Happy New Year


Fireworks over Bayou St. John ring in 2014.


photos above by Charlie London.

Mayor Landrieu offers New Year’s greetings
and highlights a successful 2013

Improvements to the city’s infrastructure kicked off 2013 with the unveiling of more than $300 million in improvements at the Louis Armstrong International Airport and the opening of the $45 million Loyola Avenue street car line. The projects were another example of building back better than before by leveraging federal, state and local partnerships.    


Construction begins on restoration of historic Circle Food Store

City breaks ground on new NOFD Engine 31 Alba Road Fire Station in Venetian Isles

City begins demolition on former Rosenwald Center in the B.W. Cooper neighborhood


Delivering on his commitment to build a full service hospital in New Orleans East, Mayor Landrieu announced the start of construction on an 80 bed acute care hospital at the site of the former Methodist Hospital.  The $130 million project, which is expected to open in spring of 2014, will restore full-service healthcare to residents in New Orleans East.

New Orleans shined brightly on the world stage as the city hosted Super Bowl XLVII in the middle of the 2013 Carnival Season. The weeklong celebration wrapped an unprecedented run of major events hosted in the city and showed the world that New Orleans is back and better than ever before. With an estimated $480 million economic impact, Super Bowl XLVII was a major success for the city’s local economy, but it also left a lasting legacy in our city’s neighborhoods with the Super Saturday of Service. More than 800 volunteers turned out to improve five NORDC playgrounds including, Lyons Center, Pontchartrain Park, Harrell Stadium, Hunter’s Field and Kingswood Playspot. The project totaled $5 million in improvements, including bench building, tree planting, landscaping and painting.  



Video: NOLA FOR LIFE Midnight Basketball Season 3 Kick-Off

City breaks ground on Juvenile Justice Center


The City broke ground on a series of major projects in the historic Lower Ninth Ward, including the new $19 million Andrew P. Sanchez Community Center and Pool and the $4.1 million NOFD Engine 22 and 39 Fire Station which are both located at the intersection of North Claiborne Avenue and Caffin Street. Both of these new buildings will be symbols of this community’s rebirth following the devastation left by Hurricane Katrina. Construction also began on $44.9 million in neighborhood street repairs in the Lower Ninth Ward as part of the FEMA funded Recovery Roads Program.  

As part of a continuing effort to improve customer service at City Hall, the City launched the One Stop Shop for permitting. Through the One Stop Shop, information on all permits, licenses, and City Planning Commission actions is now available at one single place. This streamlined the customer service experience and is cutting permit processing times in half.

The City awarded 100 new Certificates of Public Necessity and Convenience (CPNC) to taxicab drivers and companies to give drivers who have not previously held CPNCs a chance to get one. This has created income opportunities for taxicab drivers to become small business entrepreneurs.


Building on recent improvements to the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, Mayor Landrieu announced plans to build a brand new state-of-the-art airport terminal on the north side of current airport property. Creating a new, modern airport is integral to the city’s success as a world-class travel destination and hub for commerce. Construction is expected to start in 2014.


Video: GE Capital Technology Center opens in Central Business District

Video: New Orleans welcomes NCAA Final Four

Video: City reopens newly renovated Treme Center

City breaks ground on Stallings St. Claude Center and Pool

Kicking off a string of exciting economic development announcements throughout the city, Walmart broke ground on a new store at the former Lakeland Medical Center site at the Southwest corner of I-10 and Bullard Avenue. Once completed, the new store will provide jobs and access to fresh food to the New Orleans East community. The state-of-the-art store is expected to open in mid-2014.
Over 250 volunteers participated in the first NOLA FOR LIFE Day in 2013 at McDonogh Playground in Algiers. With support from City departments and over 50 local organizations, we built benches, cut overgrown lots, painted trash cans, planted trees and much more. 


Representing some of the best that our city, state and country have to offer, the New Orleans Police Department Recruit Class #169 started training at the NOPD Training Academy. Class #169 was the second recruit class hired since Superintendent Serpas was appointed by Mayor Landrieu that had to meet higher standards to be accepted as NOPD recruits. Forty percent of Class #169 has a military background, and seventy percent has a degree, including 17 Bachelor’s degrees, 3 associate degrees and one master’s degree.


MAG Unit Investigation leads to most sweeping street gang indictment in New Orleans history

Video: Harrell Stadium gets Super Bowl XLVII turf

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes begins filming in New Orleans

NOLA Pay It Forward Fund activated for victims of Oklahoma Tornado


Construction began on the ReFresh Project on Broad Street, a 60,000 square-foot development that will include a new Whole Foods Market, Liberty’s Kitchen full-service café and commercial kitchen, and the Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine at Tulane University. With help from the City’s Fresh Food Retailer Initiative, the project will serve an anchor for economic development in the Broad Street commercial corridor and deliver much needed, high quality fresh foods and groceries to underserved communities in the area.



