Feb 062017
 

Transdev shows off the red EZ10 self-driving shuttle at the Ernest Morial Convention Center. (image via our partners at WWL-TV)

Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

New Orleans were given a glimpse of the future this past week, or at least one possible version of it. Alas, it appears that the future is a slow-moving red box.

The corporate operator of New Orleans public transit, Transdev, held an event with Mayor Mitch Landrieu on Monday to preview its self-driving vehicle, the EZ10 “Easy Rider” Autonomous Shuttle. The red, box-shaped EZ10, which is capable of holding 12 passengers, plodded along at roughly 8 miles per hour in front of the Morial Convention Center. Continue reading »

Feb 022017
 

The double-blue line represents the repaving planned for St. Charles Avenue between Louisiana Avenue and Calliope through the remainder of 2017. Repaving is planned above Louisiana Avenue in 2018. (via roadwork.nola.gov)

The section of St. Charles Avenue from the Garden District to the overpass is scheduled for a repaving project that will last until spring of 2018, and New Orleans officials are still working to determine the best configuration of the traffic lanes after the resurfacing is complete. Continue reading »

Jan 232017
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Last week, I chronicled the exploits of New Orleans’ newest weapon against the scourge of speeding – roving speed camera vehicles. You’ll recall that one of these vehicles was caught doing something rather naughty; namely, it was seen parked across the sidewalk on Lakeshore Drive.

I fully expected that the city would do what it normally does when it gets caught with its pants down: either ignore the incident entirely or (alternatively) issue a statement expressing regret and vowing corrective action to ensure that it wouldn’t happen again.

Instead, the city chose Option “C.” It dug in its heels and defended the indefensible. Continue reading »

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Jan 192017
 
A rider checks out a bicycle from a station in an image from a promotional video produced by Social Bicycles (via YouTube)

A rider checks out a bicycle from a station in an image from a promotional video produced by Social Bicycles (via YouTube)

In an effort to combine the convenience of public transit with the benefits of cycling, New Orleans is preparing to deploy a fleet of 700 publicly shared “social bicycles” for hire around this city this year, officials are busy telling neighborhood groups. Continue reading »

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Dec 212016
 
Motorists pass through the Jefferson Avenue intersection on Freret Street, which reopened on Friday after being closed four months. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Motorists pass through the Jefferson Avenue intersection on Freret Street, which reopened on Friday after being closed four months. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The busy Freret Street intersection with Jefferson Avenue has reopened to traffic as construction continues on the major underground drainage canal, officials said. Continue reading »

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Dec 152016
 

A member of the 610 Stompers leads a cheer as the Krewe of Hermes rolls past Napoleon Avenue construction fences in 2016. All construction on Napoleon will be complete for 2017, the U.S. Army Corps says. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Napoleon Avenue parade-goers can get their “Neutral Ground Side” T-shirts out of the mothballs for Mardi Gras 2017, because the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has announced that all construction on the avenue will be complete before the first parades roll in 2017. Continue reading »

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Nov 142016
 
The first phase of lane closures on Soutjh Broad Street is expected to detour traffic around the Gravier Street intersection until Tuesday, Nov. 15. (map via City of New Orleans)

The first phase of lane closures on Soutjh Broad Street is expected to detour traffic around the Gravier Street intersection until Tuesday, Nov. 15. (map via City of New Orleans)

The Broad Street route between Uptown and Mid-City will be affected for the next month by a series of lane closures in three phases as part of an ongoing Gravier Street reconstruction project, New Orleans city officials announced. Continue reading »

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Nov 012016
 
RTA manager Justin Augustine (from left), transit advocate Pamela Legge, and RIDE New Orleans executive director Alex Posorske speak Tuesday night at Tulane Hillel as part of a panel discussion on public transit. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

RTA manager Justin Augustine (from left), transit advocate Pamela Legge, and RIDE New Orleans executive director Alex Posorske speak Tuesday night at Tulane Hillel as part of a panel discussion on public transit. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

As the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority looks for ways to grow public transportation in the city, officials are considering new options such as a partnership with Uber to reach transit lines or a new fare system based on riders’ incomes. Continue reading »

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Oct 242016
 

Upcoming road closures on Sophie Wright Place and Camp Street. (map by Uptown Messenger via Google)

Upcoming road closures on Sophie Wright Place and Camp Street. (map by Uptown Messenger via Google)

A section of Sophie Wright Place will be closed for a new water line and a nearby stretch of Camp Street will have a lane closed nearby for water-line repairs this week, according to the Sewerage & Water Board of New Orleans. Continue reading »

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Oct 242016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Mayor Landrieu’s 2017 budget has been released, and true to form, Landrieu proposes to nickel and dime the citizens of New Orleans for scraps of revenue. In order to generate an additional $5 million, Landrieu plans to double the number of red light and speed cameras, adding a whopping 56 cameras around the city. Continue reading »

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Oct 172016
 
Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Street renovations certainly are continuing apace along Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard, a.k.a. “OCH.” The pavement has been stripped of asphalt and the newer, wider neutral ground is almost completed. Mayor Landrieu and other city leaders are already patting themselves on the back.

The only problem? Oretha Castle Haley was fine the way it was, unlike other infrastructure in the city. Most other streets remain smoldering dumpster fires. 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 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 »

 Comments Off on Owen Courreges: Sinkholes in New Orleans are more than just another bad joke