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Biloxi Approaching $1 Billion in Post-Katrina Building Permits
From: City of Biloxi   Vincent Creel  Filed 10/30/07  GCN

Biloxi will soon pass the billion-dollar mark in post-Katrina construction permits, Mayor A.J. Holloway has announced.

The city issued more than $977 million in construction permits in the 26 months after Hurricane Katrina, with more than half of those permits issued for non-casino and non-condo construction.

“The number is expected to continue to increase, and increase dramatically,” Holloway said today, noting that only a fraction of the multi-million-dollar Margaritaville project has received permits at this point.

Biloxi’s Community Development Department has issued nearly 20,000 permits of one type or another since Katrina. Of the $977 million value in permits, more than $532 million is non-casino and non-condo construction.

Holloway noted, however, that only $49.7 million in permits have been issued for new homes, which translates into 331 new homes permitted since Katrina.

“Keep in mind we lost 6,000 homes and businesses as a result of the storm,” the mayor said, “so we have a ways to go. But we’re getting there. Everyone knows the issues – the cost of insurance, if you can get insurance, the cost of construction, and the new flood elevations.”

The mayor pointed out that Keesler is in the midst of the largest military housing construction project in the history of the Air Force, which will see 1,067 new housing units built, and the Biloxi Housing Authority continues to make progress on restoration of its Hope VI project and plans for more than 1,000 additional housing units in Biloxi.

More online: Mayor Holloway touched on the myriad issues and progress of the rebuilding process during a recent speech to the Gulfport Business Club. To see the text of his presentation, click here.

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