Naval Support Activity Remediation Grant Information

 

Background

In October 2023, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awarded to the City of New Orleans a $2M Brownfields Cleanup Grant to address hazardous substances at the Naval Support Activities (NSA) East Bank Complex located at 4400 Dauphine St. Successful cleanup will allow for the pursuit of additional federal funding, leading to meaningful reuse of the property, beneficial to the surrounding community. One requirement of the EPA grant is to engage the local community regarding future use of the NSA site.

 

January 30, 2024 Community Visioning Meeting

On the evening of January 30, 2024, the City of New Orleans (City) and Kansas State University - Technical Assistance to Brownfields (KSU TAB) hosted a Community Visioning Meeting at the Stallings St. Claude Recreation Center, located at 4300 St. Claude Avenue. The primary purposes of the meeting were to inform the community of upcoming activities associated with the Cleanup Grant and to solicit public input regarding the reuse of the NSA site.

For a summary of this meeting, click here

Additionally, KSU TAB is providing to the City a series of site renderings prepared by Hitchcock Design Group, based on the property reuses selected by community members (see below).

 

Draft Analysis of Brownfields Cleanup Alternatives and Public Hearing 

The City Planning Commission held a public hearing on Tuesday, November 15, 2022 at 1:30 P.M. in the 21st Floor Conference Room of Orleans Tower, 1340 Poydras St., New Orleans, LA 70112 on the draft Environmental Protection Agency Cleanup Grant and Analysis of Brownfields Cleanup Alternatives.

2023 Draft Environmental Protection Agency Cleanup Grant – To consider the draft EPA Cleanup Grant application involving properties located in the Bywater, Holy Cross, St. Claude, and Lower Ninth Ward neighborhoods.     Draft EPA Cleanup Grant is available for viewing at the CPC office.  Please contact Kari Godchaux for more information.
Analysis of Brownfields Cleanup Alternatives – To consider the draft Analysis of Brownfields Cleanup Alternatives (ABCA) involving properties located in the Bywater, Holy Cross, St. Claude, and Lower Ninth Ward neighborhoods.  Click here for Draft ABCA

In addition to comments received at the public hearing, the City Planning Commission is accepting written public comments to the Executive Director by mail (1300 Perdido St, 7th Floor, New Orleans LA 70112) or by email at CPCINFO@NOLA.GOV.

April 21, 2015 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Barry Brantley from Carrollton

How long have you lived in the Carrollton neighborhood?

I've lived in New Orleans since November 1994, a little over 20 years now.

What do you love about your neighborhood?

I enjoy the quaintness of Carrollton. In my opinion, it's the “Mayberry” area of the city where almost everything you need is walkable: parks, public transportation, shopping, great restaurants, lively entertainment and longstanding neighbors.  In less than 10 minutes you can be downtown or in the French Quarter. Beautiful Oak boughs, river paths and family friendly parks provide safe temptations to get outside and enjoy the city.

What successes have you had in the Carrollton/Riverbend Neighborhood Association?

Since 2006, we have completed a short annual survey of our members through Survey Monkey to provide guidance to the CRNA leadership. We also host an Open House to invite neighbors to volunteer for committees and/or learn more about the goals for the coming year. Our association has grown significantly over the past few years with improvements in social networks. We have just under 300 registered members but well over 400 viewers in our Facebook and web blogs at www.crna-Nola.org through Wordpress.

I believe engagement and awareness of neighbors in Carrollton has improved too. While we have a diverse collection of subgroups representing different priorities for improvement, I believe the discussions are healthy, forward thinking and sincere. In my role of president for the association, I have learned more about the silos created over the past years due to low trust, and or participation. Understanding and respect are the first steps in my opinion to moving forward.

We've held a few community town forums this past year regarding education and community service needs that I believe provided direct priorities for developers in Carrollton. We've held a few social events like outdoor family movie nights, community gatherings and look to add neighborhood business after hour events.

Do you have any upcoming events or projects?

Our annual CRNA Membership meeting is Thursday, June 11th at Central  St. Matthew United Church of Christ, 1333 South Carrollton Avenue, 6-8 pm.

We are working with the New Orleans School Board regarding preservation opportunities of the Carrollton Courthouse, state legislators regarding a Carrollton Community Center and the Lycee Francais Charter School in the development of the former Priestly Middle School site. There are several private nonprofits in Carrollton such as Community Commitment, Inc.,  Leonidas House and several community gardens in which we  applaud their contributions and important role in Carrollton.

