Archive for Bayou St. John

AUTOMATIC RETRACTABLE SCREEN STORMWATER INLET PROTECTION DEVICES

Posted in Featured, HISTORY, Living Well, More Great Posts! with tags , , , , , , , , on April 4, 2017 by katrinafilm

Thanks to Robert Thompson for sending this in…
Article courtesy Forester Magazines
http://foresternetwork.com/erosion-control-magazine/ec-soil/ec-erosion-control/protecting-storm-drain-inlets/

Everybody loves a party, and nobody loves a good time more than New Orleans, particularly during Mardi Gras when nearly one and a half million visitors flood the city, more than tripling its usual population. But after any good time, there is a lot to clean up from the festivities, and street trash is an overwhelming burden. This year the city had help, thanks to the Wing-Gate automatic retractable screen (ARS) stormwater inlet protection devices from California-based United Storm Water Inc. and United Pumping Services.

Company stormwater sales manager Terry Flury explains how the specialized protection devices help municipalities cope with the everyday headache of trapping trash and protecting stormwater. “Although we originated in southern California, compliance with increasingly stringent policies of municipal separate stormwater sewer systems [MS4s] across the country is helping drive our popularity. Our full-capture devices are all stainless steel and have a five-millimeter perforated screen that prevents items as small as a cigarette butt from entering storm drains.

“We also have stormwater filter DrainPacs that filter out hydrocarbons, and we can customize the filter media to address whatever the customer needs. For example, if you’re concerned about heavy metals, oils, or fertilizer, the filter media could be Perlite, activated carbon, or whatever you might need to address the problem.”

And customizing the product is all in a day’s work, even when it’s a rush to meet the deadline for arguably the country’s biggest, or at least most enthusiastic, outdoor party.

“We recently did a Wing-Gate screen install on Bourbon Street in New Orleans,” explains Flury, “and we had to come up with a special design. Our standard ARS screens are configured completely different and could not accommodate the New Orleans street grate models, which are very unusual and strange looking, made around 1900, and all cast iron with multi-phased support legs.”

Flury says the city wanted something in place by Mardi Gras 2016, so the design team was challenged to come up with a new configuration.

“We did a pilot test of 30 basins and came up with a Wing-Gate design that was completely different. This went through [the city’s] approval process and we had the screens in place well before Mardi Gras.”

City officials were pleased, he says. “We’re now working on a plan to eventually do the whole city.”

The Wing-Gate devices, he explains, are automatic retractable screens that respond to the incoming water, both retaining trash and allowing water to flow. The ARS fits right into the curb openings; in dry months the screen prevents trash from entering the catch basins, and during rain events it opens after water reaches about 40% of curb height. Connector screens then act as a second line of defense for debris, protecting the outlet pipes.

Sometimes meeting client needs has to address more than making a new size or configuration. Flury describes how the bright stainless steel of the ARS was virtually a magnet for scrap collectors in some urban areas. “So for customers who need it, what we’ve done is simply finish the stainless in flat black paint with a powder coating, which replicates plastic and draws far less attention and protects their investment.”

Since the company actually comprises two entities—United Stormwater and United Pumping—Flury says they can manage not only client stormwater needs, but also hazardous waste.

“If we run into a hazardous waste issue, we can act in a remedial capacity. For example, if we run into an oil spill, oil in storm drains, our crews will come and dam up the area and either broom off or vacuum the oil. We really have the best of both worlds when it comes to managing and protecting our water.”

Bayou Cutters Sail Along the Banks of Bayou St. John

Posted in Featured, HISTORY, Living Well, More Great Posts! with tags , , , , , , on April 4, 2017 by katrinafilm

This morning, the Orleans Levee Board cut the grass on the banks of Bayou St. John.
As the photo below sent in by Tommy Lewis shows, they did a tremendous job!

Bayou cutters sailed through the grass on the banks of Bayou St. John this morning. Click on Tommy Lewis’ photo for a larger view.

***

Orleans Levee Board Continues to Impress with Work on Bayou St. John

The Orleans Levee Board takes care of the banks of Bayou St. John.
As you can see from Charlie London’s photos below of today’s work on the bayou, they continue to do high quality work for you and me.

