Union Street Residents Concerned About Future Habitat Construction

Ten new homes on Union Street in Bay St. Louis are move-in ready, and it's all thanks to Habitat For Humanity.

Most of the long time residents in the neighborhood support Habitat's mission, but oppose what 50 to 60 additional homes might do to their street.

With ten newly built Habitat Homes, Goldie Fairconnetue fears the traffic will only get worse.

"Something needs to be done about the traffic, cause it gets heavy in here," Fairconnetue said.

That's just one of the reasons she opposes Habitat's building plan for her street. She also points to drainage problems. Her husband Russell is more in favor of Habitat's plans.

"I don't know. We don't discuss those things. She has her opinion and I have mine, and we're okay," Russell Fairconnetue said.

Ward 3 Councilman Jeffery Reed is looking for opinions. He asked Habitat representative Wendy McDonald to come to Monday's meeting to listen to residents' concerns.

"The people who live on that street for 30 years know what the issues are," McDonald said.

"The main thing is the load that's going to be on the lift station, the drainage, the sewerage its a big issue," Reed said.

"Bay St. Louis is very flat, so we'll make sure our engineers address the drainage questions and concerns," McDonald said.

But how will Habitat address the traffic 60 more families would add?

"It's a long dead end street and we've made some provisions for accessing from a different street so we're not funneling all the traffic down one street."

Even with these changes though, Habitat for Humanity still has to get more variances to move forward.

"If the citizens say, 'No," that they don't want it, then there's variances that have to happen. Then they just can't build there," Reed said.

"They can, you know, find another location to build the rest of the houses. I'm in favor of the houses, just not in our subdivision," Lucy Duncklin said.

Residents also say the cottages Habitat builds don't blend with the brick homes in their neighborhood. That is one thing Habitat For Humanity can't change.