What advice would you give to other neighborhood leaders?

  • Understand and follow the bylaws of your organization.
  • Recruit and engage stakeholders
  • Hold yourself and your leadership accountable. Trust and transparency are necessary.
  • Add fun events to your schedule for the community. Movie nights, potluck meals, business open houses, etc. are all ways to bring community members together, even if it's 8-10 people at a time.

 

October 5, 2016 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Brenda Lomax-Brown

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How long have you lived in your neighborhood?

I moved into the Hollygrove-Dixon neighborhood in early 2006. My mother lived in the neighborhood for many years. After the storm, she wanted to return home. Because she could no longer live by herself, I left my Westbank neighborhood of 26 years and returned back to the city.

What do you love about your neighborhood?

I love the size and location of Hollygrove-Dixon. We are one of the smallest yet centrally located neighborhoods in the city. It's like going to the suburbs after a long day of hustle and bustle​. Our neighborhood is sandwiched between Airline Highway and the Pontchartrain Expressway. We are a 15 minute drive to the airport going west, and to Lake Forest going east. We are 5 minutes from the Superdome, City Hall, and the new medical complex on Tulane Ave. We are 10 minutes from Lakeside Mall and Oakwood Shopping Center.

What successes have you had in your neighborhood association?

One of our greatest successes was stopping a builder from building death trap houses. He has built several of these houses in the neighborhood. They are called "death trap" houses because there is only one door used as the entrance/exit. Although only 2 stories, the house is elevated. The base of a window on the first floor is more than 6'. One of these structures caught fire. The upstairs resident had to throw her children out of the window to the catching hands of neighbors. When she jumped, she broke both legs. The association president spoke with the builder about putting in a rear door, but the builder refused. He continued building these houses throughout the city. On his last attempt to build another on land acquired through NORA, we were able to stop his plans. He was then required to submit new architectural plans and include rear exits to the structure.

Do you have any upcoming events or projects?

We have several plans on the drawing board, i.e., a community garden and a playspot for our children. There are no playgrounds or parks. The park assigned to our neighborhood by NORDC is on the other side of an eight lane highway. Our greatest achievement has been an answer to the many, many, prayers for a Life Transformation Center or commonly called a community center. There were so many obstacles in our way but we continued to press forward, and will be moving into our center in the very near future.

What advice would you give to other neighborhood leaders?

My advice is "no matter how hard the battle gets or no matter how many people DON’T believe in your dream, never give up!” It’s difficult to wait, but more difficult to regret.

December 8, 2015 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Cynthia Harris from Zion City

How long have you been a resident of the Zion City neighborhood?

I moved to Zion City with my parents and my two siblings at the age of 5 years old. On S Gayoso St., I was baptized at James Chapel Baptist Church. We then moved to other areas of Uptown. I'm an Uptown girl! I had other relatives who also lived in Zion City. Although I lived elsewhere, my belief in God and Jesus Christ was rooted and grounded in Zion City and I continued to be an active member at James Chapel Baptist Church. I married a wonderful man by the name of James Harris in 2004--he also has roots in Zion City. After a brief stay in Dallas, Texas, we moved back to New Orleans and now reside in Zion City.

What do you love about your neighborhood?

What I love about my neighborhood is the closeness of the neighbors, who are longstanding in the community. Whether they have lived in Zion City for 20, 30, 40, 50,60 years as homeowners or renters, this is HOME! Let's get one thing straight: our community never overlapped into Gerke's Town (Gert Town) nor Marlyville. Zion City boundaries are 1401 S Broad to Howard Ave to S Jeff Davis to Washington Ave to 4001 Martin L King Blvd. The commercial and residential areas are divided by Earhart Blvd. You can stand on the Earhart Blvd neutral ground and see I-10 on the commercial side and the Washington Ave Canal on the residential side. The expanse of our community is 7 blocks wide and 4 blocks deep on both sides of Earhart Blvd. As the saying goes, "Sometimes larger is not best." 

What successes have you had with your association? 

Our first success as "New Zion" City Preservation Association ("NZ"CPA) is attributed to Tina Marquardt from Beacon of Hope and Janet Hays (Activist) and homeowners and renters coming together in peace to form this organization in 2012. The need in the community was great. How do we fight blight with only 29 homeowners ranging from 50 to 102 years of age and over 50% of overgrown weeded vacant lots? With the guidance and resources from Beacon of Hope, Foundation for Louisiana,
Neighborhood Partnership Network, Tulane University, and Xavier University we had our first successful year.
 
