Residents Fear Developer's Plans

A ditch that runs through Hancock Place and several other streets in Bayou View helps keep drainage flowing. Some neighborhood residents say a developer's plan to market lots south of Hancock Place will interfere with the drainage.

"Creating waterfront property by taking a drainage ditch and moving it 80 feet north and digging it eight feet deep, 60 feet wide and creating waterfront property, additional culverting of a ditch that drains all of Bayou View and could potentially affect hundreds of people," says Larry Clark

Jim McCarthy says, "Now when it rains a coupla inches the water rises in my backyard, my neighbor's backyard. We're on the south side of Quincy and once it goes over Quincy it quits rising. Now if he blocks it back up this way then there's no place to go, it'll keep right on comin' and it'll get in all our houses then."

Drainage isn't their only concern.

"My second major concern is his bulkhead will be literally holding up our street. It will come within ten feet of the edge of the pavement of our street and if that bulkhead fails our street will fail," says Prissy Jordan.

The Gulfport Planning Commission has already okayed the developer's proposal. The residents will appeal to the city council at Tuesday's meeting. Developer Mike Achee says he's not creating any problem that doesn't already exist.

"The drainage problem exists right now today because there's nothing between here and Bayou Bernard but this water, so if we clear it out and open it up the water's gonna go out quicker. We're gonna clear this ditch out, bulkhead it and make where you can drive a boat which is done up and down the coast," says Achee.

Achee says he hopes to make that point at the council meeting to reassure the residents that his development will help, not hurt Bayou View.