Neighborhoods sprouting north of I-10

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - It's a trend that began before Katrina: People moving north of I-10.

And the hurricane only strengthened that movement, as home owners looked for higher ground and cheaper insurance.

Today, there are numerous neighborhoods popping up north of the interstate.

Walker Farm is one such new neighborhood north of I-10. Homes there are 2,00 square feet and up, with prices starting in the 180's.

"We give you that country feeling. You've got the rolling hills, the farm fencing. It just makes you feel like you're in the country a little more. We're minutes away from the equestrian center. That's how Walker Farm got its name actually," said Annie Adams of Adams Homes.

The relaxing, rural lifestyle is part of the appeal. But the more practical reality driving folks north is post-Katrina insurance.

"Insurance rates have gone through the roof. And we're seeing people migrate north of the interstate simply because they need the purchasing power with the lower insurance rates," Adams explained. "When you're taking another $1,000 a year or more in insurance costs, they're not going to be able to purchase as much for their money south of the interstate as they can north."

Tradition is the ambitious planned community conceived in 1999, with a ground breaking in 2006.

Construction of a new community center, complete with a YMCA, community pool and coffee shop-cafe is certain to attract the interest of more home buyers.

Even in a sluggish economy, Tradition has doubled the number of homes in the past 18 months.

"It's a different way of living here. You're not just buying a house, you are buying a way of life. And that comes from all the planning elements we put into place so painstakingly over the past several years," said Brynn Joachim with Tradition.

Improved transportation has certainly helped accommodate all this growth to the north. Case in point: The new Highway 67, which brings the cities just minutes away from country living.

"You can't beat it. You can be at the casinos, Keesler, The Promenade in D'Iberville in no time," said a smiling Annie Adams.

Along with the improved transportation which we mentioned, the recent expansion of water and sewer service into the unincorporated areas is also fueling that growth.

Expect even more subdivisions and planned community developments to locate north of the interstate.

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