Long Beach Aldermen looking to revive harbor - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Long Beach Aldermen looking to revive harbor

Engineers with Brown Mitchell & Alexander went before Long Beach aldermen Monday to present some recommendations for the harbor. Engineers with Brown Mitchell & Alexander went before Long Beach aldermen Monday to present some recommendations for the harbor.
LONG BEACH, MS (WLOX) -

One of the hardest hit areas by Hurricane Isaac was the harbor in Long Beach. City leaders were already planning an expansion of the harbor expansion, but now they're adding a revitalization project to the plans.

There are varying opinions as to exactly what should be done. One thing that everyone seems to agree on however, is that something needs to be done soon.

"We have some areas that have continued to get damaged by storms, many times severe damage," Mayor Billy Skellie said. "So we have some decisions about how we do this concept and will it be some inclusion in taking care of some of what might need to be mitigated on the existing harbor."

Right now, the existing harbor bares the scars of yet another natural disaster. Ripped decks, crumbling pavement and other damage beyond repair. It's a setback in the expansion plans, no doubt, and there's no time to waste.

Engineers with Brown Mitchell & Alexander went before the aldermen Monday to present some recommendations for the harbor.

"What we wanted to impress upon the aldermen and a couple of members of the port commission that were here, is that we are now ready to move into the master plan phase," Bill Mitchell said. "We're going to start costing out some of the improvements. Then bring those numbers back to them for more detail. So not only will they have some of the concepts, but some costs to go along with those concepts."

Some of the proposed ideas were to enhance the existing harbor, rather than start from scratch. Expand Cleveland Avenue to help with traffic congestion and possibly relocate the Yacht Club to the south end of Cleveland.

The pilot ideas have city leaders split, but the common goal is to bring the Long Beach Harbor back to life.

"I hope to see a successful plan that's agreed upon and an improved harbor. It's an economic engine for the community and for the area. For Harrison County also," Skellie said.

The project plans presented Monday have been in the works since March. They focused on parking congestion, traffic on the east side and beautification as a whole. Once a master plan is approved by the city and the port commission, the plan will still need higher levels of approval before moving forward.

Copyright 2012 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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