GULFPORT -- Gulfbreeze Landscaping of Gautier submitted the lowest bid of $250,191 to build Fishbone Alley downtown, patterned after popular Printer's Alley in Nashville.
The City Council will be asked Tuesday to approve a contract with Gulfbreeze to transform the alley into a pedestrian walkway that will feature brick pavers from the downtown streets of 1905, overhead lighting, vertical landscaping and art. The city received five bids.
Plans are to turn the alley into an attractive environment for pedestrians who are dining and seeing the sights downtown.
Fishbone Alley sits between historic buildings on 26th and 27th avenues. The courtyards of several restaurants and bars will open onto Fishbone Alley. A New Orleans developer also is building upscale apartments off the alley in a building on 27th Avenue.
The contract also will allow for cleanup of a service alley between 25th and 26th avenues, including pavement and improved drainage.
Once the work begins, as early as mid-December, it will take about three months, said Dax Alexander of Brown, Mitchell & Alexander Inc, in Gulfport, the project engineers.
Fishbone Alley is the third piece to post-Katrina renovations and additions that have helped bring businesses and restaurants to a downtown that was languishing before the hurricane. Federal Community Development Block Grants have provided about $12.6 million for the work. The grants allowed the city to restore historic facades on downtown buildings, landscape, install irrigation, improve drainage, add lights and make other improvements downtown.