Blighted Biloxi buildings have a date with a wrecking ball

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The empty light blue Hancock Bank building on Highway 90 in Biloxi is about to be demolished.  Hancock Bank executives told the Biloxi City Council the blighted building will be knocked down, and its foundation will be torn up as soon as next month.

Just behind that building is a two story office building owned by the Copeland estate.  You may remember it as the old Catholic Diocese office.  Nobody moved back into the building once Katrina tore through it.  The Reynoir Street complex fell into disrepair.  On Tuesday, the Copeland group agreed to knock down the building.  The demolition may begin next week.

In recent weeks, Biloxi's community development office told the owners of several vacant properties around the city either clean up their Katrina mess, or get rid of their eyesores.  On Tuesday, eight property owners discussed their property plans with the Biloxi City Council.

The bank, the office building, an old movie theater on Highway 90 near the Biloxi Strip, and a two story seafood office building on Bayview Avenue will all be demolished.  The city will work with other property owners on ways they can restore what the hurricane tore apart.

Terrance Friday talked with city leaders about the progress they're making to remove Katrina's blight.  You'll see his story on WLOX News at 6:00.