Our next successes from 2013 through 2015 were through collaborating with Councilmember Latoya Cantrell, who helped us defeat a cement batching plant and established an interim zoning district for Zion City. Through grants from Foundation for Louisiana, Neighborhood Community Building Initiative, Harrah's, Aaron's in Gretna and the Presbyterian Self-Development of People (SDOP), we were able to establish a 6 man community maintenance crew and purchase lawnmowers and other equipment. In two short years "NZ"CPA became a 501c3 organization. With the assistance of Alex Miller, we acquired ownership of 4236 & 4238 Erato St from Overbroad, LLC and Tulane University to create our own community pocket park. We also thank the thousands of out of town volunteers who assisted us in our goal to fight blight in Zion City.

Do you have any upcoming events or projects? 

And the work now begins!!! Our upcoming project is the completion of our community pocket park ("Zion City" Meditation Park) by spring of 2016. We are in need of volunteers to help with grading the soil and building a fence for the park. Another project we are now working on is the branding of Zion City--we plan to place welcome banners in the community. "NZ"CPA holds monthly community meetings every first Monday of the month at 6:30pm at Bridge House, 4150 Earhart Blvd, 2nd Floor. We thank Bridge House for allowing our meetings to be held at their venue! 

What advice would you give other neighborhood leaders?  

My best advice I can give to neighborhood leaders: "Be True to yourself, Be True to your community, Be True to your purpose & aim. Preserving the Past, Through the eyes of the Past, Through the eyes of the Now, To the eyes of the Future..." Isa 62

January 23, 2015 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Derrick Floyd from Faubourg St. Roch

We in the Neighborhood Engagement Office are proud to present 2015's first Get-to-Know-Your-Neighbor spotlight, Derrick Floyd, President of Faubourg St. Roch Improvement Association!  Mr. Floyd's passion and dedication to his community are inspiring, as you will see in our interview with him below.  

How long have you been a resident of Faubourg St. Roch?

I have lived in Faubourg St. Roch for 3 years. I'm a transplant from Carrollton, and I enjoy the diverse cultural presence of downtown.

What do you love about your neighborhood?

I love Faubourg St. Roch for its rich legacy. It's a neighborhood where New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson and renowned musician Deacon John grew up. A neighborhood for world travelers on bike tours come to get off the beaten paths of normalcy. And, the easy access to all of the amenities of living here: Interstate 610 and I-10, Sampson playground/St. Roch park, historic homes, St. Roch Cemetery, dynamic places of worship, art galleries, pop-up shops and restaurants.

What successes have you had in your association?

  • Elected two service and fiscal responsible boards in 2014 and 2015; with plans of expanding our board
  • FSRIA received multiple grants from the Foundation For Louisiana, Neighborhood Building Capacity Initiative and Caulfield Consulting Group to empower our capacity building efforts and to compact crime
  • ROCH FOR LIFE - A Summer challenge to spruce up the neighborhood
  • Hosted Crime Prevention Forum that yielded over 150 attendees

Do you have any upcoming events or projects?

We are revamping our website. Excitingly, the neighborhood is looking forward to the KaBoom! build at Sampson playground/St. Roch park and the opening of the St. Roch Market in March 2015.

What challenges does your neighborhood face?

The challenges we face are rampant throughout the city. We have blighted houses and lots; however, we have noticed an increased number of renovations and developments of land since Section 66 was implemented with assistance from FSRIA's Blight and Land Use committee. Other hurdles we must tackle are the distribution of drugs and lack of jobs.  There are businesses that are making an assertive effort to reach men and women challenged by the ills of society. Restoration Thrift, a product of the St. Roch CDC, is helping to make all things new; restoring confidence and hope in the most vulnerable.  I believe with their aid and others like them, the criminal elements we are experiencing will dwindle. These are challenges for my jewel, Faubourg St. Roch, and for all downriver communities.

Do you have any advice for other neighborhood leaders? 

The work is challenging; therefore, leaders must consider their "WHY", and collaborate with sister associations across the avenues and canals to have their purposes fulfilled.

 

If you'd like to nominate a neighborhood leader to be spotlighted in our monthly post, email Laura Mellem or call 504-658-4982.

August 29, 2016 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Jacob Rickoll from Tulane-Canal

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How long have you lived in your neighborhood?

I purchased my home at on the 2300 block of Conti Street in April of 2015, but I was born and raised in New Orleans. I’m proud to be a resident of the Tulane-Canal Neighborhood Association (TCNA).

What do you love about your neighborhood?