The City kicked off the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission’s 2013 summer programming season by reopening the Lyons Center in the East Riverside neighborhood. Shuttered since Hurricane Katrina, the Lyons Center underwent a $4.9 million renovation that included a new gym floor, new wood stage and theater equipment and repaired bleacher seating. The state-of-the-art facility is another example of a successful public-private partnership as Chevron provided $115,000 donation for a new dance studio and $100,000 donation for a new computer lab in the center. The NFL Foundation donated $25,000 toward the computer lab as well.


Multi-Agency Gang Unit Investigation nets sweeping indictment of twenty defendants

City breaks ground on new Joseph M. Bartholomew, Sr. Golf Course Club House

City celebrates completion of New Orleans East streetscape project


Sending a strong signal that the City is serious about equity and shared prosperity, Mayor Landrieu joined City Council members and business leaders to sign into law an ordinance that significantly reformed the City’s disadvantaged business enterprise (DBE) program to improve fairness and consistency and strengthen compliance with City’s overall 35% DBE participation goal for public contracts. The reforms strengthen program reporting and compliance requirements, streamline various processes and create penalties for non-compliance. The improvements greatly enhance the City’s ability to hold contractors accountable for meeting the overall 35% DBE participation goal for public contracts, as established by an ordinance passed in 2010. 

Serving as a mix of public safety and public art, the City unveiled the installation of Evacuspots in partnership with Evacuteer.org and the Arts Council of New Orleans. The new 14-foot stainless steel sculptures clearly identify City-Assisted Evacuation pick-up points where citizens without their own transportation would report to in the event the City calls for a mandatory evacuation. The iconic artwork was installed at 17 neighborhood pick-up points across the city as part of the City-Assisted Evacuation plan.



Mayor Landrieu joined Stirling Properties to celebrate the grand opening of Mid-City Market, located at North Carrollton Avenue and Bienville Street. The 108,763 square-foot shopping center, anchored by a 54,390 square-foot Winn-Dixie, represents one the of the most significant retail developments in New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina. Mid-City Market is a result of over $40 million in private investment. The shopping center created over 500 new jobs in the area. 


Chief Tim McConnell named 11th Superintendent of New Orleans Fire Department

Over 270 volunteers participated in fourth NOLA FOR LIFE Day in the Gert Town neighborhood

106-year-old Cita Hubbell Library reopened after $1.3 million renovation

In an effort to educate the community on Mayor Landrieu’s NOLA FOR LIFE strategy and show how the City is collectively providing support to young boys and men in New Orleans, the City introduced NOLA FOR LIFE programming on New Orleans Access Television (NOA-TV), Cox Channel 99. The NOLA FOR LIFE channel provides in-depth information about the strategy and highlights the incredible work already in progress throughout our city. The City hopes that seeing and hearing the stories of our community will encourage everyone to get involved in reducing the city’s murder rate. Content also airs on the current government and education channels 6 and 8. 



Kicking off the 2014 budgeting for outcomes process, Mayor Landrieu held a community meeting in each council district to hear directly from residents about their budget priorities. Hundreds of residents attended the meeting which aim to produce a more citizen-driven budget and to ensure improved government performance and accountability. A national best practice, the Budgeting for Outcomes system encourages city agencies to invest public resources based on the end result the City wants to achieve.



The retail boom continued as Costco opened its first Louisiana warehouse at North Carrollton Avenue and Palmetto Street. The new store created 200 new jobs with 65% of them employing New Orleans residents. The global retailer is expected to generate a $21 million direct fiscal impact to the City over a 10-year period. Walmart also 
broke ground on a new store where the Gentilly Woods Shopping Mall stood vacant and blighted since Hurricane Katrina. The new store at 4301 Chef Menteur Highway will create an estimated 300 jobs and bring access to fresh food and low-priced shopping to the Gentilly community.


City, partner agencies house 244 chronically homeless individuals

Dr. Mario Garner named CEO of New Orleans East Hospital

Construction begins on $200 million South Market District

Mayor Landrieu, City and State officials, Canal Street Development Corporation, and ACE Theatrical Group celebrated the reopening of the historic Saenger at 1111 Canal Street after a $52 million renovation. The building, shuttered since suffering significantly damaged after Hurricane Katrina, was the focus of complex redevelopment through a public-private partnership between the City of New Orleans, Canal Street Development Corporation, and ACE Theatrical Group. With the Saenger’s opening, and  the recent restorations of the Joy, Civic theaters, New Orleans stands poised to attract more residents and visitors downtown for live performances.

