A new interstate passing through DeSoto County was expected to bring more business and residential growth. Planners with the city of Hernando and the county say they are ready to map out that growth and configure how it will affect their areas.
Bennie Hopkins, Director of the Planning and Building Department for DeSoto County, and Keith Briley, Director of Planning for the City of Hernando, discussed how the new I-269 corridor will impact the county and the county seat during Tuesday’s First Quarterly Luncheon of the Hernando Main Street Chamber of Commerce at 1 Memphis Street in Hernando.
Briley spoke about the three areas that Hernando will be impacted by the new interstate: Tulane Road, McIngvale Road, and Getwell Road.
In most cases, there will be commercial, mixed-use and residential zones around the interchanges and Briley indicated where those areas are located, such as around Getwell Road and I-269, which is in the Hernando city limits.
“As we look at some of these concepts, like mixed-use and planned commercial, most of us are familiar with what planned-commercial looks like,” Briley said. “If you look at Southaven and what is south of Goodman on the east side of the interstate, that’s planned-commercial. It’s like a small city unto itself. You have various retail areas with different architectural features, the different shape of buildings and you have a lot of pedestrian access.”
Hopkins laid out figures to indicate the continued population growth in DeSoto County through building permit numbers and the growth in subdivisions. He also explained how his department and the Board of Supervisors had put in motion an I-269 corridor plan to show how the county wanted to see the land developed.
“The first case for rezoning that we experienced in the planning department in the county was the southwest corner of Laughter Road and I-269,” Hopkins said. “Barry Bridgforth wanted to make a request for commercial zoning, which I would have expected as a planner for anyone that wants around this corridor.”
After negotiations and several meetings that included the Board of Supervisors, Hopkins said C-2 zoning was agreed to.
Hopkins said the development will continue to be a process, a collaboration “to do the best we can.”
Bob Bakken is Staff Writer for the DeSoto Times-Tribune