Biloxi City Council wants rezoning package deal

The rezoning request by La Quinta was bumped back to the planning commission so the city council could reconsider rezoning several properties to commercial all at one time on Hwy 90. (Photo source: WLOX News)
The rezoning request by La Quinta was bumped back to the planning commission so the city council could reconsider rezoning several properties to commercial all at one time on Hwy 90. (Photo source: WLOX News)

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The Biloxi City Council pushed the pause button on a request by La Quinta Inn and Suites project owners to rezone two pieces of property on Beach Boulevard from residential to commercial.

And as a result, the move promises to have a more far-reaching effect on business development.

The resolution was sent back to the planning commission so the city could reconsider rezoning properties on U.S. 90 from Benachi Avenue to Hopkins Boulevard.

Many officials and residents in that area understand that property will never go back to residential and are not opposed to commercial development.

Seal Avenue resident Dennis Burke just wants to make sure than whatever is developed is sensitive to aesthetics.

"We're asking if we've got commercial businesses coming in, and they're going to be in this area, why can't they be built to look like what should be in the area," Attorney for the La Quinta franchise owners, Wayne Hengen.

Hengen, said the owners of the franchise are tuned in to the neighborhood's architectural and cultural needs. The property includes some of the biggest Live oak trees on the Coast.

Hengen said the original request was made by La Quinta several months ago.

But he added he was surprised and disappointed that the request has been sent back to the planning commission.

He said the city needs the hotel for the additional business and rooms.

"Their idea is, let's do it as a package deal, but they shouldn't hold up the development. We're talking about a multi-million dollar project and when you put off things, it makes it difficult for the people borrowing money and the people lending money as well as well as contractors," Hengen said.

If the rezoning is approved, there will be a review of by the Architectural and Historical Review Committee.

The resolution and the architectural review will be in October.

And while Hengen was not happy with the delay, he says he doesn't think it will keep the project from continuing.

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