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Biloxi leaders rush to clean Highway 90 ahead of Cruisin’ the Coast

Biloxi leaders rush to clean Highway 90 ahead of ‘Cruisin the Coast’
Biloxi leaders rush to clean Highway 90 ahead of ‘Cruisin the Coast’(WLOX)
Published: Sep. 13, 2021 at 9:04 PM CDT
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BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - As the old saying goes, you never have a second chance to make a good first impression.

Biloxi leaders are taking that philosophy to heart as they rush to clean up Highway 90 before Cruisin’ the Coast.

It’s one of the city’s biggest tourist events where thousands of drivers will cruise down Highway 90 in their classic cars, and it’s only three weeks away.

Since Hurricane Ida made its way through, the coastal roadway is still in poor condition.

The medians along the 26-mile stretch are littered with debris from the beach, and several areas of the road are covered with sand.

With the buildup of sand in the grass, Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich said it’s difficult for crews to even use mowing equipment.

Another challenge to improving the city’s front yard is that it’s actually a joint venture.

The City of Biloxi is responsible for the area north of the highway while the county maintains the median and sand beach and MDOT maintains Highway 90.

Gilich met with Gov. Tate Reeves and the Deputy Director of MDOT last week, as well as county leaders Monday morning.

He said they’re now taking steps together toward their main priority, which is clearing remnants from the sea off the medians and keeping it clear.

“It seems like a storm just blew through here yesterday,” Gilich said. “So we need to do something maybe to mitigate, you know, and try to put some sand fences and some vegetation. And, you know, given time, it will be a long-term solution but, you know, we got to do this in a hurry.”

One project toward improvement is already in the works from Oak Street near Harrah’s Casino to the Small Craft Harbor.

Crews are gearing up to build a 10-foot concrete boardwalk on top of the seawall in an effort to block the sand from the highway.

Gilich said that vision will come to life within the next nine months, and it will be a good test to see whether it’s needed for this entire 26-mile stretch where the roadway meets the sandy beach.

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