PICAYUNE, MS (WLOX) - Pretty soon, those who visit and call Picayune home will have a newly completed green space to enjoy. The groundbreaking ceremony for the next construction phase of Crosby Commons was held Tuesday morning.
It's a park with deep roots in the City of Picayune. Now, a grant from the Transportation Alternative Program is making it even better.
"It's federal money, but federal money is our money. You'll see some of that that we're able to give back through a grant program, and only a grant program, back to city and county entities," said Southern District Transportation Commissioner Tom King.
According to King, the grants for the Crosby Commons will end up totaling around $700,000. That's not including the local matches that add to that.
The city has already seen the space through its first phase of renovation, which included a walking track, fence, and new entrance. The second phase will include lighting, trees, an outdoor stage, bathrooms, historical markers, and another bricked entrance. It's something city officials say will bring a touch of history to the commons, tying it back to Crosby Memorial Hospital that used to sit on the five-acre property.
"The bricks on the columns are actually from the old hospital stack that was torn down when they tore down the hospital. So, they salvaged some of those bricks," said city engineer Brooks Wallace.
Residents seem to be happy with the possibilities.
"This is a special place," said J.P. Burns.
The space is particularly special to Burns, because he met his wife on this property back when it was still the hospital.
"She was a nurse here at the hospital. I had my tonsils taken out. We started and lived together 57 and a half years," Burns said.
Now, he hopes many more people will be able to make happy memories in this space for years to come. Officials hope the second phase will be completed this summer.