City Council postpones controversial demolition request on General Pershing

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820 General Pershing Street, photographed in December 2012. ( file photo)

820 General Pershing Street, photographed in December 2012. ( file photo)

A request to tear down a vacant, century-old house just off Magazine Street on General Pershing that drew outcry from neighbors was postponed Thursday for at least a week by the New Orleans City Council.

The request by Triton Holdings to demolish 820 General Pershing for a “private garden” for the owner who lives in Metairie drew skepticism from the Neighborhood Conservation District Committee in June. Preservationists said the home can be renovated, and neighbors said they have offered to buy it to do so since the owner’s last demolition request in 2012.

The NCDC rejected the request by a 5-2 vote, and the owner’s appeal of that decision appeared on the City Council agenda Thursday morning, but was postponed until Aug. 21. The Council deadline to make a decision is Sept. 8, which means the request could be postponed yet again until the Council’s Sept. 4 meeting.

7 thoughts on “City Council postpones controversial demolition request on General Pershing

  1. Can someone explain what the objection to a private garden would be? Why, as the other poster seems to suggest, would such a proposal arouse suspicion of fraud?

  2. One reason that many object to demolishing a 19th century residential structure, is the person who wants a “private garden” first asked for a parking lot to go with the commercial property they purchased on magazine street. Allowing the demolition is allowing a de facto zoning change. Additionally, the person lives in Metairie and many doubt that they would spend much time looking after and enjoying their “garden”.

  3. A person living in Metarie, wants to put a private garden on prime uptown real estate! That doesn’t raise a flag to you? That garden would not last 1 year when they would turn it into a parking lot that grow bigger each month until it consumed the entire space, whereby making the owners adjacent property that much more valuable.

  4. Thanks for the responses! Just for the record, I wasn’t trying to defend any position or any person. It’s just that I’m new here in Uptown and trying to get a sense of the lay of the land, so to speak.

    If you could help me out a little bit more – how could there be such a thing as a “de facto zoning change”? Isn’t that why we have zoning laws? Wouldn’t any attempt to change a private garden into a parking lot be actionable? Couldn’t we (the relevant governing bodies) just stop the owner’s attempt to make such a change?

    • Any vacant piece of land adjacent to or abutting a commercial property can become an accessory parking lot with no zoning change. Hence de facto zoning change. And zoning in NOLA is a joke anyway. Heavily developer controlled. Welcome to Louisiana. Besides, no one should be able to demolish a salvageable historic home for a garden. Get your garden in Metairie!

  5. There is considerable skepticism about this plan for a so-called “garden”. The owner stated at a public meeting that if his request for the “garden” was denied he would allow the property to continue to deteriorate (i.e., demolition by neglect). He wants a parking lot for the commercial property he purchased on Magazine St. (with the potential for a cut-through to Napoleon Avenue). There are already two parking lots on this block and a third would impact both property values and quality of life for the residents and neighbors.

    A few legitimate neighbors (i.e. people who actually live here) support his plan to tear down the house but all of the residents on the block in question are strongly against it to the point that they offered to purchase the property and put it back into residential use (which was refused).

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