Hot topic issues discussed at Gulfport town hall meeting

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - They have been hot topic issues for a while now.

What will be done with the Lorraine Road bridge and what's the status of the Dedeaux Road widening project?

Thursday, 3 Gulfport council members held a meeting to discuss those big projects, as well as other issues.

"Let's talk about Dedeaux Road widening," said Councilman R. Lee Flowers.

He wasted no time, addressing the issue at the forefront of many people's minds.

"It's been 18 years now since this portion of Dedeaux Road was widened," said Councilman Flowers.

Gulfport Resident Bill Murphy shared that frustration. After years of waiting, he said he has only one hope.

"To see it done before I die," said Murphy. "In all honesty, we're sitting here watching double trucks come down here now with trailers and big tankers come down that aren't going to the gas stations."

Flowers encouraged everyone to stay patient.

"So were going to focus our phase one," said Flowers. "There's 31 properties that we have to acquire in that portion of the road."

Then the next big item was discussed, the Lorraine Road bridge.

"Assessment of that bridge came out very much better than what our engineers had previously been told what the rating for that bridge was," said Flowers.

Flowers said a replacement bridge will likely be the answer. While that is being built, the old bridge would temporarily be re-opened.

While many are frustrated with the delays caused by the bridge closing, Angelo Chaloult is happy the problem is being addressed.

"In a way, I'm glad the bridge is closed," said Chaloult. "Because if a situation would develop that the bridge would cave in, it would be disastrous."

Council members encouraged questions and addressed the big issues that pertained to their respective wards.

Councilman of ward 5 Myles Sharp assured everyone he is working to get the drainage issues fixed, but he's having to clear budget hurdles first.

"Water, sewer, drainage is some of the most expensive thing that a municipality can face," said Sharp.

Council members assured everyone they're working toward the betterment of Gulfport, but these issues will take time to resolve.

"We're working as diligently as we can," said Flowers.

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