***

Bayou St. John is the Reason for New Orleans


by Angela Carll
Times Picayune – November 15, 1985
Bayou St. John is the reason New Orleans is located where it is. The bayou provided a connection from the Mississippi River overland via an old Indian path to Lake Ponchartrain.

A number of historic landmarks still stand in this neighborhood to remind visitors of the city’s heritage.

The Old Spanish Custom House, built in 1784 at the corner of Moss Street and Grand Route Saint John, is the oldest structure in this neighborhood.
Another renowned home is the Pitot House, named for James Pitot, the second mayor of New Orleans. Built in 1799 at 1370 Moss Street, the Pitot House was later moved a short distance up the bayou to 1440 Moss in 1970.

The Tivoli amusement park once stood where the Pitot House is now. It featured a pavillion, orange trees, and dances were held there on Sundays.

Much of Bayou St. John remained swampy and unable to be developed while the city was attempting to drain the area, which was called “back of town” as early as 1835.

In 1866, the city started using the bayou as a drainage receptacle, and a community of houseboats grew up along it. In 1936, the State House of Representatives declared the bayou a non-navigable stream.

Fort St. John, where the bayou and lake meet, was originally built as a fortification by the French and later became the most prominent resort area in New Orleans during the 1930s. The Old Spanish Fort still stands on this site.

The fort is a modern-day battleground. The Orleans Levee Board has proposed replacing the Lakeshore Drive bridge that spans the bayou at its entrance to the lake with a grade-level crossing using culverts for water to flow back and forth from the lake to the bayou.

Members of the Bayou St. John Improvement Association sued the Levee Board to halt construction, arguing that wind moves water currents and that the City Park lagoons which are fed by water from the bayou will stagnate. They also contended that closing the mouth of the bayou will damage an important part of the city’s historical heritage. (The “waterfall dam” near the mouth of Bayou St. John was removed in 2013. Please visit the link for more information: http://fsjna.org/2012/08/update-on-dam-removal/)

Although the bayou today lacks even the rowing clubs, which were popular in the last century, a drive along its curving shore shows typical Louisiana country homes. It still exists to remind us of New Orleans’ earliest beginnings, and why the city was built in a place that seems most improbable to us today.

 

CLICK HERE TO VIEW A PDF OF THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE.

 

Faubourg St. John was a community ten years before the founding of New Orleans in 1718.

Click on the map of Faubourg St. John for a larger view.

For more information, please visit the ABOUT and HISTORY tabs at FSJNA dot ORG

Parkway People Perfect Parks Proudly

Posted in Featured, HISTORY, Living Well with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 3, 2017 by katrinafilm

photo and info from Robert Thompson

parks and parkways

click on the photo for a larger view

 

Whether you call it the “neutral ground” or the median strip, residents and visitors can agree Esplanade Avenue has lush greenery.

This hard working crew from Parks and Parkways keeps it that way!

Today, James and his crew were removing the oak leaf blanket which attempts to hide our roadway and choke our plantings.

These guys never seem to lack enthusiasm for the work and deserve our gratitude.  The truck in the background of the photo above is full of bags of debris they picked up today.

Please say “hello” and “thank you” on occasion, and recognize these workers and the pride they take in beautifying our public spaces.

***

New Orleans offers thousands of acres of green space for visitors and residents to enjoy, which includes parks, playgrounds, city squares, neutral grounds, and street trees. Parks and Parkways manages, maintains, develops, beautifies and preserves over 2,000 acres of New Orleans’ public green space, which includes 2 major parks, 200 smaller parks and squares, including Jackson SquareArmstrong Park/Congo Square, and Lafayette Square, New Orleans’ neutral grounds, the 18-hole Joseph M. Bartholomew Municipal Golf Course, located in Ponchartrain Park, and over 450,000 trees.

Virtually every neighborhood in New Orleans contains a park, square, or outdoor green space. These green spaces are largely regulated and maintained by two regulatory agencies, Parks and Parkways and the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission.

Three major exceptions are City Park external link, which is regulated by a unique state agency of the Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism operated by the non-profit City Park Improvement Association (CPIA), and Audubon Park external link and Woldenberg Park external link along the downtown riverfront, regulated by The Audubon Commission, which was established by State Act in 1914 to maintain and develop Audubon Park.

