Comprehensive Plan Update

The City of Biloxi is currently updating its comprehensive plan to guide long-range development of the City over the next 20 to 25 years.

Click on individual links above for information about various aspects of the project.

This update of the Biloxi Vision 2020 Comprehensive Plan began in May 2008 and will be completed in approximately one year. The plan will be consistent with state’s Code of 1972, as amended, Section 17-1-1.

This site will provide general information about the development of the city’s comprehensive plan, public meeting dates and locations, and other announcements.

Once the comprehensive plan process is completed, the city will update its Zoning Ordinances, Subdivision Regulations, and Architectural Design Standards to be consistent with the goals, objectives, and strategies of the Plan.

What is a comprehensive plan?

A comprehensive plan is a statement of goals, objectives, and strategies that establishes a municipality’s vision for the future and how it is to be implemented through planning policy, capital investments, and regulatory tools.

A comprehensive plan addresses all aspects of the municipality, including land use, transportation, housing, recreation and open space, natural resources, public utilities, schools, health and safety, historic preservation, and economic development.

The city’s Vision 2020 Plan was prepared in 1996, at the start of a decade of population growth and economic prosperity in Biloxi. During this period, the city’s resort and hotel industry developed and grew. Biloxians’ invested in new schools and technology, transportation, heritage and culture, historic neighborhoods, affordable housing, public safety, and recreation. In 2005 Hurricane Katrina massively impacted the city, destroying over 20% of Biloxi’s homes and businesses. Many historic homes and landmarks were severely damaged or destroyed.

As residents and businesses began to rebuild, the city and community groups, with significant public involvement, prepared plans to guide the process.

These plans include the Reviving the Renaissance Plan, A Reconstruction Plan for Biloxi, and the East Biloxi Community Plan. Biloxi has changed significantly since its last long-range plan was prepared in 1996. Public and private investment in the city following Hurricane Katrina is well underway, but is occurring without the benefit of an updated comprehensive plan and vision.

The comprehensive plan will present a community-wide framework that defines how the many elements of the city and post-Katrina projects will fit together to support a common vision and purpose. This plan will provide:

  • A reflection of community values and aspirations expressing what Biloxi will be;
  • A guide for managing change;
  • A reference point for policy-making;
  • A direction or action list for public projects and initiatives.

How will the plan be developed?

The Plan will be developed through a five step process.

1. Project Organization + Mobilization

The planning process begins with a review of current information pertaining to development trends, population projections, floodplain regulations, and current planning initiatives at the neighborhood, city, and regional levels.

2. Existing Conditions, Trends, and Issues

The process then proceeds to examine existing conditions, trends, and key issues that will affect Biloxi’s future. Public input is essential in developing the comprehensive plan at the beginning stages. Opportunities for public input in this phase include a statistically valid telephone survey of a percentage of Biloxi voters and a series of public meetings throughout the city.

This analysis will provide the basis for developing the Plan’s goals, objectives, strategies, and implementation actions as the process moves forward.

Existing Conditions, Trends, and Issues will address:

  • Demographic characteristics and trends
  • Land use and floodzones
  • Streets and transportation
  • Community facilities and services
  • Housing
  • Economy and employment
  • Neighborhood analysis
  • Public survey and input
  • Review of previous plans and existing regulations

3. Long-Range Goals and Objectives

The next step in the planning process involves defining long-range goals and objectives and updating policies adopted by previous plans. Using planning analysis and citizen input from public meetings and the statistically valid survey, the planning team will formulate a vision statement, goals, and objectives that capture citizens’ aspirations for the future of Biloxi.

4. Comprehensive plan development

The work of the previous phases is further developed and tested during the plan development phase of the process to produce the full comprehensive plan.

The elements of the plan will include:

  • Land Use Plan
  • Transportation
  • Community Facilities
  • Housing
  • Economic Development

In addition, the Plan will provide improvement strategies for the downtown and Biloxi’s neighborhoods. Implementation is a critical element of the plan. The implementation element of the plan will define the actions to be taken to achieve its vision, goals, and objectives.

5. Comprehensive plan adoption

The final phase of the planning process includes the preparation of the comprehensive plan document and the process necessary to secure its adoption. This process will include public hearings, followed by revisions to the draft plan which will result in the final Biloxi Comprehensive Plan document.

Who is the Planning Team?

The comprehensive plan is being prepared by the City of Biloxi with assistance from a team of local and national consultants led by Wallace Roberts & Todd, LLC (WRT). WRT is a multi-disciplinary firm of planners, urban designers, architects, and landscape architects. A national leader in comprehensive planning and growth management for over 40 years, WRT is known for its innovative planning and growth management techniques in landmark projects such as the Baltimore County Growth Management Plan, the Sanibel Island Comprehensive Plan, and the Orlando Regional Growth Management Plan.

The website links below provide information about the city and its lead planner.