As I wrestled over what I might pen this week I read over the transcript from yesterday’s CPC meeting regarding the rezoning request of 4877 Laurel so that it might become realized as a coffeehouse. And when I read the ridiculous decision crafted by the commission, my inner green apron got ruffled. That the CPC voted against a rezoning by 6 to 1 and with very little if any support from attendees on the matter, frankly baffles me. But then we are talking about a government entity in the City of New Orleans; maybe I shouldn’t be surprised? Le sigh.
“We are represented by a Republican and a Democrat, and both of them need a call this week about this vote,” said MSNBC host and Tulane professor Melissa Harris-Perry.
A technicality in the city zoning code became a stumbling block for a coffee shop proposed for the former Laurel Street firehouse next to Wisner Park on Tuesday, but planning commissioners said they were opposing the project reluctantly as they passed the issue to the City Council for a final decision.
The city’s only indie, black-owned bookstore, Community Book Center is turning the big 3-0.
Over the last three decades, the operation that Vera Warren-Williams launched in her parents’ Lower Ninth Ward home has blossomed into a black literary hub hosting publishing world heavyweights such as Alice Walker, Octavia Butler, Dr. John Henrik Clark and Nikki Giovanni while serving as a home base to local authors like Dr. Gwendolyn Midlo Hall, Brenda Marie Osbey, Tom Dent as well as father-and-daughter writer pair: Kalamu ya Salaam and Kiini Salaam among others.
Early last week, long white trailers with doors dramatically labeled “Fiona” and “Cordelia” slowly rolled up Freret Street, coming to a rest near the celebrated cocktail bar Cure.
Fiona and Cordelia, as the entertainment world was just discovering, are the names of Jessica Lange’s and Sarah Paulson’s characters in the upcoming third season of the notoriously macabre FX television series American Horror Story. Once again, Hollywood had returned to Freret Street.
Second Harvest Food Bank, which helps feed a quarter of a million South Louisiana residents each year, is hosting a free screening Tuesday evening at the Prytania Theatre of “A Place at the Table,” a documentary about the struggles of Americans on food stamps. MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry, New Orleans Health Commissioner Karen DeSalvo and Troy Henry of Sterling Farms will participate in a panel discussion after the event.
This past Saturday, the new Costco Wholesale Store opened its doors in Carrollton. The membership-only bulk retailer is a plum acquisition for New Orleans, revitalizing an empty commercial lot and capturing more retail commerce within the city. It also stands as a comfortable monument to domestic consumerism, where you can buy a gallon tub of mayonnaise because, gosh darn it, we’re Americans.
Although this opening is undoubtedly a blessing, Costco has become something of a political truncheon in recent years. You see, Costco has situated itself as the poster child for high retail wages, placing other national retailers, particularly Walmart, on the defensive.
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Six years ago, Audubon Charter School launched one of the most unique and ambitious preschool programs in the city of New Orleans: it would welcome 100 3- and 4-year-old children, regardless of parents’ ability to pay and in spite of very limited state funding for them.
Now, school officials credit that program as a key element of its soaring test scores. But with the preschool running a significant deficit and no new funding for preschool in sight, school leaders are openly wondering how to continue those programs.
For their 650 other stores around the country, they mostly just opened the doors and people started shopping, the executives said.
“We’ve never been treated like this before,” Costco cofounder Jeff Brotman said. “You guys know how to throw a party.”
The state Department of Transportation and Development’s attempt to auction off the closed Jackson Avenue ferry landing for $1.65 million ended with no bidders Thursday, according to a report from Baton Rouge in The Times-Picayune. The state “will now have to consider its other options for selling the property, including bringing it back up for sale at a later date,” the article states.
Neighbors of the property had mixed feelings about its potential sale, with some suggesting that public coffers could benefit from the money, and others expressing hope that it could be included in a broader redevelopment of the riverfront, according to a report by Tania Dall and our partners at WWL-TV on Wednesday evening prior to the sale.
“We’re at the 1-yard line,” Halpern said. “We’re just one little piece apart, I think.”
HiVolt Coffee has opened its highly anticipated “third-wave” coffee shop in the Lower Garden District, a Baton Rouge food truck operator is planning to open a shop on St. Charles Avenue and NOLA Brewing has opened its taproom to the public.