Aug 242011

Signs read "Welcome" in Chinese and Spanish at the new Westbank campus of the International School of Louisiana. (Robert Morris,

Seeking to shed its image as a boutique language school and become a driving force in New Orleans education reform, the board of the International School of Louisiana voted unanimously Wednesday to apply to take over one of the city’s most troubled schools next fall.

“It’s a challenge that I think it’s time we step up to,” said ISL board president Andrew Yon.

The ISL board met Wednesday night for the first time in its new campus in Algiers, which had its first day of school on Monday. The board has long seen the Westbank expansion as only a first step, however, to a more ambitious goal of educating a broad swath of the city’s children in a network of high-performing schools. Continue reading »

Aug 242011

Jean-Paul Villere

“Let’s go arrest some poor people.”  That was the comment a friend made the other night while we were walking down Freret.  We noticed a rather nice bicycle not so chained up and wondered if this might be one of NOPD’s ‘bait bikes.’  When he said it, he used a funny, rural voice, and I laughed.  But it isn’t funny.  Stolen bikes suck.  People who steal them suck.  I was laughing at the notion that one might actually be arrested by an officer while genuinely trying to provide for one’s self or one’s family.  A little like Jean Valjean but a lot less harsh and lot less French.  So far in the bike bait round up – or at least what NOPD has infomed us of – career criminals have been apprehended.  Those with 5 priors here, 2 there.  It’s a little alarming and a lot interesting.  Supposedly but consistently these bikes are used in other, different crimes. Continue reading »

Aug 242011

The governing board of the International School of Louisiana will meet tonight at the new Westbank campus, which officially opened last week.

The board will meet at 6 p.m. at the Holy Name of Mary site, 502 Olivier Street, to continue discussion of its expansion plans for the coming year and its own committee structure, according to the agenda.

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Aug 232011

Thaddeus Braud

Investigators have identified a suspect in last week’s home-invasion robbery attempt on Magazine Street, and are seeking the public’s help in locating him, police said Tuesday.

Thaddeus “Fuggie” Braud, 40, is wanted on a charge of aggravated burglary, said Lt. Mike Montalbano, interim commander of the NOPD Second District. Braud is known to frequent not only Laurence Square park, but also areas of Magazine and Valence and Lyons and Annunciation, Montalbano said. Continue reading »

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Aug 232011

Whole Foods, the Monkey Hill property and the Poydras Home addition.

After hearing from a procession of worried neighbors, the City Planning Commission voted to reject all but the least controversial of Whole Foods’ requested operational changes, possibly reducing months of efforts by the Magazine Street grocery into an extra hour of business on Sunday and the ability to put plants in front of the store.

A major addition to the nearby Poydras Home retirement community was approved in accordance with the architects’ and neighbors wishes, but a decision was deferred on the expansion of the Monkey Hill bar into Johnny V’s restaurant amid concerns about parking and the nature of the expansion itself. Continue reading »

Aug 232011

A good, strong logo doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time to develop; it’s a process and here at Creative Zumo, we work closely with our clients to make sure the final logo conveys the right tone and message. We present several initial design directions. One or two of these get refined based on client feedback. Once we have a winner (our client is happy), we apply color. When a color palette is selected and finalized, we then design the rest of the identity package: business cards, letterhead, envelopes, labels and so on. The logo is the starting point that shows the world who you (and your business) are.

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Aug 222011

A rendering of the additions to Poydras Home. The new building, new driveway and additional parking are at the right, near Jefferson Avenue. (courtesy Mathes Brierre Architects)

In a surprising move near a busy commercial corridor, city planning staffers are suggesting that a three-story addition to the Poydras Home retirement community be accompanied by fewer off-street parking spaces than the project originally envisioned, in an apparent effort to maximize the site’s green space. Continue reading »

Aug 222011

Residents of City Council District A — which runs covers most of the Carrollton, University and Audubon neighborhoods from Jefferson Avenue to the Jefferson Parish line in Uptown New Orleans, plus much of Mid-City and Lakeview — are invited to a town hall meeting Wednesday to discuss priorities for next year’s city budget with Mayor Mitch Landrieu and City Councilwoman Susan Guidry.

Department heads and deputy mayors will also be present. A “resource center” with one-on-one conversation will begin at 5:30 p.m., and the community meeting will begin at 6 p.m. at Lakeview Christian Center, 5885 Fleur de Lis Drive.

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Aug 222011

Whole Foods, the Monkey Hill property and Poydras Home are all headed to City Planning Commission this week.

Three projects planned near Magazine Street’s upper end — the Poydras Home expansion, the Whole Foods operations changes, and the creation of a new restaurant next to Monkey Hill bar — will be heard by the City Planning Commission on Tuesday, according to the meeting’s agenda. Continue reading »

Aug 222011

Owen Courrèges

If there’s a government agency that I have a love/hate relationship with, it’s the New Orleans Historic District Landmarks Commission (HDLC). I love preserving Victorian architecture in New Orleans; I hate the stubborn, counterproductive attitude of the HDLC. Continue reading »