Biloxi city officials, schools, and volunteers

"The first part is excavating the stream bank edge. And then, we'll be coming back with a bulldozer and even shovels by hand and doing more of the micro-grading so we can create more areas for the native types of marsh species to live," said Jones.

The construction portion will actually creates a lot of damage as the bank is dug out.  To protect the delicate environment, volunteers are laying out boom like structures to keep sediment and mud from going into the water and marshes. Throughout the project different groups of volunteers have stepped up to help in the restoration.  The latest team included a group of lawyers from the Butler Snow Firm.

"We're expected to actually lend our time and effort to serve low income communities, to serve the environmental impact and that sort of thing, so really it's a good opportunity for us," said volunteer Jet Hollingsworth.

The construction portion should last a few months.  Once completed, the Design Studio will look at securing grants to add piers, walking trails, and more.

The restoration project is being funded through various grants.

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