Construction work keeping up good pace, officials say

Published 5:00 am Monday, September 18, 2000

Although the season is changing, local officials sayconstruction and economic development activity is maintaining ahealthy pace, and they are hopeful the trend will continue.

“It’s still pretty steady,” said Steve Moreton, Brookhavenbuilding inspector. “Usually, spring and early summer is when timesare busiest.”

However, several projects are getting under way or arecontinuing. One of the latest project generating a lot of publicinterest is the new Burger King on Brookway Boulevard.

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“It’s going to be a nice building with a new look,” Moretonsaid.

Architect Glenn Bell said crews are aiming to complete thebuilding before Thanksgiving. To do that, he said they will beworking during weekends and even during rainy periods ifneeded.

According to plans, the 2,859 square-foot building will belarger and will be positioned differently on the property. After anew pipe is laid in a nearby drainage ditch and the area paved,there will be a total of 52 parking spaces for the restaurant.

From a customer standpoint, a noticeable change will be a newdrive-thru set up.

“When you go to the drive-thru, you’ll exit onto BrookhavenStreet, go south and catch the (Brookway Boulevard traffic) light,”Moreton said.

Moreton mentioned several other projects that are about to beginor have just started.

Those include an addition at the First Assembly of God, a newday care addition for the Cornerstone Church on North Second Streetand completion of Brookway Boulevard site preparation work for Dr.Don Doty’s new dentist office.

Moreton said work is close to beginning on a new office complexat the site of the old L&A Auto Parts building on SouthRailroad, and the first house in Fisher Park on Halbert HeightsRoad is going in. And passersby are seeing more development at theBank of Brookhaven.

“It’s going to be a nice building,” Moreton said.

Walls are up and a new roof is on the new Social Security officeon Johnson Drive and it should be opening soon, Moreton said.

“A lot of projects are closing out,” Moreton said.

Moreton mentioned the completion of the new jail facility andcrews moving into for renovation of the existing jail areas. Also,Speciality Minerals Inc. is planning commemoration activities forSept. 25-26 at its location in the Industrial Park.

Other recently-opened developments include the newAllbritton-Sullivan Mazda dealership, a number of new shops inWal-Mart Plaza and Weeks Barber Shop on Highway 51. Also on thehighway, a new quick oil change and 24-hour car wash is close toopening.

“Of course, Whitworth and the high school projects are stillrolling,” Moreton said.

While construction work is moving forward, Brookhaven-LincolnCounty Chamber of Commerce officials are busy trying to lure newactivity to the area.

Chandler Russ, executive vice-president, was traveling to Dallasthis week as part of a Southwest Mississippi DevelopmentCorporation trip to meet with site consultants. The corporation isan 11-county alliance to promote the region for industriallocations.

“It’s to get our name in front of the site consultants workingon the various projects,” Russ said of the trip.

Brookhaven has been mentioned as a possible site for a newindustry that would employ about 125 people. Officials are notidentifying the industry but are close to finishing a proposal forit to locate here, Russ said.

“The city, county, chamber and Vision Partnership are working onthe proposals,” Russ said. “We feel like it’s a good, solidproposal.”

For other possible prospects, Russ said the chamber’s new andupdated Web site is about a month away from being ready. Also, thechamber is about two weeks away from having its new marketingmaterials.

“It’s pretty much got to be fine-tuned and tweaked before goingto the printers,” Russ said.

In other chamber happening, Russ estimated 45 differentactivities to promote Brookhaven are going on. Those range from OleBrook Festival preparations to industrial development to retireerecruitment to community appearance.

“We’re staying pretty busy,” Russ said.