Click here to download a PDF of the Parks and Greenspaces by Jurisdiction Map.

For more information about Parks and Parkway and the great work they do for all of us, please visit the link below:
http://www.nola.gov/parks-and-parkways/

Are Delivery Trucks Causing Injuries at Esplanade and Mystery Streets?

Posted in CRIME, Featured, HISTORY, Living Well with tags , , , , , , , on April 1, 2017 by katrinafilm

Click on the photo for a larger view

 

Let me preface this post by saying this is NOT an April Fool’s joke.

The yellow Americans with Disabilities Act mat on the corner of Esplanade and Mystery is causing injuries.

One man tripped over the mat sticking up at Esplanade and Mystery and literally fell flat on his face which bloodied his nose and caused him to lose his glasses.   Karen at Terranova’s said an ambulance was called.

A woman wearing sandals caught her toe in the protruding mat and she bled profusely leaving blood on the corner.

Trucks delivering to Canseco’s warehouse door on Mystery Street appear to be sitting on and rolling over the ADA mat on the corner of Esplanade at Mystery Street.

Click on the photo above to get a better view of the large crack above the Americans with Disabilities Act mat at the corner of Esplanade and Mystery Streets.   The crack does not appear to be one caused by settling but by a large amount of weight pressing on the area.

Large bollards on either side of the mat could alleviate the problem of trucks rolling over and sitting on the ADA mat on the corner of Esplanade and Mystery Streets.

Please call 311 if you believe that this is a situation that should be immediately repaired.   I have called but, there is strength in numbers.   This really should be repaired right away.

EASTER EGG HUNT AT 1700 MOSS on April 2nd

Posted in CRIME, Featured, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on March 8, 2017 by katrinafilm

EASTER EGG HUNT

April 2nd at 11 a.m. at 1700 Moss
on Bayou St. John

There will be fun for all: games, crafts, and prizes, and an adult Easter Egg Hunt.

EASTER EGG HUNTHot dogs, hamburgers, and drinks (soft and otherwise) will be available.

Bring your own chairs.

Reservation is needed for adults and children
.

Contact Rose Mancini at rmancini3@cox.net or 504-251-4970 or the Haus at 504-522-8014.

RSVP by March 17

EASTER EGG HUNT

The Easter Egg Hunt is an event produced by the Deutsches Haus

The Deutsches Haus has many events and interesting things to do all year long and is an important contributor to our community.  The Deutsches Haus has partnered with the Faubourg St. John Neighborhood Association year after year to help “Feed the First” each Mardi Gras weekend.

Feed the First” provides  3  meals each day during the long Mardi Gras weekend to the N.O.P.D. officers of the 1st District.   The officers work extremely long hours during the Mardi Gras weekend and are very grateful for  the hot meals and treats that the “Feed the First” initiative provides.

***
DEUTSCHES HAUS HISTORY, PURPOSE, and MISSION

Incorporated in 1928, the Deutsches Haus was formed as a benevolent and social organization which evolved from the Deutsche Gesellschaft von New Orleans and several other Deutsche groups. The Deutsche Gesellschaft, whose origins dated back to 1848, provided support for the numerous German immigrants in the New Orleans area, providing them meals and housing, helping them find employment, and assisting them in reaching their ultimate destination in the United States and assisting in become U S Citizens.

Expanding on its foundation, the Deutsches Haus grew into an organization with a mission to celebrate and foster the rich culture, musical heritage, language and history of the German people. Our Oktoberfest and Volksfest Festivals features authentic German music, food and beverages for all to enjoy, as well as activities for the kids. These events are an opportunity for our local groups to generate revenue which is used to help sustain us throughout the year and assist in sponsoring future events celebrating our German heritage. But most importantly, these festivals introduce our German heritage to the New Orleans population. We sponsor speakers and German films about issues and events of interest to the German-American community that are free and open to the public.

Deutsches Haus established a scholarship fund, and working in conjunction with the University of New Orleans, Center Austria promotes the German language and German history for students chosen by the University to study in Germany during the summer.

Support is provided for the Deutsches Haus Damenchor and Mannerchor fostering our German musical heritage. Meeting space is provided for the International German speaking fraternity, Schlaraffia, promoting friendship, art, and humor.