I hate driving! I love being in the Mid-City area because it’s close to everything. I’m a nursing student at LSU HSC and am employed at Crescent Care Clinic and Tulane Hospital, both of which are just minutes away. I also love being close to City Park and the Lafitte Greenway, because I love to run. The Greenway’s paths to the park are well-lit and heavily trafficked with other bikers and runners. I can feel safe while enjoying my run. Being able to walk to the French Quarter or Broad Street Theater is priceless to me. I also love the diversity in the people of my neighborhood. It’s one of the reasons that I always wanted to stay in NOLA. I love that I can look down my street and see both young professionals and retired elderly. Everyone contributes something special in their own way.  

What successes have you had in your neighborhood association?

So when my partner, Jason, and I purchased the home last April, we just assumed that we were part of the Mid City Neighborhood Association (MCNO). One day, we were volunteering at a trash pick up event along Lafitte Greenway and learned that the MCNO boundary was actually Broad Avenue. After more research, I learned that no neighborhood association even existed for my area, the boundaries of which consisted of Broad Ave., Saint Louis St., Claiborne Ave., and Poydras St. So my partner and I then reached out to neighbors, mostly through social media like Nextdoor and Facebook, and met for coffee. What started with just 6 or 7 of us has grown to an official neighborhood association with monthly meetings with attendance averaging in the 30s to 40s. I’m currently the President of TCNA. While I have the best of intentions, I’m certainly not very experienced with running a neighborhood association. Fortunately, Councilwoman Cantrell’s office and the Mayor’s Office and even surrounding neighborhood associations like MCNO have been tremendously helpful and are coaching me patiently and lending to me every available resource. While still in our infancy, our neighborhood has had several successful neighborhood cleanups, partnered on several NPPs with local businesses, and appropriately advocated for local residents in City Hall Chambers. 

Do you have any upcoming events or projects?

We do plan to host something for the “Night Out Against Crime” in October. Once the weather cools, we also will be having more neighborhood cleanups. We just had a “Mixer” at Avery’s Restaurant on Tulane Ave. last week with our neighbor, MCNO. It was fun but also a great networking opportunity for neighbors, so I look forward to more of those. We are working with the "Welcome Table New Orleans" on some upcoming projects and are always thrilled to support the ReFresh and Lafitte Greenway folks with all the things they have going on. Meanwhile, however, the residents remain acutely focused on resolving the bigger problem of our area, which is still blighted property. We have so many overgrown lots and abandoned buildings that harbor unhealthy behavior and dangerous activity. While it is refreshing to see spots of progress, it is not nearly reaching the potential that it should. 

What advice would you give to other neighborhood leaders?

My best advice to other neighborhood leaders is to learn the resources of your community. New Orleans is a terrific city with amazing people. Get to know them and find out what they can contribute. Everyone is useful in their own way. Help others realize their potential to improve the community and that everyone’s opinion matters. Don’t be scared to think outside the box. Listen to the concerns of your neighbors, but listen to understand. Don’t just give them time to speak and move on with your own agenda. When you disagree, and there will always be disagreement amongst neighbors, remind your neighbors to attack the issue, not the group. Criticize the policy, not the official. Condemn the behavior, not the person. The rest is just time management and staying organized. 
 

October 13, 2015 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Julius Lee from Real Timbers

How long have you been a resident of the Real Timbers neighborhood?

16 Years

What do you love about your neighborhood?

I love the quietness and low crime activity in the neighborhood.

What successes have you had with your association? 

Over the past twelve years we have had many successful events including a neighborhood fun run/walk, night out against crime activities with a candle light neighborhood walk,  an Algiers community cleanup rally, as well as a community carnival fair.

Do you have any upcoming events or projects? 

I will be asking my neighbors and other Algiers neighborhoods to volunteer to help my nonprofit organization, S.M.C.L. Foundation & Associates Paralympic Sport Club New Orleans with our upcoming community Adaptive/Paralympics Sports and Recreation event on December 11, 2015.  This event will foster activities for the community’s wounded veterans, along with our youth and other adults with physical disabilities, blindness or visual impairment. The location of the event will be announced by October 31, 2015.    

What advice would you give other neighborhood leaders?  

To be successful in anything, you will encounter some ups and downs; however, when things seem to be working against you, when you are down, stay prayed up and continue to press forward.  However, when thing are going real swell, I caution you to guard against pride, because “Only by pride cometh contention, but with the well advised comes wisdom.” (Proverbs 13:10)     

May 2, 2017 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Katherine Prevost

 

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How long have you lived in your neighborhood?

