Jul 082015
 
Entergy trucks blocking the street on June 2, aka, life in New Orleans. (photo by S.L. Alexander)

Entergy trucks blocking the street on June 2, aka, life in New Orleans. (photo by S.L. Alexander)

S. L. Alexander (via courtroomcarnival.com)

S. L. Alexander (via courtroomcarnival.com)

By S.L. Alexander

As we begin to age in place, we Baby Boomers are being bombarded with suggestions in support of our insistence that 60 will just be the new 40: structured exercise (walk 10,000 steps a day!), careful diet (eat a lot of blueberries!), and mental gymnastics (do crossword puzzles in ink, even the one in the Sunday New York Times!).

But those of us of any age who are lucky enough to live in New Orleans as the tenth anniversary of August 29, 2005 (which I call “the late unpleasantness”) slinks our way, don’t need to wear our Fitbits 24/7. Just dealing with the confluence of various deadlines for spending government money, an estimated 71 billion federal bucks to rebuild the most devastated city since Sodom and/or Gomorrah — which certain folk have compared us to, actually — has forced us to strengthen ourselves in at least 10 ways as we fight a uniquely local condition: New Orleans Infrastructure Fatigue. Continue reading »

Jun 292015
 

(map via Entergy New Orleans)

(map via Entergy New Orleans)

The bike path along the Mississippi River will be closed starting today (Monday, June 29) for the month of July as well as parts of August and September as Entergy begins preparing for its project to upgrade transmission lines through Uptown New Orleans, the utility announced. Continue reading »

Jun 262015
 
Conceptual designs for the Napoleon Avenue after construction is finished. (image by U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

Conceptual designs for the Napoleon Avenue after construction is finished. (image by U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

When construction is finished on the major section of Napoleon Avenue from South Claiborne to near St. Charles Avenue — expected by the end of the year — the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers plans to build a walking path down the center of the neutral ground similar to that in Broadmoor, but to narrow the neutral ground by nine feet to make room for new bike lanes in the street in each direction. Continue reading »

Jun 232015
 
Construction netting surrounds the exposed drainage canal revealed under the Coliseum Square sidewalks in mid-May. (image via WWL-TV)

Construction netting surrounds the exposed drainage canal revealed under the Coliseum Square sidewalks in mid-May. (image via WWL-TV)

The project to improve the sidewalks around Coliseum Square and the International School of Louisiana — halted by the unexpected discovery of 1880s-era drainage canals underneath them — will now fall under a federally-mandated review by the state office of historic preservation, officials confirmed. Continue reading »

Jun 202015
 

(map via City of New Orleans)

(map via City of New Orleans)

A portion of Drexel Drive will temporarily close this week to allow the construction of a new pedestrian bridge serving Xavier University students, followed by the temporary closure of Washington Avenue next week, the city of New Orleans announced. Continue reading »

Jun 102015
 
A crack is visible in a foundation that attorney Michael Whitaker says is only 9 years old in the 2500 block of Napoleon Avenue. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

A crack is visible in a foundation that attorney Michael Whitaker says is only 9 years old in the 2500 block of Napoleon Avenue. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Attorney Michael Whitaker (left) listens as the Rev. Tom Watson describes damage to Watson Memorial Teaching Ministries on Napoleon Avenue during a news conference Wednesday morning. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Attorney Michael Whitaker (left) listens as the Rev. Tom Watson describes damage to Watson Memorial Teaching Ministries on Napoleon Avenue during a news conference Wednesday morning. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

A total of 74 plaintiffs have now joined the lawsuit alleging that their homes have been damaged by construction of new drainage canals under major thoroughfares through Uptown New Orleans, but their attorney says the costs of repairing these houses is already built into the project and won’t increase the costs for the Sewerage & Water Board. Continue reading »

Jun 092015
 

LaToya Cantrell

LaToya Cantrell

City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell has assembled a full lineup of representatives from the governmental agencies responsible for the many ongoing public works projects around Uptown New Orleans — drainage canals, road repaving, electrical upgrades and others — for a town hall meeting that begins at 6 p.m. today (Tuesday, June 9). Continue reading »

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Jun 032015
 
A map of the Ninemile-Napoleon transmission upgrade project path. (courtesy of Entergy)

A map of the Ninemile-Napoleon transmission upgrade project path. (courtesy of Entergy)

Acknowledging the unpredictable maze of utility work and road closures that Uptown New Orleans has become, Entergy officials say their major upcoming project to replace transmission lines along Leake Avenue, Magazine and Annunciation streets will only require the streets to be shut down for hours at a time — not the days, weeks or months associated with other projects — and power is not expected to be shut off to any individual homes. Continue reading »

May 262015
 
The section in yellow is scheduled to be complete by the end of the year. (map via U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

The section in yellow is scheduled to be complete by the end of the year. (map via U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

Contractors with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are scheduled to finish the first major leg of the massive ongoing series Uptown drainage projects — the section of Napoleon Avenue between South Claiborne and Carondelet — by the end of the year, officials said, providing some measure of relief and hope to drivers weary of years of avoiding so many major thoroughfares. Continue reading »

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May 182015
 
Passengers transfer from a shuttle bus on Melpomene Avenue to a streetcar on St. Charles Avenue during road construction in 2010. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Sabree Hill)

Passengers transfer from a shuttle bus on Melpomene Avenue to a streetcar on St. Charles Avenue during road construction in 2010. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Sabree Hill)

Streetcar service through the Uptown area will be interrupted in three phases over the summer in order to accommodate the SELA drainage project, RTA officials told Carrollton residents on Monday night. Continue reading »

May 182015
 

Owen Courreges

In the film Cool Hand Luke, a prison guard slaps the protagonist, played by Paul Neuman, into solitary.

“Sorry, Luke,” the guard explains. “I’m just doing my job. You gotta appreciate that.”

Luke responds laconically: “Nah – calling it your job don’t make it right, Boss.”

The phrase “just doing my job” has always been used to cover a multitude of sins. Indeed, when a man feebly attempts justify anything with those words, it’s almost dead-certain that he’s covering up for his own peccadilloes.

New Orleans, sadly, is full of these types. Continue reading »

May 182015
 

LaToya Cantrell

LaToya Cantrell

Susan Guidry

Susan Guidry

The two City Council members representing Uptown New Orleans — Susan Guidry in District A, and LaToya Cantrell in District B — will each meet with residents this week alongside representatives of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and other agencies as major road and drainage construction projects continue around the area. Continue reading »

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