Developer to study east Biloxi convention center sites

The idea of an east Biloxi convention center — to be located amidst the 5,000 or so hotel rooms east of Interstate 110 – is not a new one, but now a developer could be stepping in to take a serious look at the issue.

Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich is proposing the city enter into an agreement where BBR Biloxi development would invest as much as $250,000 to consider the idea, suggest sites, and, if feasible, move forward with a $150 million, “world class, waterfront, mixed use convention center and retail project.”

The idea of a second convention center in Biloxi, closer to the large inventory of hotel rooms in east Biloxi, has been discussed for decades, and tourism leaders brought the idea up again at a two-day waterfront conference weeks ago at Biloxi City Hall.

Under the proposal on the City Council agenda meeting Tuesday, BBR Biloxi would identify potential sites in east Biloxi, which could include the vacant city-owned Tullis-Toledano property on east beach. In fact, the resolution says if Tullis is indeed deemed a favorable site, the developer could have first option to buy the land, at 20 percent above market value.

Also on Tuesday, the City Council will have a 4 p.m. meeting to continue discussion on a proposed $14 million bond to fund major and citywide projects.
See the convention center resolution
See the City Council agendas for Tuesday


News and notes: Roast, podcast, traffic

Roast: With 495 seats sold, the roast of Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich Thursday night at the IP Resort was the largest roast in the 16-year history of Biloxi First, and the success of event, says Biloxi First  President Tanner Swetman, is a reason the Biloxi non-profit has grown its education endowment fund to more than a million dollars. To see photos of the grilling of the mayor, which raised tens of thousands of dollars for classroom projects in Biloxi Public Schools, click here.

Podcast:  Proposed bond issues and other news of note are discussed in this week’s edition of the City Desk podcast. To listen to the program, click here

Traffic:  To see the status of road and infrastructure work throughout the city, click here