Robert Morris

Aug 152013
 

More than half of the streetlights along St. Charles Avenue are broken, burned out or missing, members of the residents’ association discovered after a recent count, according to a report by Bill Capo and our partners at WWL-TV. City officials say they are installing temporary lights, and that the streetlights will get new wiring at the end of the streetcar track construction project, Capo reports.

Aug 142013
 

The memorial to Officer Rodney Thomas in the Second District roll call room, where officers gather before each shift. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The memorial to Officer Rodney Thomas in the Second District roll call room, where officers gather before each shift. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

NOPD Officer Rodney Thomas

NOPD Officer Rodney Thomas

NOPD Second District Officer Rodney Thomas — who was killed last month in a hit-and-run crash on the interstate — had previously suffered heavy damage to his house during the flooding after Hurricane Katrina. Previously trained as an electrician, Thomas was doing all the renovations himself — work that his family does not know how they can finish with him gone, said Second District Commander Paul Noel.

“Not only was Rodney the sole breadwinner for his family, but now they have a house that’s unfinished,” Noel said. Continue reading »

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Aug 132013
 
A cockatoo sits on the back patio of Victor Atkins' home in the 3400 block of Laurel Street on Tuesday afternoon. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

A cockatoo sits on the back patio of Victor Atkins’ home in the 3400 block of Laurel Street on Tuesday afternoon. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Living just a few blocks from the Mississippi River, Victor Atkins is used to hearing a lot of strange bird calls at his Laurel Street home. But Monday, one particularly piercing cry caught his attention — and his wife realized it was coming from their backyard.

“He has a big voice,” Atkins said. “His screech sounds like a pteradactyl.” Continue reading »

Aug 122013
 

The leadership of Lycée Français de la Nouvelle Orléans continued to evolve Monday night as the new school board decided to add a seventh member their predecessors had previously rejected, heard from a unified school community that no parents should be added to the board, met a new academic director and began setting concrete goals for the coming year. Continue reading »

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Aug 122013
 

Crowds gather in front of The Company Burger on Freret St. as owner Adam Biderman hands out hamburgers for free Thursday, Sept. 3, 2012, while most of Uptown waits for power to come back. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Sabree Hill)

Freret Neighbors United president Andrew Amacker talks with residents during a crowded neighborhood meeting about a security-district proposal at Samuel J. Green Charter School. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Robert Morris)

When more than 100 Freret residents gathered in the Samuel J. Green Charter School cafeteria in March to discuss a proposal to use a property-tax fee to hire private security guards for the neighborhood, the meeting had every appearance of a textbook example of gentrification and its painful fallout. Two white people sat at a table marked “FOR,” two African-Americans sat at a table marked “AGAINST,” and a room full of other black residents argued bitterly against what they saw as the secrecy of the proposal, about their sense of disenfranchisement amid an influx of “new residents,” and about the rising costs of merely remaining in their homes.

Given the explosion of commercial growth on Freret Street — from only a single restaurant four years ago to 14 blocks of highly-lauded cuisine, new entertainment venues and businesses ranging from a dog-groomer to a craft-cocktail lounge — concerns about gentrification should be expected. But after that heated meeting in March, the proponents and opponents literally walked away from the school building together down the sidewalk, relying on relationships and respect forged over decades to find a middle ground — suggesting that, perhaps, something is different about what’s happening on Freret. Continue reading »

Aug 092013
 

Wanda Rouzan leads a procession down Magazine Street to the newly opened St. Katherine Drexel Prep. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Just a few short months ago, a group of Xavier Prep alumni promised students that, despite what seemed at the time like insurmountable obstacles, they would proudly return to campus as the Yellow Jackets in the fall.

Call it an act of faith, call it the “Miracle on Magazine Street,” but on Friday morning, with a procession around the block and an invocation from an archibishop, the founders of the new St. Katharine Drexel Prep made good on their promise.

“This could have been a funeral march,” said Dale Atkins. “This is not a funeral. This is not a wake. This is truly a celebration.” Continue reading »

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Aug 082013
 

The home in the 3000 block of Danneel where a 42-year-old man was fatally shot in what police believe may have been a robbery gone bad. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Jonathan Joseph (via NOPD)

Jamar Armstrong (via NOPD)

A man gunned down at a Danneel Street home was likely the victim of a robbery attempt gone wrong, investigators say, and they have now arrested two men on murder charges in the case. Continue reading »

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Aug 082013
 

Jimmy Anselmo thanks the City Council for approving his request to reopen Jimmy’s Music Club on Willow Street. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

After nearly a year of struggle and discord, Jimmy’s Music Club received permission Thursday afternoon from the New Orleans City Council to reopen in a flurry of smiles, applause, blown kisses — and a long list of operating conditions. Continue reading »

Aug 082013
 

Members of the City Council and the New Orleans Police Department present the family of Officer Rodney Thomas (wearing blue shirts) with a resolution honoring his sacrifice for the city. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

With a resolution in his honor and words of encouragement for his family, the New Orleans City Council pledged Thursday morning to ensure the sacrifice of Officer Rodney Thomas has a permanent place in the city’s memory. Continue reading »