Unsafe, unhealthy trailer park reduced to rubble

By Steve Phillips - bio | email

GAUTIER, MS (WLOX) - A dilapidated trailer park that's been called "unsafe and unhealthy" is finally getting cleaned-up.

Gulf Breeze trailer park in Gautier has been a neglected eyesore for years. What's worse, it's located along a major highway leading to the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

WLOX News has reported on this problem property more than once. We visited the site at Brown Road and Highway 57 in mid October and was told the property owners had promised to get going on cleaning up the site.

It took a few months, but they kept their word.

A demolition contractor is using a track hoe to manage the mess. Mounds of debris are all that remain from what once were trailers; trailers in deplorable condition.

During our visit in mid-October you could see trailers falling apart, with the wind blown mess littering the landscape along Highway 57.

"I'm so glad to see it gone. Everybody would say, where do you live? And I'd say, you know that trashy trailer park on Highway 57? They'd say yeah. Well, I live out behind it," said resident Denny Dennison.

He was among the growing number of frustrated neighbors. They've put up with the problem property for years.

"I got to the point where I just quit writing letters and quit making phone calls. Because it wasn't doing any good. But I'm so glad to see it go," he said.

Only two trailers remain on the property. The rest have been torn down and hauled away.

WLOX News talked with two other neighbors who live closest to this property. Although both preferred not to go on camera, one woman said she'd lived there for 25 years and told us she's "thrilled" to see the property finally cleaned up.

Another man who's lived there since Katrina, said he too is happy to see the eyesore almost gone.

Mayor Pete Pope said the problem property was discussed at a recent city council meeting and the property owners agreed then to go ahead with the required clean-up. He's heard numerous complaints over the years and is pleased to see the improvement.

Although glad to see the dilapidated trailers removed, Dennison said it is a shame the site was allowed to deteriorate so badly.

"A little bit of maintenance and a little bit of care and it could have been kept up. But it's a shame, cause it was a good place for some people to get a place to live," he lamented.

The condition of the Gulf Breeze trailer park worsened dramatically after Katrina. Thieves stripped the rundown trailers of scrap metal, leaving loose insulation to blow with the wind, leaving a trail of litter along Highway 57.