New Orleans received top honors at the 2013 World Travel Awards for excellence in sports tourism, beating out leading travel and sports tourism destinations such as Chicago, Las Vegas, New York City, San Francisco and Toronto. This is the first time New Orleans has received the award since its inception in 2010. The recognition comes after New Orleans hosted an unprecedented series of sporting events in 2012 and 2013, including the 78th Annual Allstate Sugar Bowl, the 2012 Allstate BCS National Football Championship, 2012 NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four, 2013 NCAA Women’s Basketball Final Four and Super Bowl XLVII, one of the most watched television events and highly rated events in sports history. Last year, New Orleans received the World Travel Market’s World Tourism Award for outstanding accomplishments in tourism industry.



More than 1,000 job seekers and dozens of employers, community partners and industry professionals from across the city participated in the first NOLA FOR LIFE Jobs & Opportunity Expo. The Expo was specifically designed to connect young New Orleanians between the ages of 16 to 30 to viable employment opportunities and essential resources within the community. The four-hour event featured on-site interviews for over 350 current job vacancies, job readiness workshops and networking with industry professionals. The Expo also offered a resource fair with connections to social services, including on-the-spot wardrobe assistance for more than 100 people.



Mayor Landrieu launches new STAT program to measure customer service at City Hall

City reaches agreement on two sanitation contracts

Over 125 volunteers participated in the fifth NOLA FOR LIFE Day at St. Roch Park. Volunteers canvassed the surrounding area and installed energy efficient light bulbs, installed smoke detectors, painted trash cans, benches and light poles, picked up litter, planted and distributed trees to neighbors, cleaned catch basins, installed bike racks and installed three basketball goals. 
Mayor Landrieu announced the launch of CustomerServiceSTAT to review keyperformance results related to customer service. Monthly CustomerServiceSTAT meetings will focus on citywide topics that are frequent sources of City interactions with the public, with an initial emphasis on NOLA311 calls, permitting and licensing, and land use. At each CustomerServiceSTAT meeting, City leaders and managers will review and assess progress achieved, overall trend data, and the likelihood of meeting performance targets. For programs at risk of not meeting targets, leaders and managers identify prospects and tactics for performance improvement, and make adjustments to operational plans as needed.



The New Orleans City Council unanimously approved the passage of the City’s 2014 Capital and General Fund budgets, totaling $247 million and $504 million respectively. The 2014 budget will pay for five recruit classes to put 150 new police officers on the streets. The capital budget funds 100 new police cars on top of the 100 cars funded in 2013. NOPD, NOFD and EMS all received increases over their 2013 budgets. The budget also prioritized NORDC again, adding nearly another $1 million on top of their 2013 budget. To combat blight, more funds were allocated for new inspectors and title research staff to help speed up the blight eradication process.



City breaks ground on new NORDC headquarters

NOLA Pay it Forward fund activated for victims of typhoon

LCMC signs non-binding letter of intent for operation of New Orleans East Hospital

23 members of Recruit Class #169 graduated from the New Orleans Police Department’s Training Academy.  Class #169 is the second recruit class that had to meet the higher standards of having at least 60 hours of college credits, or the equivalent of two years of full service in the military.

Mayor Mitch Landrieu announced that the City of New Orleans’ $52.3 million “soft second” mortgage homebuyer assistance initiative’s Direct Homebuyer Assistance Program has now issued 500 commitments totaling over $27 million. In total, 437 home purchases by first time homebuyers have been completed through the program. 



The New Orleans City Civil Service Commission approved a new policy that will “ban the box” that requires applicants to disclose prior convictions on initial job forms, and will establish new guidelines for screening candidates before a final hiring decision is made. Proposed by the Landrieu Administration, the new policy is designed to remove obstacles that might prevent qualified ex-offenders from attaining or retaining quality jobs.



Mayor Landrieu announces comprehensive workforce reentry initiative

City reopens Wisner Playground following park improvements

The Rockefeller Foundation announced New Orleans has been selected to join the 100 Resilient Cities Network. New Orleans was one of nearly 400 cities across six continents to apply. As part of the 100 Resilient Cities Network, the City of New Orleans will receive support to hire a Chief Resilience Officer, create a resilience strategy, and receive access to tools, technical support, and resources for implementing a comprehensive resilience plan.

Reducing the number of murders on the streets of our city is Mayor Landrieu’s top priority, and we are making progress. The statistics show that the number of murders in New Orleans is the lowest in over 30 years. But more work needs to be done. That’s why every day we are working hard to implement NOLA FOR LIFE, our comprehensive murder reductio