Gosh, I’ve been here since I was 16 years old. A long time. 50 years almost. 

What do you love about your neighborhood?

I love everything about my neighborhood. People take care of each other and look after each other. I love the people, everything is really close so I can walk to it. It’s clean, but we’ve got some blight issues we’ve got to figure out. I find myself trying to figure out how to bring this neighborhood back in the right way. 

What successes have you had in your neighborhood?

After Katrina, we helped create and rebuild houses in this neighborhood. I felt that keeping homes affordable was very important. Katrina made me want to do things and get active in the neighborhood. 

Based on your successes in Bunny Friend, what advice would you give to other neighborhood leaders?

I think it’s important that we listen to what’s going in the neighborhood to see how we can make necessary changes. When residents have concerns, it’s important to make sure we can make everybody happy in the community. 

Why do you love New Orleans?

I love everything about New Orleans. I love the way people greet you when you see them on the street, regardless of who you are. I love hanging out with my family and friends. It’s a different kind of culture than anything you can imagine. My husband was in the Navy for 22 years so I’ve seen all parts of the world, and there is nowhere like this place. 

 

 

October 3, 2014 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Linda Williams from Rosedale

Linda Williams

I recently had the opportunity to sit down with Ms. Linda Williams, president of Rosedale Homeowners' Association, to talk about her community and the work she does with the association. For those of you who don't know, Rosedale is a community located in New Orleans East with the boundaries of I-10, America St, Old Gentilly Rd, and Dwyer Rd. I am excited to publish our conversation as the first in a series of "Get to Know Your Neighbor" posts from the Neighborhood Engagement Office.

 

How long have you been a resident of Rosedale Subdivision?

I have been a resident of Rosedale my entire life. In fact, I live on the same lot that I grew up on since birth. I relocated to another city in my early adult life but I returned to raise my family.

What do you love about your neighborhood?

My neighborhood is very close-knit. Everyone looks out for each other and most of us have grown up here, so we appreciate the history of our neighborhood.

What successes have you had in your association?

Forming our association in 2006 was a huge accomplishment for my neighborhood. We look forward to rebuilding our neighborhood with existing families and new families.

Do you have any upcoming projects?

We are currently planning a celebration for all of our returning neighbors who have rebuilt their homes since Hurricane Katrina.

What challenges does your neighborhood face?

Like many neighborhoods in New Orleans, our challenge is abandoned lots. We hope to encourage more of the lot owners to maintain their lots and attract new families to buy and build on available lots. We also have an apartment complex (Haydel Heights) we would like redeveloped.

Do you have any advice for other neighborhood leaders?

Listen to your neighbors and be a voice for your community.

 

If you'd like to nominate a neighbor for an upcoming Get to Know Your Neighbor spotlight, email me at kjshelly@nola.gov.

March 27, 2015 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Maggie Carroll from Broadmoor

This month’s Get to Know Your Neighbor features Maggie Carroll, newest president of the Broadmoor Improvement Association (BIA). BIA is one of the oldest neighborhood associations in New Orleans.  Established in 1930 as the Broadmoor Civic Improvement Association to address the needs of the developing Broadmoor neighborhood, it was incorporated in 1970 as the Broadmoor Improvement Association, Inc. to stop “blockbusting” in Broadmoor which was at the time a well-established, multi-racial/multi-ethnic community already living in harmony.  Since that time, the BIA has worked continuously to improve the neighborhood - stopping commercialization in the residential core, reducing crime, and ensuring that educational and civic organizations thrive.  The BIA works closely with the city government and has represented Broadmoor residents in numerous cases concerning zoning and other issues. The BIA is here to address the needs of the residents by engaging the community and building consensus among residents as to their vision for a revitalized neighborhood. Broadmoor has become a model for citizen-led recovery efforts.

How long have you been a resident of the Broadmoor neighborhood?

My husband and I brought our home in 2002, (13 years old). Originally we rented in the Uptown neighborhood but loved the diversity of the Broadmoor neighborhood. 

When did you join Broadmoor Improvement Association?

I joined the association two days after moving into our new home when a neighborhood stopped over with a cake and a BIA membership form, urging the new homeowners to get engaged; by 2005 I had become an active board member of the association.

What do you love most about your neighborhood?

I love that Broadmoor is a diverse and affordable neighborhood and is a true representation of the city’s population and culture. Broadmoor offers several amenities including a Education Corridor which offers community programming for all ages.

