City seeks input regarding Point Cadet waterfront

The public will have a chance to see some of the possibilities for the revitalization of the Point Cadet waterfront and provide guidance during a city-sponsored gathering on Wednesday at 6 p.m. at the Frank G. Gruich Sr. Community Center on Howard Avenue.

Grover Mouton, the director of the Tulane Regional Urban Design Center, and Tulane architecture students will display and discuss some of the concepts and possibilities for the area of Point Cadet near the Biloxi Bay Bridge, the eastern gateway into the city.

The city and state control much of the vacant public land south of U.S. 90 at Point Cadet, where the J.L. Scott Marine Education Center and Aquarium had been located. The city owns the waterfront section north of the Biloxi Bay Bridge, an area known as Point Cadet Plaza, where pre-Katrina visitors could find the Maritime and Seafood Industry Museum and a former Coast Guard hangar that housed the city’s Farmers Market and many community festivals.

Biloxi Mayor A.J. Holloway, an alumnus of the Tulane-run Mayor’s Institute on City Design, tasked Mouton and Tulane students with using the design center’s academic and outreach roles to help develop ideas for the site. About $25,000 in Tidelands funds is paying for the effort, and another $200,000 in Tidelands funds has been approved for an expansion of Point Cadet Marina.

Said Holloway: “The height of the new Biloxi Bay Bridge at the water’s edge, the return of the Maritime and Seafood Museum to its original site, and an expansion of the Point Cadet Marina provide us a number of opportunities to make this area something special.”

The Point Cadet site “represents a wonderful backdrop for public gathering, recreation, festivals, and more,” Mouton said. “Point Cadet can become a prime attraction for residents and visitors alike, and we’ll be discussing how to make some of these possibilities become reality.”

The TRUDC is a community outreach arm of the Tulane University School of Architecture. Expert leaders, professional staff, and dedicated students provide design services to communities throughout the Gulf South.

Picture it: To see an aerial photo of the Point Cadet site, click here.

Previously on Bmail: To see an earlier story about the Point Cadet waterfront plan, click here.

Speaking of Tidelands: Mayor A.J. Holloway this week gave an update on the status of a half-dozen Tidelands projects in Biloxi. To see the report, click here.

News and notes

City Council: The Biloxi City Council’s next scheduled meeting is Tuesday, April 5 at 1:30 p.m. at City Hall.

Weekend preview: This weekend, you’ll find KC and the Sunshine Band, and Natalie Cole at the Hard Rock; Michael McDonald at the Beau Rivage; and the Barbecue at the Oaks, the annual fund-raising event for the Gulf Coast Symphony Orchestra, in Pass Christian. And looking into next week, the Spring Pilgrimmage makes its way into Biloxi on Tuesday. For details on these events and others, click here.

Speaking of tourism:
About 200,000 people were in Biloxi this past weekend, according to those who measured crowds at the Keesler open house and air show, the Hibernia St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Grillin’ on the Green. So what’s next? Find out what’s in store and hear the latest on city initiatives in this week’s City Desk. To listen to the 11-minute program, click here.

Old Brick House:
Historical Administrator Bill Raymond, the point person on the restoration of city’s historic structures, reports that the public will get its first up-close look at the restored Old Brick House on April 7 at 5:30 p.m., when a ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held. Meantime, to see the Old Brick House and another restored facilities in an online progress video, click here.

Speaking of progress:
Mayor A.J. Holloway will provide a progress report on myriad city projects and initiatives when he addresses a Biloxi chamber “Breakfast with the Mayor” audience on Tuesday at 8 a.m. at IP Casino Resort, Ballroom A, third floor.