In February 2006, six months after Hurricane Katrina devastated our community, I announced the launching of the Reviving the Renaissance initiative, a process that would help guide the city’s long-term recovery from this catastrophic natural disaster.
I chose to call this effort “Reviving the Renaissance” to follow up on Gov. Haley Barbour’s challenge that the people of south Mississippi should create a renaissance as part of our recovery.
In Biloxi, we were enjoying unprecedented prosperity and opportunity in the decade or so before Katrina. We didn’t see a need to create a renaissance, we needed to revive the one we had before the storm.
More than 200 Biloxi residents answered the call to serve, devoting their time and talent on a half-dozen quality-of-life issue committees. We had a wealth of advice and input from a world-renowned panel of urban planners and architects who served on Governor’s Commission, and the RTR effort included the work of the national planning consortium Living Cities, which focused its efforts on east Biloxi.
Retired Air Force Gen. Clark Griffith, whom I tapped to steer the RTR initiative, made his initial report on time, 90 days after he was given this assignment.
Now, we unveil this effort. It offers a great deal of vision and hope for our future, which is indeed bright.
I appreciate the efforts of all involved, and I’m confident that, to paraphrase William Faulkner, we will not only endure but prevail.
Click on the links above to read more about the visions and hopes for our community.
We ’re on the way back.
Mayor of Biloxi