What successes have Broadmoor Improvement Association had over the years?

For more than a century, our residential neighborhood has lived and thrived in the geographic heart of New Orleans. Broadmoor flooded badly in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. A Bring New Orleans Back Commission preliminary report map showed Broadmoor as a suggested area to be turned into park land; this suggestion is strongly objected to by residents. With many questioning our community's survival, we rallied to become a model for disaster recovery. The association held over 100 community meetings with residents and stakeholder to develop the Broadmoor Redevelopment Plan. From that plan the Broadmoor Education Corridor was born, a community nexus of educational and cultural institutions including four main anchors: the Andrew H. Wilson Charter School, Rosa F. Keller Library & Community Center, South Broad Community Health as well as the future Arts & Wellness Center. Most recently, the South Broad Community Clinic opened at the corner of Washington Ave. and South Broad Ave. The clinic will offer affordable primary healthcare to Broadmoor and the surrounding areas. View a complete list of programming offered along the Education Corridor.

What challenges does your neighborhood currently face?

Despite our many successes, Broadmoor is still plagued with the same issues as many other neighborhoods including eradicating blight, aging infrastructure and combating neighborhood crime. Recently, BIA established a Quality of Life Committee to work with City Agencies and non-profit partners to address their issues.

Are there any upcoming events or projects in the neighborhood?

On Saturday, March 21, 2015, BIA held “Metamorphosis” a fundraiser to support our new Arts & Wellness Center and an opportunity to celebrate this next stage of the Broadmoor community's transformation. During the event, guests took part in a community art-making process that will eventually be installed in the atrium of the Arts and Wellness Center. BIA is still seeking donations to assist with the operational cost of opening the new center which is expected to open this summer. The new Arts and Wellness Center will include 1) workshop and studio space for practicing artists; 2) education for aspiring artists and creative professionals; 3) office space for arts organizations and non-profits; 4) affordable youth arts education; 5) counseling, yoga and fitness. For more information or to donate to the Arts and Wellness Center please contact Emily Wolff, 504-481-7998 fineartsandwellness@gmail.com.

Do you have any advice for other neighborhood leaders?

As a leader, the best advice I can offer other leaders is to be an active listener. At times, leaders can get so distracted by the work that we miss the opportunity to develop other leaders.

For more information on the Broadmoor Improvement Association please visit the association website: www.broadmoorimprovement.com

April 28, 2016 | From City of New Orleans

Get to Know Your Neighbor: Spotlight on Mona Lisa Saloy

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How long have you lived in the 7th Ward?


I was born and raised in the 7th Ward. I moved out west where I completed my undergraduate and early graduate education, but I’ve lived here longer than anywhere else, and I continue to love it.

What do you love about your neighborhood?
 

I love the folks who are so creative--just hard-working, earnest folks, carving a living and a life, the way we take time for each other; the rich culture makes life here sweeter, vivid, and I’m thankful for it.

What successes have you had in your organization?
 

In our first big effort, we helped to coordinate the rebuilding of Hunter’s field, successfully proposed the lovely mural by neighborhood fine artist Richard C. Thomas and 35 young artists. We hold annual nights out against crime. Last year, we, with a grant from First Books, gave almost 400 books to teens and tweens in the neighborhood. We also learned to make rain barrels, deter standing water, and studied growing food. This year, we hope to bring LEH’s Prime Time Family Reading Time into our neighborhood, host demos of native Craftsmen demonstrating the old-world artistic crafts for which we are known, and to publish a tour booklet.

Do you have any upcoming events or projects?
 

Yes. We are now part of the Treme/7th Ward Cultural District; and with Treme, we are hosting the first ever T7 Fest, the Treme/7th Ward Arts & Culture Festival, which will be held Memorial Day weekend with Friday panels on the historic Architecture, Foodways, Building Trades at The Autocrat Social & Pleasure club.  Saturday will be a concert and festival under the Claiborne Avenue overpass, and Sunday culminates in a musical brunch with local choirs, St. Raymond/St. Leo the Great and other guests.

What advice would you give to other neighborhood leaders?


First, I consider myself a good neighbor, then an author & educator & Folklorist.  My role is to listen, communicate what I learn, and help in what ways I can to represent us, so that someone is at the table when our area is discussed; mostly, I work to encourage active citizenship.

Our goals are, as our mission states:

We aim to enhance and improve the quality of life in the 7th Ward, to promote active citizenship, and to preserve and promote the art, culture, environment, and heritage of our neighborhood, for the enjoyment and safety of its members and residents.

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