Broadwater Storm Debris Hauled Off Property - - The News for South Mississippi

Broadwater Storm Debris Hauled Off Property

The Broadwater once reigned over Biloxi. But since August 29th, Biloxi's grande dame has been just another property littered with hurricane debris. Its last guest was Katrina -- a storm that crushed every building on the 266 acre property.

Allen Ware is on the Broadwater's demolition team.

"I think my sophomore prom was there," he remembered.

Nearly a quarter of a century later, Ware said, "I couldn't believe what I saw."

What he saw were piles of debris that contained seven decades of Broadwater history.

In its heyday, celebrities often stayed at this resort. Their celebrations helped the Brown family build the Broadwater's reputation as Biloxi's flagship hotel. What the Browns built in the 50s, Katrina knocked down in a blink of an eye.

"It's already basically gone," said Ware. "Before we started on it, it was pretty well shot. There was so much debris back here, you couldn't move around. I think they spent more time cleaning up the driveways so we could get our trucks in and out than anything else."

The end of the Broadwater isn't the headline of this story. Before the storm, new owners had already closed the hotel. And they were preparing to tear it down. Katrina simply expedited those plans.

It's how the hurricane pounded away at the resort, and turned everything on the Broadwater property upside down that had demolition experts like Ware shaking their heads in disbelief.

"I don't know. I was nine-years-old when Camille hit," he said. "I remember Camille. I don't think Camille did this much (damage).  It's been here forever. But it's pretty well torn down already."

Over the next 90 days, what's left of the Broadwater should be hauled to a dump site.

So what happens to the waterfront property once it's cleared? An official announcement about future development plans at the Broadwater should be made in about a month.

by Brad Kessie

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