We sponsor and support Benjamin Franklin High School and Jesuit High School, of New Orleans, in promoting German music and language through the free use of the Haus and grounds for fund raising activities for their exchange student programs and language programs.

In addition, we support other ethnic organizations, especially the Irish and Irish-Americans. We grant use of the Haus to the Irish to promote the Irish contribution to New Orleans. We offer the Haus for Irish dance and musical groups within the city, as well as, to traveling groups.

We are a Non-Profit Public Charity Corporation as defined in the Internal Revenue Section 501 (c) (3) with a volunteer Board of Directors and Officers.

The Deutsches Haus is proud to have one of the largest private archives of German memorabilia in the country, presently on extended loan to the Historic New Orleans Collection. (http://www.hnoc.org/)

The archives contain records from various German Consulates located in the city prior to 1870, local German newspapers and periodicals, genealogical records, sheet music and membership roles from early German singing societies and more. In keeping with this tradition as an educational organization the Haus sponsors German language classes, lectures and concerts.

The spirit of “Gemütlichkeit” pervades the Deutsches Haus year-round, but it is especially prominent in the early Autumn. Each year, thousands of people come to the Haus to enjoy the traditional German cuisine (everything from Schnitzel to Sauerkraut), dancing in the Biergarten, favorite folksongs and German beer and wine, all part of the annual Oktoberfest celebration. The Haus holds a number of other special events and festivals throughout the year, including Volkfest, Faschingfest (a Carnival celebration), and Tirolnacht, an evening for Austrian exchange students.

Everything is Coming Up Roses at Capdevielle

Posted in Featured, HISTORY with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 7, 2017 by katrinafilm


 Robert Thompson has been on a mission.   The once neglected Capdevielle Place has received much love and attention from neighbors rallied by Robert.

 Today, roses and palms became the stars of Capdevielle Place in the round centerpiece of the pocket park.   Check out the photos and a statement from Robert Thompson  below:

“Things are coming together at Capdevielle Place.  A vision from the get-go, rehabbing of the bed in Capdevielle Park, seemed like an impossible dream. After many ideas, much  sweat equity, cooperation from a committed Parkways staff, a generous gift (more later on that), and some professional help, a major improvement was born.  Not everything we had  wished for may have happened yet, but the best decisions from the plants people in charge developed the current implementation with resources available.  I hope everyone agrees this  is a win!

Thanks are due so many and I intend to let all know who made this possible soon.

Their generosity and work made this happen, and now we City Beautifiers must keep up with watering and weeding this gift.”

Robert Thompson

Here are some photos:

Before Robert Thompson made Capdevielle Place his mission, it was looking tired and lonely

 

The centerpiece of Capdevielle Place received palms and roses

 

Workers arrived early to begin the transformation

 

Work began immediately after the crew arrived

 

Everything is coming up roses at Capdevielle Place

 

Today, Capdevielle Place is an inviting respite due to the vision of Robert Thompson and help from enthusiastic volunteers and supporters

 

Paul Capdevielle (1842-1922)

Paul Capdevielle, the forty-second Mayor was of French descent. He was born in New Orleans, January 15, 1842. His father, Augustin Capdevielle, was born in France, but settled in New Orleans in 1825, becoming a prominent merchant in the commission business and active in politics. It was from his father’s interest in politics that young Paul inherited his interest in governmental affairs. His mother, Virginia Bertrand, was born in New Orleans in 1816.

Paul Capdevielle was educated at the Jesuit’s College in New Orleans from which he was graduated in 1861. He served with credit in the War between the States, enlisting in the New Orleans Guard Regiment of Infantry, but in 1862 joined Boone’s Louisiana Artillery, and was wounded at Port Hudson.
After the close of the war he returned to civil life, taking up the first employment that offered itself, studied law in April 1868 was graduated from Louisiana State University. In 1892, he gave up law to accept the presidency of the Merchant’s Insurance Company. He served as its President for sixteen years, until it was liquidated and sold.

His political history began in 1877 when he was appointed to the School Board. Later he was a member of the Orleans Levee Board, a Commissioner of Prisons and Asylums and Chairman of the Finance Committee of the drainage commission. Mr. Capdevielle was an outstanding figure in Louisiana politics from the time of his election as Mayor of New Orleans in 1899. He was appointed auditor of Public Accounts in 1904, and re-elected three times, and held this office up to the time of his death. He survived the political storms attending the fall of the state administrations, the last in 1920, when Governor Parker was swept into office.

