Traffic cones in place; Scrapin underway

Public Works crews this morning placed traffic cones in the center lanes of U.S. 90 in the 8.2 miles from I-110 and DeBuys Road signaling the big news for beachfront motorists: Scrapin the Coast 2018 has arrived.

The annual two-day show, now in its 16th year at the Coast Coliseum, attracts a decidedly younger demographic than Cruisin’ the Coast, and the vehicles are trendier, with a heavy accent on those customized to ride lower to the ground, “scrapin’.”

The auto show, with vendors and an array of auto-related contests, runs through 5 p.m. today on the Coliseum grounds and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

But, as is the case with Cruisin’ and Spring Break, U.S. 90 is the focal point of the event, with  thousands of vehicles and spectators along U.S. 90, especially near the Coast Coliseum.  Police, as a result, have unveiled a traffic plan that is becoming standard operating procedure for major traffic-producing events on U.S. 90. Under the plan, left lanes on U.S. 90 from I-110 to DeBuys Road will be reserved for emergency vehicles during peak traffic times. The plan, which also calls for closing non-signalized intersections and “venting” of traffic to avoid gridlock, helps ensure emergency response.

Police this week delivered nearly 10,000 maps to Biloxi hotels explaining the traffic plan. Signs will be posted along the highway, and the city’s B-Alert service – text BILOXI to 888777 – will issue traffic advisories as needed throughout the weekend.

“I look for the volume of traffic to pick up later this afternoon, that’s when they usually begin hitting town,” Biloxi Police Chief John Miller said this afternoon. “Then you can expect traffic to continue to get heavier to at least 10 tonight, and pick back up between 10 and 11 in the morning on Saturday and growing until later in the evening.”

This year, organizers expect more than 2,300 vehicles to register, but “there’s a great many more spectators, maybe triple or quadruple the number of registrants.

“Scrapin the Coast has become a major event,” Miller said, “and as we always say for all of our events in Biloxi: We want people to come and have a great time, but make sure it’s a safe time.”
See more about the Scrapin the Coast traffic plan
See more about Scrapin the Coast
City Desk: Police discuss the traffic plan
See the overall weekend entertainment lineup
See the June Community Calendar


Irish Hill to see temporary closures

Looks like Irish Hill won’t be your alterate route to escape Scrapin’ traffic this wekeend – at least during the daytime. 

Hemphill Construction is closing Irish Hill from Summer Place to St. Paul during daylight hours through Monday to install a new water main along the roadway. The closure, which is actually from 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., will detour traffic to Father Ryan Avenue.

As work progresses, expect to see daytime closures from Hubbard Place west to White Avenue and White Avenue east to Azalea Drive. Work is expected to be completed within 15 business days.

The work is part of an 800-day, $23 million project to see new water, sewer and drainage installed in an area from downtown Biloxi to Seashore Methodist, south of the CSX Railway.
See traffic advisories and road closures
Map: See the Hemphill work area


Biloxi’s Main Street director honored as best in state

Mississippi Main Street Association has named Kay Miller as the Outstanding Director of the Year.

Kay Miller, who serves as the Biloxi Main Street Executive Director as well as the City of Biloxi Downtown Services Manager, was honored with the prestigious award Thursday afternoon during the 29th Annual Awards Luncheon in Jackson.

“I was very surprised and excited to receive this award,” Miller said.  “I feel so honored to be selected. There are many wonderful and hardworking Main Street Directors in the state of Mississippi.”   

Mississippi Main Street celebrates the achievements of Mississippi Main Street Communities as well as the local directors for helping to make downtown districts move completive, successful and sustainable.

Biloxi Main Street is a multi-faceted, independent organization dedicated to preserve, protect and promote the unique historical character of Old Biloxi.  Biloxi’s Main Street District is from Porter Avenue at the Biloxi Lighthouse east to Bellman Street and north to Esters Blvd. It also includes Caillevet Street. 

Added Miller: “I love my job and I will continue to hopefully share with the world, that Biloxi is a wonderful place to live, work, and visit.”
See a photo from the awards ceremony


News & notes: ‘FoFo’ x 2; splash pad; City Desk; weekend preview; B-Alert

Two “FoFos” and a Pitbull:  Come to find out, Biloxi’s mayor is not the only “FoFo.” Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich, at the opening of ilov305 at the Hard Rock Thursday afternoon to present a proclamation to Pitbull, discovered that the world-renowed singer’s father is also nicknamed “FoFo.”  To see images from the event, click here

Splash pad:  A ribbon cutting was held on Thursday morning for the opening of Biloxi’s newest splash pad located at the John Henry Beck Park off Division Street.  To see photos from the event, click here

City Desk:  This week’s edition of the City Desk podcast, recorded Thursday morning at Biloxi City Hall, focuses on the Scrapin the Coast traffic plan and the Splashin’ the Coast swim meet.  To listen, click here.

Weekend preview: Scrapin the Coast takes place at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center with participants cruising along U.S. 90, Postmodern Jukebox will be at the Hard Rock, Chicks with Hits will be at the IP, and Gladys Knight perform at the Beau Rivage.  To see the Scrapin the Coast traffic plan, click here.  To see a complete weekend lineup, click here.

B-Alert: Keep up with Biloxi traffic advisories during Scrapin the Coast by signing up for B-Alert.  It’s easy: Just text BILOXI to 888777.  To see more about B-Alert, click here