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May 022017
 

Some pro-monument supporters stand alongside counter protesters after NOPD cleared the neutral ground around Jefferson Davis (Claire Byun/cbyun@nolamessenger.com).

By Claire Byun
cbyun@nolamessenger.com

Mid City’s Jefferson Davis Monument was the epicenter of protests and counter protests Monday evening, leading police to barricade the neutral ground around the statue.

A small group of monument supporters clashed with hundreds of counter protestors Monday evening for more than an hour. The pro-monument group – who have camped out at the statue since Friday – mostly stood up against the statue of the first and only Confederate president while counter protestors stared, screamed, and sang. During the tense standoff, police created a pathway for Confederate supporters through the crowd. The small pro-monument group was shepherded away in a pick-up truck. Continue reading »

Apr 302017
 

Pro-monument protestors can be seen in front of the Jefferson Davis monument across from The Holy Ground bar.

By Claire Byun
cbyun@nolamessenger.com

A popular Mid-City Bar is at the center of controversy after pro-monument protestors say they were refused service by bar staff. The bar’s staff, however, said they haven’t refused anyone, but have been barraged with negative reviews by those supporting the Confederate flag.

The Holy Ground, a popular local bar on the corner of Canal Street and South Jefferson Davis Parkway, has received poor online reviews from pro-monument protestors camping out at the Jefferson Davis Monument, staff say. Those protestors say the bar has refused them service and “trash talks” them while “liquoring up the enemy.” Continue reading »

Apr 302017
 

Via Entergy.

About 400 Mid-City residents are still without power Sunday afternoon after heavy thunderstorms rolled through the area.

About 1,800 people along North Claiborne from Canal Street to City Park Avenue were without power for a few hours, according to Entergy maps. About 400 are without power now in the Fairgrounds neighborhood near the Racetrack. Continue reading »

Apr 272017
 

City Park’s new South Course features several lagoons and historic oak trees that once lined the former City Park golf courses destroyed by Katrina (Claire Byun).

By Claire Byun
cbyun@nolamessenger.com

City Park has been running at a budget surplus for several months, but most of the excess stems from a state-mandated order against pay raises for the park’s staff.

Operating results for March exceeded the park’s budget by a little over $100,000. Revenues slightly exceeded what the park had planned, but the kicker comes from a major dip in expenses. Most of that stems from the park’s inability to give staff a yearly merit pay raise, which was mandated by the state legislature last year.

“There was money budgeted for a merit pay increase, if we were permitted to do so,” said City Park CEO Bob Becker. “And we were not permitted by the state.” Continue reading »

Apr 262017
 

The required bicycle equipment ordinance would add a flashing or steady red light mounted on the rear to the already-required rear red reflector. (Flickr/Britt Reints).

By Claire Byun
cbyun@nolamessenger.com

Citywide bicycle operation and equipment requirements underwent a little shakeup last week, and the changes are meant to make the roads safer for everyone.

The New Orleans City Council unanimously passed amendments to meant to improve bicycle safety at their latest meeting. The bike amendments were part of the council’s consent agenda and faced no opposition from the public at the meeting.

City Councilmember Jared Brossett introduced amendments to current ordinances regarding bicycle safety, operation and equipment requirements. Brossett brought those amendments to the council’s Jan. 12 meeting but they were pushed to the council’s latest meeting.

Brossett added the ordinances to the Transportation and Airport committee’s docket a few months ago, and that committee recommended approval of all the amendments. Brossett serves as chair of that committee. Continue reading »

Apr 242017
 

A member of the Monumental Task Committee places candles and flowers along the Jefferson Davis Monument late Sunday night.

By Claire Byun
cbyun@nolamessenger.com

The Jefferson Davis Monument is still standing Monday morning after a group of pro-monument protestors stood guard over the night.

More than 50 people gathered in front of the Confederate president’s memorial Sunday night after rumors that Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s administration would begin taking down four monuments early Monday morning. The candlelight vigil was organized by the Monumental Task Committee (MTC), a pro-monuments group which previously filed a lawsuit aimed at preventing the Jefferson Davis statue—among others—from destruction. Continue reading »

Apr 202017
 

A rendering of the former Times Picayune Annex warehouse project (Albert Architecture via NORF).

By Claire Byun
cbyun@nolamessenger.com

A mostly-blighted property off the Lafitte Greenway is undergoing major development this year thanks to a warehouse restoration project.

The New Orleans Redevelopment Fund (NORF) officially broke ground on restoring the former Times Picayune Annex warehouse on 2720 St. Louis St Wednesday. The $4 million project will restore the warehouse to a mix of offices, retail and possibly eateries fronting the Greenway with a hopeful completion date of early 2018. Continue reading »

Apr 182017
 

Developers are hoping to build an affordable senior housing complex at 1950 St. Bernard Ave.

By Claire Byun
cbyun@nolamessenger.com

A new overlay district proposal increases building height along the St. Bernard Avenue corridor to four stories, and developers are hoping to use that new district for an affordable senior housing complex.

The proposal – which City Planning staff have molded for a month – must first be approved by the City Council before any construction can start.

The City Planning Commission approved a modified request from Liberty Bank and Trust Company establish the St. Bernard Overlay District, which increases allotted building height to four stories or 55 feet. Continue reading »

Apr 172017
 

Plans for the new Columbia Parc Elementary school in the St. Bernard Neighborhood (via Waggonner & Ball Architects).

By Claire Byun
cbyun@nolamessenger.com

A planned St. Bernard neighborhood school gained city approval last week, effectively closing the “cradle to college” education loop in the Columbia Parc development.

The New Orleans City Planning Commissions approved an institutional master plan for Columbia Parc Elementary last week, part of the larger Columbia Parc development on the former St. Bernard housing project land. Columbia Parc includes 685 apartments and townhomes available to all income-levels, including a senior living facility and a nationally-recognized early learning facility called Educare. Continue reading »