Pass Christian seeing development boom - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Pass Christian seeing development boom

Once all of the hotels currently planned are complete, the Pass will have more than 100 rooms available in its downtown area. (Photo: WLOX) Once all of the hotels currently planned are complete, the Pass will have more than 100 rooms available in its downtown area. (Photo: WLOX)

The skyline of Pass Christian is beginning to change, one street at a time.

The downtown area has seen significant renovations and additions in recent years, including the first hotel construction in more than 90 years. But, that's not all.

"Things are starting to happen down here and we are very, very excited about that," said Mayor Chipper McDermott.

According to McDermott, the development hasn't happened without challenges. There have been new regulations and codes enforced since Hurricane Katrina, and new insurance rates to go along with it.

"So it's not just, 'Go build on the land.' There's gonna be a lot of things that can work before you can do it. But right now it's looks the best it's looked in a long time," said McDermott.

An apartment and retail complex is going up on Scenic Drive and, just down the street, a Hampton Inn is getting closer to coming out of the ground. Further down the street, a new addition to the Bacchus restaurant property is nearing completion.

"We always saw a vision to get bigger, and really come back and build Pass Christian back since the hurricane," said Wes Newell, Vice President of the Nicaud Restaurant Group, the group responsible for Bacchus restaurants across Mississippi.

Newell and his business partner Jourdan Nicaud planted their hospitality roots in the Pass four years ago and haven't looked back. The pair say their 10-room hotel is scheduled to open in May and that another addition, including a pool and bar area, could start soon after that.

The mayor says such a boom in development can be attributed to the comeback made by New Orleans since Katrina. In fact, a popular Big Easy restaurant has purchased land right next to city hall with plans to build.

Once all of the hotels currently planned are complete, the Pass will have more than 100 rooms available in its downtown area.

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