The Flower administration was a turning point in the history of New Orleans. It closed one epoch and opened another. With it began the period of commercial prosperity which extends into the present time.
Mayor Capdevielle’s administration was noted for two events, both inseparably connected with the beginning of New Orleans’ industrial development; the installation of the modern sewerage system and the organization of the Public Belt Railroad. The Board of Port Commissioners also began to function actively during this period.

City Park stands as a monument to his energy and civic spirit. The upbuilding of the park was his constant care, and he served continuously as President of the City Park Improvement Association for more than two decades, holding the office at the time of his death.

The new administration went into office May 9, 1900, at the beginning of the twentieth century when a wave of prosperity passed over the country and was felt in New Orleans. Mayor Capdevielle in his inaugural address spoke of the drainage system about to be constructed and stated if the city desired to have its own electric light plant it could do so without great additional cost by using the power house of the drainage system.

The contract to erect a modern jail, to be called the House of Detention, was awarded for $112,800 and the site of the old Marine Hospital, on Tulane Avenue and Broad Street, was selected.
The Clay statue, being in the way of safe operations of the street cars, was removed from Canal Street to the Lafayette Square on January 12, 1901. The consolidation of various street railways into one corporation under the name of the New Orleans Railways Company was an important factor of the years 1901-1902.

On May 1, 1901, New Orleans was honored by the visit of the President of the United States, William McKinley, accompanied by Mrs. McKinley and Secretaries John Hay, Charles Emory Smith, and E. A. Hitchcock. He was received in the Cabildo by the Governor of Louisiana, attended by his staff in full uniform. The bells of the Cathedral of St. Louis announced the arrival of the President and his cabinet, escorted by Mayor Paul Capdevielle, and a committee of distinguished citizens. As the cortege entered the Supreme Court Hall, Chairman Zacharie announced in a loud voice “The President,” and the assembly arose and remained standing while the Chief Justice conducted the President to a seat of honor at his right on the Supreme Court Bench. The Governor of Louisiana took a seat on the left of the Chief Justice, and the Mayor of New Orleans the one on the right of the President, the Justices occupying seats immediately in the rear of the bench. Chairman Zacharie then conducted the members of the cabinet and their wives to places on the left of the dais, where a seat, filled with roses, had been reserved for Mrs. William McKinley, who, at the last moment, was too ill to attend.

In 1873, Paul Capdevielle married in New Orleans, Miss Emma Larue, who died several years ago. Three sons and two daughters blessed this union; the sons are Christian, Auguste and Paul, Jr., and the daughters are the Misses Edith and Yvonne Capdevielle.

Paul Capdevielle was found dead at his home in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, August 13, 1922, following a long illness, at the age of eighty years and six months and is buried in St. Louis Cemetery No. 2. Besides his children, a sister, Mrs. Virginia Buddecke and five grandchildren also survived.

Bicycle Vending on Esplanade Could Get Love in Triangles if Machines Scaled Down

Posted in Featured, HISTORY with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 3, 2017 by katrinafilm

photos courtesy Google Street View

Bicycle Vending on Esplanade

 

Bike Share Update – Transportation Committee 2.22.17

 

Recently, Robert Thompson, a long time Faubourg St. John resident, highlighted the new Bike Share program promoted by the City of New Orleans. You can read more about Robert’s concerns and the proposed plan in the link below:

http://fsjna.org/2017/02/pedal-power-advocate-raises-concerns-commericial-bicycle-rentals-parks/
Robert’s concern, one shared by many neighbors, is the possible placement of long bicycle vending machines in or around neighborhood parks. I began to think about where I would put bicycle vending machines on Esplanade if I wanted to maximize use and profit potential. It certainly would not be in parks.

What about placing smaller units in areas that do not take up any existing vehicle parking or use neighborhood park land? Many of Faubourg St. John’s parks are maintained by Faubourg St. John neighbors.

Commercial bicycle vending machines in commercial areas would get more exposure and therefore use. Since the vendor operator has refused to meet with Robert and other concerned neighbors, it gives more credence to Robert’s concern that the goal may be to place large vending machines in neighborhood parks.

