D'IBERVILLE, MS (WLOX) - The development on Race Track Road in D'Iberville may not end with the opening of the Scarlet Pearl Casino Resort. At Tuesday night's city council meeting, city leaders approved a $14 million tax increment financing plan. A Race Track Road redevelopment project has been mentioned as part of that plan. That stretch of road now sits in the shadow of the Scarlet Pearl's construction site, and it may be getting new life soon.
"It's part of a city growing, and it should be a good thing for the city," said Mike Eick.
Like several people who live along Race Track, Eick can see the top of the Scarlet Pearl from his house. If new businesses come, he'll be one of the first to know about it. He can't say he hates the possibility, and he hasn't heard anyone say otherwise.
"I can't say I've heard any opposition. I'm sure some people want it to remain the way it always was, but change is inevitable and it's what's going to happen," said Eick.
After living on this road for two decades, he expected changes to eventually happen. So did Mary Freche.
"We've lived here forever, and we kind of just go with the flow," said Freche.
Freche and her husband have decided to take advantage of what they hope will be a busy casino.
"If we're going to live here, why not," said Freche.
They're putting the finishing touches on a new kayak rental business. Freche said she expects to see even more businesses if the city starts to make the area more attractive.
According to Freche, there are plenty of empty lots leftover from Katrina displacement that could be developed if they were in the right hands. Even so, Freche said she doesn't want to see too much development.
"There's already a lot more traffic downtown than there used to be, and we've always liked the nice, quiet neighborhood," said Freche.
But, she's open to change.
"If it happens, it happens," Freche said.
Another item under consideration is the city entering into a regional economic development alliance agreement with Harrison County. If that happens, it will be just a matter of time to see what changes will be in store for the road and its residents.