Lunchtime reception to herald completion of City Hall restoration

The Biloxi City Council holds two meetings in City Hall today, and a lunchtime reception will officially mark the completion of the restoration of the headquarters of Biloxi municipal government.

At 12:30, Mayor A.J. Holloway, MEMA Director Mike Womack, and the Very Rev. John McGrath of Nativity BVM Cathedral will join others in a ribbon-cutting cermeony on the front steps of the Lameuse Street building.

A public reception will be held after the ceremony, ending in time for the City Council’s 1:30 p.m. meeting.

The council will actually begin the day at 10 a.m. with a budget meeting, its first gathering at City Hall in 10 months. It was in October when the council briefly conducted meetings at the Biloxi Community Center before moving to the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Municipal Building while City Hall renovations took place.

City Hall staff, meantime, actually began moving into City Hall in June, two months ahead of schedule.

“We’re pleased with the work from our contractor, J.O. Collins,” Holloway said, noting that the nine-month, $852,000 project was not originally scheduled to be completed until this month.

Among the improvements on the 101-year-old building were re-plastering walls, adding new carpeting and uncovering hardwood floors in some areas, and re-glazing or replacing all windows.

Eley Guild Hardy was the architectural firm for the restoration.

“I think people are really going to be impressed when they see the finished product,” the mayor said, “from the shine of the marble floors, to the color scheme that helps bring out the architectural character of the rooms, all the way to the hardwood floors in the council room.”

See the work for yourself

Photographic tour: To see photos of City Hall, from during the project through this week, click here.

Video tour: To see an online video tour by Biloxi Historical Administrator Bill Raymond, a 10-minute impromptu visit taped two months ago, in June, click here.

Video from way back when: To see the scene outside City Hall back on Aug. 29, 2005, from the city’s online video gallery, click here.