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$2.6 million awarded for Gulfport bridge construction

Photo courtesy of TeleSouth Communications Inc.

A $2.6 million grant has been awarded to the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

U.S. Senator Roger Wicker and Congressman Steven Palazzo announced the award of a $2.6 million project grant from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) which will aid in the construction of a 1,100-foot pedestrian and bus bridge above Highway 90 in downtown Gulfport.

The bridge will connect the Gulfport Transit Authority’s Multimodal Transportation Center to Jones Park and the new Mississippi Aquarium. After the announcement, Palazzo discussed how this project will aid in the revamping effort on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

“The funding for construction of this pedestrian bridge has been under discussion for several years, and approval of this grant project is a down payment toward its future completion. After engaging with the Director of the DOT’s Federal Transit Authority, Jane Williams, we’ve successfully closed on a long-term deal that will bring economic benefits to downtown Gulfport. The city of Gulfport is actively revitalizing itself and I believe this bridge will be useful for local residents and visiting tourists to access our beautiful beaches and the downtown Gulfport area,” Palazzo said.

Wicker echoed the sentiments of Congressman Palazzo and stated that this grant shows that the FTA recognizes the importance of this project and what it will do for residents and tourists.

“This construction grant is great news for the people of Gulfport as they work to attract visitors and new businesses to the Mississippi Gulf Coast,” Wicker said. “This bridge will serve as a vital connector for Jones Park, downtown Gulfport, and the new Mississippi Aquarium, marking a key expansion in the city’s transit infrastructure. This project has been years in the making, with local leaders putting forward a strong application that demonstrated the need for these federal resources.  I have long been supportive of this project and am glad to see FTA also recognizes its merit.”

Kevin Coggin, Executive Director of the Coast Transit Authority, thanked the Congressman and Senator for their support of the project.

“This Tram Bridge project will improve public transit service, provide safe pedestrian access across Highway 90 to Jones Park and support economic development associated with the new Mississippi Aquarium,” Coggin said. “I want to thank Senator Wicker and Congressman Palazzo for their continuing support of this project.”

No completion date for the project was given, and the total cost is expected to be around $9.8 million. The FTA project grant award will help fund the first phases of the project, including design and engineering.

When completed, buses and pedestrians will be able to access the bridge from 15th Street and connect to 21st Avenue in Jones Park.

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