Scaling down the size of the machines to fit on the following City-owned properties could get more support from neighbors:

Bicycle Vending on Esplanade

The triangle of land on the corner of Esplanade and Ponce de Leon is City-owned land.

This triangle of City-owned land would be perfect for a small bicycle vending machine. It’s next to the popular Cafe Degas and just steps from some of Faubourg St. John’s most frequented businesses. However, placing a bicycle vending machine here would take more thought and planning as the area has been landscaped by Cafe Degas and it is unlikely neighbors would want that disturbed. Click on the photo for a closer look at the City-owned land next to Cafe Degas.

Bicycle Vending on Esplanade

The triangle of land on Esplanade at Grand Route St. John is City-owned land.

This triangle of City-owned land at the corner of Esplanade and Grand Route Saint John is currently used as a bus stop. Bicycle vending machines located here would be an “impulse buy” and very convenient for those who may have been considering taking the bus but don’t want to wait for it to arrive. Click on the photo for a closer look at the bus stop shaded by a large oak tree.

Bicycle Vending on Esplanade

This lot at the intersection of LePage and Esplanade is City-owned land.

I suggested earlier that the vendor may want to consider smaller vending machines for areas along Esplanade. Here is a swath of City-owned land that could accommodate a larger bicycle vending machine. Click on the photo for a closer look at the area on Esplanade that could accommodate a larger bicycle vending machine.

Bicycle Vending on Esplanade

This triangle of City-owned land is across the street from a school and next to a coffee shop.

What better place for a bicycle vending machine than next to a coffee shop and across from a school? This area on Esplanade at Desoto is perfectly suited for this purpose.
Click on the photo for a closer look at the area by CC’s Coffee that could be used for a bicycle vending machine.

 

Bicycle Vending on Esplanade

Area at the corner of Broad and Esplanade.

This location is in the middle of an area surrounded by successful businesses frequented by many patrons. A bicycle vending machine located here would have the potential for much use. Click on the photo for a closer look at the area on Esplanade at Broad.

This has been an opinion piece by Charlie London

Update March 5, 2017:
Robert Thompson suggested that the area on Esplanade next to the Rent-a-Center on Broad would be a viable alternative to placing a bicycle vending machine in a park
Click on the photo for a closer look:

Bicycle Vending on Esplanade

UPDATE:
The placement of bike sharing machines will be discussed at the neighborhood association meeting this Tuesday, March 7th.

The meeting will be held in the Black Gold room at the Fair Grounds at 6:30 pm
The Fair Ground is located at 1751 Gentilly Blvd in New Orleans.
The Black Gold room is at the rear of the facility.

***********************************************************************

The City of New Orleans, in conjunction with Social Bicycles Inc. (SoBi), announced it will extend the preview of the City’s bike share program through March 31. 
 
During the extended preview, residents and visitors can sign-up and use one of the 35 bicycles to ride between seven temporary stations setup in Iberville, Downtown and Central City. Two additional bicycle racks will be available to end a ride or find a bike. 
 
“Bike share is the City’s newest and most convenient form of public transportation,” said Councilmember Jared C. Brossett, City Council Transportation and Airport Committee Chairperson. “It’s a network of bicycles and automated kiosks that allows users to arrange public transportation on their schedule. I am pleased that the City is extending the bike share preview to allow more users the opportunity to experience and embrace this service.”
 
During the extended preview period, riders can pay $15 to enjoy a 60 minute trip every day through March 31. The hourly rate is $8 per hour, pro-rated by the minute. Sign up using either the website https://nola.socialbicycles.com/ or by downloading the Social Bicycles app for iPhones and Android phones. There will also be greeters at various stations to help people signup and get started biking.
 
