New Orleans Riverfront Redevelopment Approved

Plans to redevelop a section of the Mississippi Riverfront in New Orleans have been approved and construction could begin by the end of 2009.

"The City Council recently approved the expenditure of $30 million in Community Development Block Grant funds for the public park, clearing the way for construction of the landmark project to begin before the end of the year."

"The first phase will transform the area between Esplanade Avenue and Mazant Street. Now a gritty industrial zone marred by burned-out cargo docks, the area is set to become verdant green space replete with bike paths, pavilions, two piers and even electricity-generating windmills. If everything goes according to plan, the park will open in 2011."

"The designs reveal transformations of several decrepit wharves that now block pedestrian access to the waterfront. The fire-ravaged Mandeville Street Wharf will be replaced by a covered pavilion that could be used for outdoor concerts or other events. A wharf at Gallier Street would be rebuilt as a pier, allowing pedestrians to walk on a deck over the river. A second pier is planned at the foot of Press Street. A pavilion planned for Piety Street will have a musical theme, with plaques embedded in the ground to give facts about famous New Orleans musicians."

"In a city that has been slow to build affordable housing and other infrastructure since the 2005 storm, some have questioned whether a riverfront promenade is a necessary endeavor. Dubbed Reinventing the Crescent, the development would have additional phases that would extend the riverfront park from the Industrial Canal to Jackson Avenue. The entire project is slated to be complete in 2018."

Full Story: Architects present concept for redeveloping New Orleans riverfront

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