County Planning Commission approves expansion of International Guest House

Published 12:31 pm Tuesday, May 24, 2022

OXFORD, Miss. — The Lafayette County Planning Commission voted to grant a conditional use permit to the International Guest House to build a new, modernized housing facility that will include 12 new bedrooms for students.

The facility, which serves as a Christian ministry for international students at the University of Mississippi, currently has five bedrooms in the existing building with some students housed in other buildings on the property.

Bill MacKenzie, who runs the International Guest House, said the current building does not fully meet the basic living standards he wishes to provide for students.

“The intent here is to replace our existing facility, which is outdated and was never fully up to the standards that we like to provide for our students, and replace it with a modernized structure,” said Bill MacKenzie, who runs the International Guest House.

Local residents raised concerns about outdoor events at the facility such as weddings and parties that include loud music and hundreds of guests, but MacKenzie assured them that the International Guest House is not a performance venue and will restrict the playing of loud music.

The Commission approved the creation of the facility so long as MacKenzie keeps noise levels down, prevents livestock from escaping the facility and wandering onto adjoining properties and ensures an adequate water supply.

The project will go before the Lafayette County Board of Supervisors on June 20 for final approval.