City Tasks Regional Commission to Carry Out 24-Month Review Related to Keesler AFB

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), chairman of the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, today announced the award of a $214,000 grant to the City of Biloxi to analyze land use issues affecting Keesler Air Force Base.

The Department of Defense Office of Economic Adjustment award will support a 24-month Joint Land Use Study to review issues related to potential effects of future growth for Biloxi, Keesler and the surrounding area. Combined with $23,000 from the Mississippi Development Authority, a total of $238,000 will be available for the study.

“This Joint Land Use Study is part of ongoing work by the city, state and Air Force to ensure beneficial growth for both Keesler and surrounding communities,” Cochran said. “We’re proud that Keesler is in South Mississippi and this review should provide good information to sustain the mutual interests of the Air Force and Biloxi.”

The City of Biloxi has tasked the Gulf Regional Planning Commission to oversee the study, which will also involve the City of D’Iberville and Harrison County. The Commission plans to request proposals from qualified planners in November.

The Biloxi City Council in July approved a resolution authorizing the city to serve as a sponsor for this study.

Joint Land Use Studies are used by the Department of Defense to involve local stakeholders, such as local governments, in finding compatible development patterns that complement the mission of a military base and its host community. The Biloxi study will consider the issues such as height, density, encroachment, noise abatement and other factors.