Popular Miss. Campground Faces Expansion

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May 20, 2013 by   - () Leave a Comment

A view of some of the RV sites at Timberlake Campground on the Ross Barnett Reservoir in Mississippi.

The Timberlake Campground in Central Mississippi is the place to be for tourists, commuters, retirees and transitioning families.

So much so that more than 250 people are waiting for the chance to pitch a tent or set up an RV near the Ross Barnett Reservoir, the Jackson (Miss.) Clarion-Ledger reported.

As a result, the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District has proposed expanding the campground to meet demand while generating revenue to maintain district parks. When word got out, Reservoir leaseholders expressed concern at a recent public meeting not related to the campground.

After learning about the comprehensive master plan survey results, residents peppered district board members with questions and complaints about what the expansion could bring.

Some say Timberlake would turn into a trailer park, drive down property values and increase the odds of sexual predators observing children at the neighboring YMCA. Concerns on a Jackson Jambalaya blog post are mixed — increase the rates, limit monthly campers and how county tax dollars going to the Rankin County School District would be handled.

PRV Executive Director John Sigman said the board likely will discuss the expansion at a meeting in a few months and will “heavily” consider leaseholder concerns in the decision process.

“I think one should look at the demographics of the camping public,” Sigman said in an email. “Often these campers can cost $250,000 and up. And most campers have a residence elsewhere. We spend a lot of time preventing Timberlake from turning into a trailer park.”

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