Dec 312011

The camera on Henry Clay Avenue at Coliseum issued 40,000 tickets this year, and the camera on Jackson Avenue at Chestnut issued 25,000 — both overlooking 25-mph zones “where drivers tend to think the speed limit is higher — often for good reason,” reports Gordon Russell of The Times-Picayune.

Sep 062011

417 Henry Clay (photo via Preservation Resource Center)

A couple who want to demolish their historic Henry Clay Avenue home and replace it with a new house found an unsympathetic audience at City Hall on Tuesday, and their plans will now carry an unfavorable recommendation when they appear before the New Orleans City Council.

Architect Tracy Lea, who owns the house with his wife, told the Neighborhood Conservation District Committee that despite their improvements to the house over the years, its maintenance has become problematic, and that they would prefer to replace it with a house of their own design. They searched for a lot elsewhere in the city, but could not find one preferable to their current property on the edge of Audubon Park. Continue reading »

Feb 032011

The Uptowner, 438 Henry Clay Avenue (Sabree Hill,

The New Orleans City Council delivered a unanimous message Thursday to the owners of the former Gabrielle restaurant: Please reopen your restaurant, but not on Uptown’s Henry Clay Avenue.

“There are many locations that would be appropriate,” said Councilwoman Susan Guidry, after a lengthy explanation of her reasons for opposing the Sonniers’ request to convert The Uptowner banquet hall into a revival of the Gabrielle. “I do not believe this is one.” Continue reading »

Jan 202011

The Uptowner, 438 Henry Clay Avenue (Sabree Hill,

What could have been the final chapter in the years-long effort by the owners of the former Gabrielle restaurant to reopen in Uptown New Orleans was postponed Thursday amid a renewed attempt to find common ground with neighbors.

The owners of the Gabrielle, Greg and Mary Sonnier, need the city’s permission to convert the Uptowner on Henry Clay Avenue from its current status as a banquet hall into a full-time restaurant. The city’s planning commission unanimously recommended against the Gabrielle last month, leaving the full New Orleans City Council to affirm or reject that recommendation in a meeting set for Thursday morning.

The issue never came before the council Thursday, however, postponed without explanation until the council’s Feb. 3 meeting. After the meeting, Councilwoman Susan Guidry’s office explained that the delay is to allow the Sonniers another chance to reach a compromise with their surrounding neighborhoods. Continue reading »

Dec 082010

The Uptowner, 438 Henry Clay

Amid unanswered questions about the plan for the proposed Gabrielle Restaurant on Henry Clay Avenue, the Audubon-Riverside Neighborhood Association decided Tuesday evening to withhold its support as the project heads to a crucial city planning commission meeting next week.

The owner of the restaurant, Greg Sonnier, said upon hearing of the association’s decision that he has been primarily focused on preparing for the Dec. 14 hearing before the City Planning Commission, and that he had hoped to work with the neighborhood association later in the process. Continue reading »