Oct 132016
 
State Rep. Walt Leger holds his new baby daughter, Kate, while standing with his wife, Danielle, at Monday's fundraiser. (Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

State Rep. Walt Leger holds his new baby daughter, Kate, while standing with his wife, Danielle, at Monday’s fundraiser. (Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

In a passionate speech that made frequent references to his seven-week old daughter Kate, State Rep Walt Leger laid out his vision for New Orleans and Louisiana’s future to a packed, appreciative audience of business, tourism and political leaders at his fundraiser Monday night. With a rousing introduction by Mayor Mitch Landrieu, Leger delivered what could easily be considered an opening salvo in the 2017 mayor’s race. Continue reading »

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Oct 102016
 
(Illustration by Owen Courreges)

(Illustration by Owen Courreges)

Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Boys and girls, ladies and germs – please sit down and let me regale you with the tale of Sebastian the Streetcar, second cousin twice-removed to Thomas the Tank Engine.™ Sebastian was a custom-built streetcar in New Orleans operating on the Loyola and Canal lines, but more than anything Sebastian wanted to help forge the new streetcar line down the other end of the French Quarter.

One day, Sebastian journeyed down Loyola to City Hall, where the leader of the city performed his business – Mayor Needum Toupee. Clad in his dark black suit, the resolute chief executive trod out to meet the plucky little streetcar. Continue reading »

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Oct 072016
 
Members of the Audubon Riverside Neighborhood Association relax after their annual Easter egg hunt at Alma Peters Park in 2012.(UptownMessenger.com file photo)

Members of the Audubon Riverside Neighborhood Association relax after their annual Easter egg hunt at Alma Peters Park in 2012.(UptownMessenger.com file photo)

By Claire Byun

Audubon neighborhood are hoping to kickstart a process to cool down some extra hot playground equipment in a park off Annunciation Street. Continue reading »

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Oct 062016
 
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Although the November elections for president, U.S. Senator, Congress and other races are still more than a month away, political insiders are already looking ahead to next year’s campaigns when a new mayor, city council and other municipal office-holders will be elected in the fall 2017 but take office in the spring of 2018. There will be several judicial races in March 2017 as well. Continue reading »

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Oct 042016
 
The building at 3101 Erato Street, photographed in April 2016. (via Google Maps)

The building at 3101 Erato Street, photographed in April 2016. (via Google Maps)

By Claire Byun

A proposed low-barrier homeless shelter marketed as key to reducing the city’s homeless population is already drawing fire from school and community groups. Continue reading »

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Oct 032016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

So this cement truck, a Landrieu Cement Truck, was filling in this gigantic pothole on Mexico Street. It’s this company owned by the mayor’s cousin that contracts with the city. Anyway, while it was filling in this massive hole in the pavement, another sinkhole opened up and the cement truck fell in.

I know what you’re thinking: What’s the punchline?

Well, although this sounds like the setup for a joke, it’s actually not. It happened this past week, much to the chagrin of the residents of Pontchartrain Park. Continue reading »

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Sep 282016
 
The boundaries of the proposed Uptown historic district are in blue. (via City of New Orleans)

The boundaries of the proposed Uptown historic district are in blue. (via City of New Orleans)

A new oversight structure for historic homes in much of Uptown and Carrollton easily moved forward to the New Orleans City Council for a final decision on Tuesday, after the City Planning Commission swiftly voted in favor of recommendations that have been pending for most of the year. Continue reading »

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Sep 282016
 
Jean-Paul Villere

Jean-Paul Villere

Tuesday morning I awoke abruptly just before 4 a.m. from a dream.  Convinced I was awake for the day, I decided to send a few emails.  While clacking out my correspondence in the dead silence of pre-dawn I heard in the not-too-far distance successive gunshots.  I thought it was about eight rounds.  Maybe it was seven.  But does it even matter how many there were?  I called 911.  They took my location, name, etc.  Then I went for a run.  And this is normal in New Orleans.  At least for now. Continue reading »

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Sep 262016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Slippery slope arguments have a deservedly bad reputation. They’re generally too abstract to be useful, bypassing the merits of the actual policy being discussed in favor of perceived consequences if society happens to take a principle too far, thus presuming a progression that is not logically inevitable.