To allow more residents to participate in the preview, two bike stations will be relocated on March 1. Find a bike at anyone of the listed preview stations:
  • Basin Street & Bienville Street (near Magnolia Yoga Studio)
  • 501 Loyola Ave. (Near Hyatt)
  • Lafayette Square at Magazine Street
  • Decatur Street & Bienville Street (Through Feb. 28)
  • Baronne Street & Common Street (Near the Renaissance Pere Marquette Hotel)
  • Decatur Street & Barracks Street (near U.S. Mint through Feb. 28)
  • Magazine Street & Erato Street (Beginning March 1)
  • Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard & Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard (Beginning March 1)
  • 1000 Tchoupitoulas St. (near Cochon Restaurant)
  • 219 Loyola Ave. (Library Main Branch – existing bike racks)
  • Polymnia Street & St. Charles Avenue (near Avenue Pub – existing bike racks)
 
The full program, launching this fall, will consist of 70 stations with 700 bicycles and a guaranteed minimum future expansion of 90 stations with 900 bicycles. 100 percent of the bike share program will be privately financed through sponsorships, advertisements, and rental fees.
 
The fees for bike rental are:
  • Monthly Pass: $15 for unlimited trips up to 1 hour of riding a day (hourly rate thereafter).You can take as many trips as desired that all together add up to 60 minutes. For example, a 15-minute ride to work in the morning, a 5-minute ride for lunch; a 30 minute ride home with a quick stop to pick up some food totals 50 minutes for the day
  • Low-Income Pass: $1.67 per month ($20 per year) for unlimited trips up to 1 hour of riding a day (hourly rate thereafter)
  • Pay-as-you-go: $8 per hour of riding (pro-rated)
 
New Orleans has been growing rapidly as a bicycling city. The city was recognized as a bicycle friendly community in the Fall of 2014 by the League of American Bicyclists.
Last month, New Orleans was selected by People for Bikes as one of ten cities to participate in their Big Jump Project to reimage bicycle infrastructure.
For more information, please visit
http://www.peopleforbikes.org/placesforbikes/landing/the-big-jump-project
 
For additional information on the preview and the full program, please visit http://www.nola.gov/bikeshare

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March 7, 2017 statement from Dwight Norton:

In advance of tonight’s neighborhood association meeting, I wanted to provide a written response to some of the information/inquiries that have been raised thus far by those included here and I hope you will share with all other neighbors as well. I look forward to the opportunity to discuss further and address any and all concerns. I have also attached the status update presentation I gave to the City Council transportation committee for reference and will add this and additional materials to the website: http://www.nola.gov/bike-share/

First of all as an introduction, I am the City’s point person and project manager for bike share implementation as one of my jobs in improving transportation more holistically and efficiently for a more resilient and equitable city. Through a very open and public selection process last summer (link), the City awarded a 5-year exclusive use agreement to the best proposal, led by Social Bicycles, Inc. (SoBi) for 700 bicycles and 70 stations in phase 1.

1. Station selection process has only just begun and will be a public process. Many concerns have been voiced about the determination of the station locations. This process has always and continues to be an open one, designed for public participation. The oft referenced feasibility study was conducted in 2014 and merely serves as a reference point for our current efforts. It in no way is deterministic on station locations and furthermore was never intended as such. The maps are labelled as “conceptual” and do in fact have an unfortunately obscure disclaimer “Note: Station locations are roughly assigned to illustrate optimal station spacing…” The process for station location identification, which will be further discussed tonight, is as follows:
· January – April: introductions at neighborhood association meetings (I have completed 14 to date)
· March: potential candidate sites being developed by SoBi/City based on best practices and stated City goals (see #4)
· March 27 – April 11: Public workshops with maps for station siting recommendations/feedback
o Bayou St John/Mid City workshop is tentatively scheduled for April 3 at 630p
· April/May: online voting for station locations
· June: draft map of 70 stations incorporating public input
· August: final map
· October: launch

2. No paving any public parks, particularly small neighborhood ones. There is no budget or intent to pave over any green space for bike share stations. Despite the suggestion, the only possible exception would be in the case where there is a significant destination, connection transit or other protected bike infrastructure, technical problems with on-street alternatives, and strong community support. As an example, the very large neutral ground of Jeff Davis and Canal has a separated bike path, streetcar, active commercial and street flooding at the curb. Parks that will be considered would require other sounding destinations and excess paved area. An example is the large paved area off to the side of the entrance of Armstrong Park, set well back from the sidewalk, and across the street from a streetcar stop. Mr. London’s article recommending paved space adjacent to commercial nodes along Esplanade is exactly in line with best practices and our placement thinking: connect to local destinations: where would you as residents want a station to make it useful. This will be validated/refined at our aforementioned workshops.

