Property easements needed for Brickyard Bayou drainage project

Property easements needed for Brickyard Bayou drainage project

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - A second public meeting was held Monday in Gulfport to discuss improvements for Brickyard Bayou, one of the biggest drainage arteries in the city, in an effort to prevent future flooding.

"It drains a large portion of the City of Gulfport near the areas where it runs," said Gulfport Assistant City Attorney Margaret Murdock.

The plan calls for removing debris and brush from the bayou east of Highway 49. It also includes plans to as well as the widen and realign the channel to the west of the highway.

"There are even more severe problems in western Gulfport with Brickyard Bayou," said Dax Alexander, one of the engineers on the project. "But with any drainage project, you need to work from downstream to upstream. So this is the next downstream segment that needs improvement."

Project organizers are hoping to move forward in early 2016, but before the work can start, 30 property easements have to be acquired.

"The city needs to acquire rights to go on the property and do the work," said Alexander.

Right now, the city is in the process of setting up appraisals of the needed properties.

"Once we have the appraisals in, the city will make offers to each of the property owners," said Assistant City Attorney Murdock. "Where and how we proceed then is up to the property owners."

The property owners will be notified if their land is needed.

According to Alexander, the drainage improvement project is designed to do more than just control flooding of Brickyard Bayou.

"I'm not going to say we'll solve 100% of all the flooding," said Alexander. "But drainage will be better and you'll eliminate a lot of the underbrush and eliminate areas for potential varmints, rodents, and nuisance kind of things."

The plan calls for the project to be finished by the end of 2016.

Copyright 2015 WLOX. All rights reserved.