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Next Phase of U.S. 90 Lighting Project to Begin in Biloxi Next Week

By: Keith Burton   5/4/07  GCN

More street lights are coming to Biloxi starting next week. Biloxi officials report that Mississippi Power Co. contractors are to begin work Tuesday or Wednesday for the next phase of the city’s lighting of U.S. 90. This phase is includes the area between White Avenue and St. George Street.

No lane closures are expected, but Beach Boulevard motorists are urged to use caution when traveling the work area.

The lighting project will cost the city more than $400,000 and is expected to be completed within 90 days. The work includes the installation of 43 40-foot fiberglass breakaway poles in the center median, all topped with 400-watt cobra-head fixtures, the same style fixtures employed before the storm.

Contractors are expected to begin installing underground wiring before poles will be installed. Wiring is expected to be installed by June 8.

“Providing center-median lighting in this area, the so-called Holy Land, is something we didn’t even have before the storm,” Mayor A.J. Holloway in a news release sent to GCN, “so this is one of those cases where we’re building back better than before. In fact, when our work is completed, it will mark the first time that all of Beach Boulevard in Biloxi is lit to stafety-industry standards.”

City officials say the installation of street lights on another section of Beach Boulevard, the two-mile stretch between Beauvoir Road and Rodenberg Avenue, is expected to begin in mid-May and should be completed by the end of July. That $569,000 project, which will involve the installation of 76 break-away poles, is being funded by the federal government.

Lighting repairs are still in the works for two other areas – between Myrtle and Oak streets on U.S. 90, a city responsibility; and at I-110 and U.S. 90, where MDOT has a contract in place to repair lights as part of lighting repairs on the I-110 highrise.

Nearly 180 of the 250 or so pre-Katrina street lights on U.S. 90 in Biloxi were restored in December 2005, when the four-lane boulevard was fully re-opened to traffic.

Meanwhile, Gulfport officials have yet to announce when they plan to replace the lights on U.S. 90 in their city, which has remained in the dark since hurricane Katrina. The stark contrast of light at night between the adjacent cities continues to be a reminder that Gulfport appears to be falling behind in beachfront Katrina recovery.

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