On the other hand, slippery slopes do happen. If a strong argument can be made that one action or policy is a catalyst for a parade of awfulness, it may well be prudent to refrain from lighting that particular match. Continue reading »

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Sep 222016
 
Jay Dardenne speaks to the Bureau of Governmental Research in New Orleans on Thursday morning. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Jay Dardenne speaks to the Bureau of Governmental Research in New Orleans on Thursday morning. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne told the Bureau of Governmental Research today that the state will have no choice but to make additional cuts to departments and agencies of state government starting in January 2017 to balance the budget for the remainder of the fiscal year that ends June 30. It’s simply a matter of cash flow, Dardenne explained. Continue reading »

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Sep 162016
 
The building at 4310 Magazine Street will become an expansion of Ecole Bilingue, as Peaches Records has now moved into the larger building next door. (image via Google)

The building at 4310 Magazine Street will become an expansion of Ecole Bilingue, as Peaches Records has now moved into the larger building next door. (image via Google)

The former Top Drawer annex building on Magazine Street will become an expansion site for Ecole Bilingue de la Nouvelle Orleans, and the school will hold a meeting tonight to share its plans with neighbors. Continue reading »

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Sep 152016
 
A rendering of the play yard planned for Stuart Hall School for Boys on South Carrollton Avenue (via City of New Orleans)

A rendering of the play yard planned for Stuart Hall School for Boys on South Carrollton Avenue (via City of New Orleans)

The house at 2014-2018 South Carrollton will be demolished to make way for the play yard. (via City of New Orleans)

The house at 2014-2018 South Carrollton will be demolished to make way for the play yard. (via City of New Orleans)

Stuart Hall School for Boys easily won approval for its plan to replace a vacant home on South Carrollton Avenue with a new play yard, even though the request renewed neighbors’ complaints about traffic that have been festering for more than a decade. Continue reading »

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Sep 152016
 
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

As Election Day grows closer, there is lots of political jockeying at the national and local level. Hillary Clinton has decided to be more open about her health, Donald Trump is calling for paid maternity leave and tax credits for working parents, and Sept. 16 birthday boy Governor John Bel Edwards is making progress after two relatively successful trips to Washington to help flood victims. Continue reading »

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Sep 142016
 
The building at 8201 Oak Street will house Simone's Market, opening in fall 2016. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The building at 8201 Oak Street will house Simone’s Market, opening in fall 2016. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Acknowledging the desire for more neighborhood-based full-service groceries, the New Orleans City Council lavished praise over Simone’s Market slated to open this fall. Continue reading »

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Sep 122016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

There is a strain of thought in some police circles that cops need the ability to charge citizens with a crime for doing nothing more than disrespecting them. In order to command respect on the streets, the trope goes, mouthing off to a cop can’t be tolerated.

This pernicious notion is the source of much police misconduct, and it persists to this day. Continue reading »

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Sep 082016
 
Orleans Parish Assessor Erroll Williams speaks to Jefferson Avenue residents on Thursday evening at First Unitarian Universalist Church of New Orleans. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Orleans Parish Assessor Erroll Williams speaks to Jefferson Avenue residents on Thursday evening at First Unitarian Universalist Church of New Orleans. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Should the residents who live along the Uptown corridors that have been blocked for years amid the construction of major new drainage canals also be subject to substantial increases in their property taxes this year? Or do the inconveniences they suffer diminish the value of their homes enough to stave off the higher taxes until construction is complete?

Those competing points of view formed the basis for a sometimes-contentious meeting Thursday night between City Councilwoman Susan Guidry, Orleans Parish Assessor Erroll Williams, and a room full of Jefferson Avenue residents. Continue reading »

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Sep 082016
 
State Rep. Helena Moreno and Orleans Parish School Board member Nolan Marshall speak during last night's meeting of local Democrats. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

State Rep. Helena Moreno and Orleans Parish School Board member Nolan Marshall speak during last night’s meeting of local Democrats. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus

For the first time in many years, the Orleans Parish Democratic Executive Committee gave candidates an opportunity to meet with their voting members prior to their upcoming endorsement meeting. Last night’s meeting brought out more than a dozen candidates for U.S. Senate, Congress, various judgeships and the Orleans Parish School Board. They distributed hand cards and football schedules while pouring on the charisma and munching on finger sandwiches. Continue reading »

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