Gilich outlines paving plans for east Biloxi

Warren Paving Co. began grading Main Street today and expects to have paving underway on the roadway Friday or Monday, weather permitting.

Announcement of the east Biloxi work was part of Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich’s presentation to the Biloxi Chamber’s Breakfast with the Mayor session this morning at IP Casino Resort Spa.

The temporary paving work, Gilich said, is designed to bring relief to residents and businesses who have endured the 55 miles of unpaved streets from I-110 to Point Cadet, north of the CSX railway, the so-called “north contract.” The east Biloxi infrastructure work now underway represents a third of the city’s massive $355 million in storm repairs. The north contract ¬†has another 300 days remaining before city moves south of the CSX railway for a 1200-day project.

“We’re going to pave Main Street first, beginning today (with grading work),” Gilich said, “and then we’re going to pave two lanes on Division Street for two-way traffic from Lee Street to Caillavet Street. You’ve probably already seen the traffic signals in the flashing mode in that area to help move traffic along.”

Gilich said the temporary paving will spread out to neighborhood streets after Main and Division are complete in the next couple of weeks.

“The city has budgeted $600,000 for this temporary paving,” Gilich said, “and we’re going to get the most out of it. At the same time, we’re working on a matrix to make sure we’re not paving a street where the infrastructure contractor will be tearing up.”

Gilich, who became mayor 10 months ago, as the infrastructure work was well underway, again promised that the construction process would be far more coordinated and not nearly as widespread as motorists have witnessed in the east Biloxi work now underway.

In other issues, the mayor said the turnout for the recent Amtrak inspection tour impressed the Amtrak executives and rail leaders aboard the train. As a result, he said, he hoped some sort of rail service would move forward within two years.

The mayor also said he was encouraged by the state Legislature’s action to kill a bill that would have siphoned $50 million from the initial $150 million in BP funds and transferred the money to road and bridge repairs statewide. ¬†Said the mayor: “All of must stay engaged in this.”

The chamber also recognized two Biloxi public safety officers – Police Inv. Sgt. Michael Brennan and Firefighter Morgan Howe – as officers of the quarter.
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News and notes

City Council: To see photos from the two City Council meetings on Tuesday – a morning meeting dominated by boat owners and an afternoon meeting – click here.

Socially relevant: The city’s Facebook page is closing in on 13,500 Likes. while the Biloxi Twitter platform has 670 followers. To engage with the city using social media, click here.

Easter eggs: Two Easter carnivals take place on Saturday, in the morning at MGM Park, where eggs will fall from the sky, and in the afternoon at Hiller Park. For details on the events, click here.