Diamondhead officials say donated roadway will provide economic opportunities

DIAMONDHEAD, MS (WLOX) - The City of Diamondhead will soon have a new road to call its own. It's all thanks to a donation.

Purcell, a real-estate development company, is in the process of donating 1,000 feet of narrow roadway to the City of Diamondhead and city officials say that's going to help improve the city's business district.

The donated road begins behind Rouses next to the East Hancock County Library sign and ends at the roundabout located in front of Hancock Medical Outpatient Services.

Diamondhead City Manager Richard Rose says owning this road will open many doors for development.

"This will allow us to be able to go to developers as well as the Mississippi development authority and other agencies to try to help get some funding for not just road improvements, but infrastructure improvements for water and sewer, but also try to create an atmosphere for public and private partnerships that we are working towards with Purcell and other developers," said Diamondhead City Manager Richard Road.

The city would also like to see the 15 acres of land surrounding the donated road developed for retail projects. Additionally the city is working with Rouses, Triple Diamond Corporation and Purcell to get the strips of land bordering East Aloha Drive.

"So we want to try to create the opportunity to own the land and create the opportunity to develop a streetscape plan and make it look beautiful," Rose said.

Rose says the streetscapes will be more welcoming to shoppers and hopefully attract new businesses.

Diamondhead City Council member At-Large Ernie Knobloch said, "We do have some new businesses that are in here now compared to a couple years ago, but we still have a long ways to go and the ultimate goal would be to increase economic development so that we could reduce the mileage rate if possible."

City officials are also interested in putting a turning lane in front of East Aloha Drive. About a year ago Rouses donated East Aloha Drive to the city. It's also a 1,000 foot road way.

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