3. Station size will be right-sized to meet demand and are more efficient use of public space. While stations have been referenced as “vending machines”, transit stations is a more appropriate analogy – they take up some public space and are gateways for accessing the system, including transaction. Most stations will not have a dedicated kiosk – our agreement with SoBi only includes 10 which will be strategically placed in areas with lots of pedestrian activity. There will be either a small or large panel based on residential or commercial nature of the area with wayfinding information and, in the case of large panels only, limited advertising – analogous to a bus station. Regarding the number of racks at a station, again the 2014 Feasibility Study is a reference and in our opinion inappropriate for recommendations on Esplanade. As noted by Mr. London, stations in neighborhoods are typically much smaller than in downtown core and busier commercial areas. The goal will be to anticipate demand and provide sufficient racks so bikes do not end up parked on poles. This may need to be adjust over time as the neighborhood finds the service increasingly desirable. Nearly all sites will be existing paved surface on street or sidewalks where space allows. Private space may be used only where the location is highly desirable and the land is publically available 24/7 (e.g. plaza outside a downtown high rise).

4. Station convenience is essential to a successful, equitable bike share program. The convenience of bike share, and thus is usefulness, is based directly on stations being evenly distributed. You should not have to walk more than 3 or so blocks to get to station. If so, it become far less convenient and people will not use it. When these basics are respected, not only does it prevent limited usage and thus financial insolvency (e.g. Seattle), it also has demonstrated people start driving less. In fact 25-52% less (study link; also click here and here for more information on best practices). Here again we deviate sharply from the 2014 Feasibility Study. Being a few blocks from a station means the stations will 4 to 7 blocks apart. Also remember it is a stated goal that we use bike share as a means to provide convenient, more reliable and cheaper alternatives to access jobs and other opportunities for improving lives. Cutting down on people’s transportation costs and travel time is shown consistently to be one of the biggest enablers of upward mobility (more time to raise kids, go back to school etc.). This clear evidence is what drives our equity goals as applied to transportation. We want to ensure access to bike share service extends as far as possible without compromising usability/sustainability.

5. Designing the system for residents knowing tourists will use it. In major tourist cities the world over, bike share does not compromise benefits to residents. Like any good transit system, if it is designed for residents, tourists will use as well. If it is design for tourists only they will use it. The City will ensure the system is designed for residents through two means: 1) station location process and 2) the pricing plans. For station locations, the previous section discusses how residents will inform that process. On the later, a higher cost $8 per hour plan subsidizes the significantly lower cost $15 per month plan (3 months equals one parking ticket!). There is also a $1.67 per month (or $20 per year) low income plan. In addition, the low income program will allow any residents to participate with or without credit card so that we can ensure the 12.5% unbanked (and 25.5% underbanked) members of our community have every opportunity to participate. And from a purely economic perspective, at $8 per hour, longer bike trips for touring or recreation will still make more sense on a rented or personal bike. In addition, the monthly passes are limited to 60 minutes of pedal time, which is a lot if you just think about it as transportation, but not very much if you plan on sightseeing. Bike share a one-way transportation system meant to get you from station A to station B and the pricing reflects that.

6. For-profit vendor model has historic precedent and is a win-win for residents. There have been several references and concerns that the model the City has chosen represents a commercialization of the city. First and foremost bike share is a transit system. Yes, it will be provided by a private entity, but it’s important to remember the service is still public and works very differently than rental. It is also worth remembering our beloved streetcars were all originally built and operated by private companies and only municipalized once labor costs and automobile adoption made service unable to break even. By using a 100% privately financed model, the vendor assumes financial risk for its performance – this is a great thing. This means all of the incentive for great customer service, excellent maintenance and marketing to attract users all falls on the vendor. Given the city’s limited resources for a major capital investment and ongoing costs, this structure is a great example of true public-private partnership for public benefit.

Thank you and look forward to discussing tonight and beyond,
Dwight

Dwight Norton
Urban Mobility Coordinator
City of New Orleans | Office of Resilience & Sustainability
1300 Perdido Street | New Orleans, LA 701116
Office: 504.658.7677

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Bike Share Update – Transportation Committee 2.22.17