Gilich reveals ambitious $700M plan to grow Biloxi - - The News for South Mississippi

Gilich reveals ambitious $700M plan to grow Biloxi

Mayor FoFo Gilich (Photo source: WLOX) Mayor FoFo Gilich (Photo source: WLOX)

"You can't get anything done without a plan and without a vision. You've got to start somewhere."

Those were the words of Mayor FoFo Gilich as he presented an ambitious list of more than two dozen items to the Biloxi City Council for consideration Tuesday morning.

The proposed plan listed more than $700 million in projects to grow Biloxi in several different ways.

The list includes long-discussed ideas, like a new corridor connecting Interstate 10 to Highway 90 in west Biloxi, and new technology driven initiatives that could lend a helping hand to new homeowners and start-up businesses.

Gilich said he wants to put his city in a position to capitalize on what he calls a one-time opportunity.

"This is a vision of projects to put Biloxi where it needs to be for the next generation,” said Gilich. “As far as the cost, we want to be in a position to maximize the one-time opportunity that we'll have when BP Restore Act money becomes available, and we want to be in a position to use Tidelands money, a significant amount of which is generated each year right here in Biloxi."

Gilich said the seven-year plan could be funded through federal, state, local and private funds.

The largest and most expensive project on the list is the north-south corridor connecting I-10 to Highway 90. The estimated cost of that project is $250 million.

Another idea that was thrown into the mix is an entertainment and retail district similar to Pier 39 in San Francisco. That project would carry a price tag of more than $100 million.

Other proposed projects include a new main entrance gate to Keesler Air Force Base at Division Street, a $50 million computer science center at the Biloxi Public Schools Fernwood site and major water and sewer upgrades in the Woolmarket area.

"These are all ideas to think about," Gilich said. "We'll be refining this list over time. I like to look at it as a seven-year plan and a vision that will be refined and come more into focus over several months, as we identify funding sources and opportunities."

Click here to find a full layout of Gilich’s plans to move Biloxi forward.

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