Wednesday, February 29, 2012

U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker in Ocean Springs to Present Award to Cottages at Oak Park

Cherie Ward
The Mississippi Press

This article is cross-posted from GulfLife.com.

U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker will tour the Cottages at Oak Park in downtown Ocean Springs at 2 p.m. today and presented the development team with the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED Platinum award.

It's the organization's highest level certification of energy efficiency and environmentally responsible construction.

Guests tour the recently finished Cottages at Oak Park
in Ocean Springs, MS during a ribbon cutting
ceremony on Thursday, August 11, 2011.
(Joshua Dahl, Correspondent)
"The Cottages at Oak Park is a great example of how to rebuild after a terrible disaster like Hurricane Katrina," Wicker said. "These cottages are built structurally superior to a typical home, providing a safe place for residents to live and qualifying for lower insurance rates. Affordability is also enhanced by building at the cottage scale in close-in locations and with energy-efficient techniques and materials. It's a winning combination that reduces residents' monthly power bills and transportation costs."

Wicker will be joined by representatives from Gov. Phil Bryant's office, the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency and the city of Ocean Springs.

Bryant said, "The need for quality, affordable housing on the Gulf Coast grew after Hurricane Katrina, and I am pleased to know that this development will not only help satisfy that need but has achieved LEED Platinum certification."

Bill Brown, MEMA deputy director, said his agency "is very pleased how this Cottage Community came together, and we are excited to see the Cottages at Second Street in Pass Christian, the sister neighborhood to Oak Park open in a couple of weeks."

Joe Cloyd, a member of the Cottages at Oak Park and Second Street development team, said the 2 neighborhoods, "provide examples of how a public and private partnership can work. Through this kind of partnership, residents can live in safe, green, affordable cottages and have the option to walk to surrounding businesses."

In addition to the Cottages at Oak Park achieving LEED Platinum Certification, the neighborhood also became the first in Ocean Springs to be designated as part of the Renaissance Guild.

Kim LaRosa, President of the Gulf Coast Renaissance Corporation, said, "the Renaissance Guild is a collection of developments along the Mississippi Gulf Coast that are walkable, aesthetically superior developments built to ensure the residents have a safe, energy efficient place to live. These cottages meet and exceed the Renaissance Guild criteria."

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