D'Iberville explores potential of Tchoutacabouffa River - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

D'Iberville explores potential of Tchoutacabouffa River

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The City of D'Iberville sees potential along the Tchoutacabouffa River. That's why city leaders are pursuing a project to create a riverfront park and paddling trail along the scenic waterway. The City of D'Iberville sees potential along the Tchoutacabouffa River. That's why city leaders are pursuing a project to create a riverfront park and paddling trail along the scenic waterway.
D'IBERVILLE, MS (WLOX) -

Natural beauty abounds along the winding Tchoutacabouffa River.  Locals have enjoyed the river for generations. Now D'Iberville is exploring opportunities.

"It's been a dream for a long time for the city to do something with the upper Tchoutacabouffa. The lower part has been developed for years, but from this point north, it's basically undisturbed," said Jeff Taylor, who helps direct economic development for the city.

Along with a small park, initial plans also call for linking sections of the river for paddle sports.

"Connecting a paddling trail, often called a blueway. It's for low impact recreational: kayaks, canoes, stand up paddle boards," said Cynthia Ramseur, who's a consultant on the project.

She says long range plans include adjoining walking trails, which will require conservation easements. Ramseur says people often get environmentalism and conservation confused.

"Conservation is really more about people. Because it's about people's choices about the natural areas around them. And I think here in South Mississippi we have some great opportunities to connect people back to the natural areas," she explained.

Not only does this project promise to boost recreational and tourism opportunities, it's also seen as a catalyst for long term economic development. Short term economic development could mean more customers for a river front restaurant.

"That's great. We have a lot of people that come and launch their kayak here and come up and grab a bite to eat. So, if this is along the path, that would be super. We'd really like that," said Andrea Borst, with "Your Mamma'z House".

City leaders envision D'Iberville taking advantage of the growing eco-tourism industry.

"Now we've got the eco. So all we need to do is get people to come down here and be a tourist in it," said a smiling Jeff Taylor.

The public is invited to a meeting next Tuesday night to learn more about the project.

The "come and go" meeting will be at D'Iberville City Hall, Tuesday, November 13th, from 6pm until 8pm.

Copyright 2012 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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