Changes in the way people shop and dine are bringing new businesses to South Mississippi and encouraging owners to remodel and add new features.
Thursday’s grand opening of Roses Express discount store, next to Rouses Market on Pass Road in Gulfport, gave shoppers a look at what manager Chris Wessleman describes as a wholesale discount store. It has more apparel than a dollar store and a variety of housewares, holiday decorations, toys, electronics and other departments.
“I’m so glad you got one here,” a customers said as she came in the door. The only other store in the Southeastern chain in the state is in Jackson.
Rouses added grocery delivery to its offerings this year, which lets customers shop online and have their groceries brought to their home or office. Crews have begun renovating the former Winn-Dixie store, just to the west on Pass Road, to become a new and updated Rouses.
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Waitr food delivery service, which started in the Biloxi and Gulfport area, has added Bay St. Louis and Pass Christian to its service area. The company’s app lets customers order from the menus of their favorite restaurants, and the Waitr driver delivers for a flat fee of $5. The company said it now has more than 175 restaurants in the area, and all-local staff and drivers.
Announcements of new and renovated businesses are coming every week in 2018. The largest building permit issued in the last month, according to the Treen Report, is $1.4 million to turn what was a grill into the 24th Sugar Factory American Brasserie in the world.
Boomtown Casino also was given a permit for an undisclosed amount to convert its steakhouse into an Old Saint restaurant and sports bar as part of the casino’s new sports betting.
Over the last month, $5 million in building permits were issued across the Coast, according to the Treen Report. In addition to the casino restaurants, the major projects are:
▪ $900,000 for a Brick & Spoon restaurant outside Edgewater Mall. The building off Eisenhower Drive also will house Kay Jewelers and Verizon Wireless.
▪ $711,000 for the shell of a new building at 8927 Lorraine Road, Gulfport
▪ $600,000 for a new office for Fletcher Building Material/Rental at 3311 Shortcut Road, Pascagoula
▪ $400,000 for a mixed-use retail, office, residential by Fritz Development, 130 Croesus St., Biloxi
▪ $400,000 for renovation of six fire-damaged units at Waveview Apartments, Waveland
▪ $150,000 for renovation by University of Mississippi at 1721 Medical Park Drive, Biloxi
▪ $75,000 for renovation of MS Gulf Coast MLS, 141 DeBuys Road, Gulfport
By the numbers
That brings the total of permits listed year-to-date in the Treen Report to $185 million across South Mississippi.
Biloxi’s construction is running $28 million ahead of this time last year, reports Jerry Creel, community development director.
The Development Review Committee has heard plans for a new restaurant and bar at the former Torricelli Motors building at 663 Howard Avenue and a Chevron gas station and convenience store at 15100 Mississippi 67.
In D’Iberville, Kim Compton, director of economic development, said she and City Manager Clay Jones attended a shopping center convention in Atlanta and continue to meet with retailers considering opening stores just to the west of The Promenade.
While more people shop online, she said the stores at The Promenade and Sangani Boulevard got off to a very busy Christmas shopping season on Thanksgiving night and the crowds continued all weekend.
Of all cities in Mississippi with a population over 10,000, she said D’Iberville is No. 1 per capita in sales tax receipts.
Ray Brandt, which already has several dealerships on the north side of I-10 in D’Iberville, is adding a Nissan, she said, and the council recently approved a plan by DMN Associates to convert apartments at 12351 Lamey Bridge Road into condominiums.
“The next big project will be the widening of Popp’s Ferry Road,” she said, starting on D’Iberville Boulevard and going west. “It will open up all that property for development,” she said.
In west Harrison County, the remains of what was a condo project has been demolished. The Village at Henderson Point was destroyed during Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Construction began on a new project in 2007 and was abandoned a year later.
Businesses opening on the Coast are:
Nov. 29 – South Mississippi Smiles, 4105 Hospital Road, Pascagoula
Nov. 30 – Bright Eyed Brew Co., a new coffee shop, 623 Washington Ave., Ocean Springs
Nov. 30 – Central Station Bistro, 205 Central Ave., Bay St. Louis
Nov. 30 – Remodeled Chick-fil-A, 11001 U.S. 49, Gulfport
Dec. 5 – Popcorn Plus store near carousel at Edgewater Mall, 2600 Beach Blvd., Biloxi
Dec. 5 – Brushes Salon, 15007 Creosote Road, Gulfport
Dec. 5 — West Biloxi Boardwalk
Dec. 6 – Home Choice Health Services, Biloxi
Dec. 8 – PJ’s Coffee of Bay St. Louis
Dec. 14 – Matt Harkins State Farm, 2723 Pass Road, Biloxi
Dec. 18 – Make it Shine Cleaning, 440 East Pass Road, Gulfport