Bay Harbor project births unexpected benefit - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Bay Harbor project births unexpected benefit

BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) -

The $20 million harbor marina now under construction in Bay St. Louis will bring with it an unexpected bonus: It's given city leaders a chance to create a new outdoor venue to attract more tourists.

Officials say the natural design of the marina and the nearby seawall will allow them to create an un-planned amphitheater on the beach front.

A large area of the harbor that protrudes out into the Bay will eventually be covered with concrete. It's normal function will be a loading dock for boaters. But city leaders have identified an additional use.

"It will be utilizable as an events deck," said Bay St. Louis Mayor Les Fillingame.

The nearby seawall, built for shoreline protection, will also serve a dual purpose.

"The seawall, just by it's nature, is going to a very natural amphitheater type seating area. And the way that they constructed the seawall like a stadium step, it's got a 2 foot tread and a one foot step, will make it very functional for seating for those who want to come into the harbor area for events, and have the main acts on the events stage facing inland, " explained Fillingame.

The mayor said the area will be able to seat more than 2,000 people. An extra benefit from the harbor project, he said, will help grow the economy.

"The events deck is going to be a very functional place for major events to happen. Major music events, major festival type events."

Some downtown merchants are excited about the idea.

"The more things that we can have going on in Hancock County, the better it is for everybody - businesses, hotels, restaurants," said Jeremy Burke, the owner of Bay Books.

Other merchants aren't so sure.

"I grew up in New England and most towns up there have harbors. So I fully support the harbor concept and having a harbor," said merchant Laurianne Anne Manchester, who owns a Travel Agency as well as Fiesta Gift Shop on Main Street.

"I think the only concern as a merchant is if all the events are held in the harbor, how will we remain inclusive? How this area of Main Street will remain viable and a place people will come up to during the events? It could be a problem we would have to work together as a community to solve."

 But the mayor said anything that brings more people in will bring more dollars in.

The Harbor Marina is expected to be finished in May of next year, but could open a little sooner because right now the project is running ahead of scheduled.

Copyright 2013 WLOX. All rights reserved.

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Sales tax break on hurricane items this weekend

    Sales tax break on hurricane items this weekend

    Saturday, May 27 2017 11:18 PM EDT2017-05-28 03:18:29 GMT
    (Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)(Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)

    Flashlights, tarps, fuel cans, and lanterns. These are just some of the many items Carolyn Trahan sells at Trahan Hardware. With hurricane season approaching, Trahan and her employees like Jeremy Jolviette are usually selling these types of items right before a hurricane. "Everyone is trying to get prepared for it," said Jolviette. The Louisiana Department of Revenue has declared this weekend a hurricane preparedness sales tax holiday. All hurrica...

    More >>

    Flashlights, tarps, fuel cans, and lanterns. These are just some of the many items Carolyn Trahan sells at Trahan Hardware. With hurricane season approaching, Trahan and her employees like Jeremy Jolviette are usually selling these types of items right before a hurricane. "Everyone is trying to get prepared for it," said Jolviette. The Louisiana Department of Revenue has declared this weekend a hurricane preparedness sales tax holiday. All hurrica...

    More >>
  • Lake Charles opens time capsule buried 50 years ago

    Saturday, May 27 2017 3:16 PM EDT2017-05-27 19:16:59 GMT
    (Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)(Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)

    On Friday Mayor Randy Roach helped pull out history - 50 years worth, to be exact.

    In 1967 a time capsule was buried in front of historic Lake Charles City Hall, and many had different ideas of what could be buried inside. 

    More >>

    On Friday Mayor Randy Roach helped pull out history - 50 years worth, to be exact.

    In 1967 a time capsule was buried in front of historic Lake Charles City Hall, and many had different ideas of what could be buried inside. 

    More >>
  • Summer reading fun underway in Calcasieu Parish

    Summer reading fun underway in Calcasieu Parish

    Friday, May 26 2017 11:02 PM EDT2017-05-27 03:02:13 GMT
    (Source: Calcasieu Parish Public Library)(Source: Calcasieu Parish Public Library)

    The Calcasieu Parish Public Library annual summer reading program is underway. The kick-off celebration was held at Prien Lake Park. It included registration, face painting, kite flying, bird house building and even Clifford the Big Red Dog. The reading program runs from now until July 7.

    More >>

    The Calcasieu Parish Public Library annual summer reading program is underway. The kick-off celebration was held at Prien Lake Park. It included registration, face painting, kite flying, bird house building and even Clifford the Big Red Dog. The reading program runs from now until July 7.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly