Vacant Houses Line Holley Street - - The News for South Mississippi

Vacant Houses Line Holley Street

Residents of Holley Street in Biloxi successfully opposed a high rise condominium project in their neighborhood several years ago.

The condos never made it beyond the planning stages.

But now, instead of condominiums, those same neighbors are faced with eight vacant, boarded-up houses on their street.

"I'd like to see somebody living in those houses," said Bobby Migues, as he stared at the shuttered property across the street from his Holley Street home.

Migues would like some new neighbors across the street.

There are now eight vacant houses on Holley between Howard and Highway 90.

Neighbors who fought a planned condominium project on this ten acre site, now face a different concern.

"Those houses there, right now, are an eyesore to the neighborhood, to the City of Biloxi and anybody else that comes by. Either tear 'em down and put something there, or put them back to rental where somebody could go in and take care of it," said a frustrated Migues.

The ten acre site, including the houses, was purchased by developer Allen Paulsen in 1998. He pursued plans for a luxury condominium project, a plan neighbors strongly opposed.

Mr. Paulsen died nearly two years ago. His heirs plan on selling the site, complete with houses.

"We were contacted by the estate approximately two weeks ago that the estate is going to officially put the property on the market," said Realtor, Cynthia Joachim, who's handling the sale of the ten acre site.

A Biloxi code enforcement officer told WLOX News the real estate company managing the properties has done a good job of keeping the grass cut and keeping vagrants out of the houses. But neighbors worry the longer these houses stay boarded up, the more dilapidated they'll likely become.

"A house that sits up like that deteriorates and just makes, makes the whole house go down to nothing," said Migues.

The realtor handling the property is confident she'll find a buyer. But she wants neighbors to know future plans may include condos or apartments.

"Frankly, the highest and best use is going to be either for multi family or for commercial development," said Cynthia Joachim.

Neighbors may consider such plans an acceptable alternative, to what's next door now.

The Realtor says the property owner may consider offers to sell the houses individually and have them moved off the property. But any potential buyer would have to assume all costs of re-locating the homes.

By Steve Phillips

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