Lined with tall black tarps billowing over chain link fences, what was once Prytania Street between Octavia and Nashville now looks like a discarded set from an old episode of the X-Files. Gray mud seeps from under the fence, and strange sounds emanate from behind the tarps, but it is anyone’s guess what could actually be taking place back there.
Two-story black tarps around the drainage-canal construction site on Prytania Street in Uptown New Orleans create dark tunnels that residents must walk through after parking blocks from their home, creating a scenario so unbearable that neighbors begged officials Tuesday night to drop the project altogether and simply leave.
While abandoning the Prytania Street leg of the SELA project is not an option, officials with the city and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers promised that the work is now speeding up, with relief for residents in store in the weeks and months ahead.
Car2Go — a car-sharing service that allows drivers to rent small cars for on a per-minute or hourly basis for short trips around the city — continued its tour of New Orleans neighborhoods Monday night in the Lower Garden District, explaining its services and the parking agreement it hopes to reach with the city.
Another week passes, and another vapid, unthinking ordinance begins snaking its way through the city council.
This round, it’s a “living wage” ordinance recently introduced by Councilman Jared Brossett. At a legislative breakfast held earlier this month, Brossett depicted the law as a palliative for New Orleans’ notorious and persistent epidemic of poverty.
“Income inequality — I don’t need to tell y’all this. It’s vast. I mean, we were compared to Zambia, as far as income inequality,” Brossett said. “That is ridiculous, as we are part of one of the richest and strongest nations on this planet.”
The majority of the repairs needed to an underground sewer line that was causing part of Magazine Street to sink should finished by Monday, but the street will remain closed to most drivers near Third Street through the weekend, officials said.
A number of lane shifts and detours around the intersection of South Carrollton and South Claiborne are planned for Saturday and Sunday to allow repairs to several nearby water lines, according to the Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans.
Two busy blocks of Magazine Street — between Second and Fourth streets along the Garden District and Irish Channel — will close for excavation Friday “until further notice,” the Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans announced.
By Lawson Box
While bar patrons have mixed feelings about the new citywide ban on smoking indoors, some university area bar owners say they are happy about the ordinance as they expect even more students to frequent local watering holes.
The Krewe of Proteus will roll at 4 p.m. today (Monday, Feb. 16), followed by the Krewe of Orpheus at 4:45 p.m., in changes to the parade schedule that New Orleans officials hope will avoid the rain that is expected this evening.
With plans for a rooftop lounge and a restored Silver Whistle coffee shop on the first floor, The Pontchartrain Hotel on St. Charles Avenue is intent on reclaiming its historic prominence in New Orleans, its owners say — right down to the classic blueberry muffins.
New Orleans has a troubling legacy to overcome when it comes to the condition of its rental homes, even though more than half the City’s residents are renters. Such conditions have wide-ranging effects on everything from health to educational outcomes. Many renters find themselves having to move because they can’t get dangerous housing conditions addressed. When people have to move a lot, neighborhood stability goes down and so does public safety.
In a City where rents have skyrocketed beyond the reach of many working families, New Orleans renters deserve assurances that the homes they live in meet basic standards of quality and safety. A rental registry program would be good for New Orleans and can be designed in a way that is not overly cumbersome for the many landlords in the City that are just trying to do the right thing.
Stacy Head did not appear happy this past week with her colleague on the city council, LaToya Cantrell. Without any real warning, Cantrell announced vague plans to rapidly introduce an ordinance to create a rental inspection bureaucracy with regular inspections and a comprehensive online database.
“I reiterate my position that this ordinance is not ready for introduction next week,” Head frustratedly wrote in an email to the council. “The lightning speed with which this is moving as well as the apparent insular nature of the discussion is disconcerting.”
A stretch of Camp Street through the Garden District will experience low water pressure Friday morning while the Sewerage & Water Board of New Orleans repairs a 4-inch water valve nearby, officials said.
I personally loathe either giving or receiving directions, particularly in New Orleans. With all the twists and turns in the Crescent City, it’s a sure bet that there’s at least one step where you’ll have to “bear” onto something or venture on some convoluted path to make a left turn, all the while cursing the lack of rhyme and reason to the whole mess.
It’s all part and parcel of living in a city established nearly three-hundred years ago along a winding river. The streets tend to take on a life of their own.
Now, sadly, it’s about to become ever more difficult to meander some streets of Uptown New Orleans. Yes, the City Planning Commission (CPC) has once again exhibited its total lack of purpose, this time by approving needless street name changes borne of local political horse-trading.
Before Mayor Mitch Landrieu took the podium for Friday’s grand opening ceremony at Martin Wine Cellar on Baronne Street, he had a very important question to ask.
“You’ve already got your lemonade?” Landrieu asked a patron in the crowd, noting her tall glass. He took the microphone, and continued, “I’m happy. You know how many times I came here when I was a kid to get a sandwich, how many Lindys I’ve eaten?”
The large vacant lot on Broadway Street near Earhart Boulevard in Gert Town that formerly held the Mary Church Terrell Elementary School received tentative approval this week to become the new New Orleans Police Department Second District station and a community pool.
Today marks the official grand re-opening of the recently totally redone Samuel Square playground in the 2100 block of Napoleon, though the caution tape was removed a few days ago. And wow! Akin to other nearby brightly colored and playful compositions of many reborn play areas (think Laurence Square but moreso the Danneel Playspot at Octavia and St Charles) this 21st century facelift to this centuries old green space does not disappoint. And being a parent to young children (and a also a tax-paying neighbor myself) just a few blocks away from Samuel Square my level of engagement is set to maximum. And for many reasons.
A proposal to add a restaurant at the Magnolia Mansion hotel on Prytania Street drew such vehement opposition from Garden District-area neighbors on Tuesday afternoon that the City Planning Commission overruled their own staffers to recommend against the project.
The Lyons Center will hold free painting workshops for people of all ages on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings this week, according to the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission.