12 FEBRUARY 2004 PRESERVATION IN PRINT How did New Orleans change? Wins and losses in 2003 AMERICAN SECTOR ▪ Restoration nears completion of the ir handsome Bradford Building and St. Joseph warehouse, future home of the Arts Council, and new construction is underway on the site to connect the two buildings. The old Hibernia Homestead building al at Carondelet and Union Streets col- lapses as piles are driven on the adjacent lot for construction of a parking garage. The CBD Historic District "r ▪ .1 Landmarks Commission approves a compromise with developers allowing a row of masonry warehouses along Julia and Fulton streets and Convention Center Blvd. to be demol- ished, leaving only the outside walls. A new hotel will be built on the site incor- porating the facades, with no additional height constructed over the facades. op Harrah's application to demolish 5 historic buildings in the Warehouse Historic District in order to construct a hotel on Poydras gives rise to months of meetings, negotiations, and press conferences. Ultimately, a compro- mise is reached, with some buildings being demolished and others gutted for use as a drive-in entrance to the hotel. ▪ The old Hurwitz-Mintz warehouse "Ir on Tchoupitoulas Street becomes the stunning new Renaissance Arts Hotel, over-flowing with intriguing work by local artists and a welcome addition to the Warehouse District. Renovation of the corner of IT Diamond and Tchoupitoulas streets, across from the PRC, begins a transfor- mation of the Warehouse District block, slated to house condos and businesses. The property was originally sold at an auction held at the PRC by Gilmore Auction & Realty, and the renovation has been eagerly awaited. ▪ Chez Clay moves in 800 block of Tchoupitoulas, yet another renova- tion in the area immediately surrounding the PRC, which relocated to the Ware- house District in 2000. ▪ McIlhenny Co., producers of Tabasco IT products, buys 2 townhouses on Julia Row and the former Hummingbird Grill on St. Charles and begins restoring the complex as its New Orleans headquarters. The company is working with the State Historic Preservation Office and the CBD- Historic District Landmarks Commission to ensure the highest quality renovation. The property is located in the Lafayette Square Historic District. ▪ Lee Circle gets new condos; St. "r Joseph condos at 861 Carondelet add more living space downtown; the Bakery goes condo in the Warehouse District; and good sales at 416 Common Street in Picayune Place Historic District and 625 St. Charles in the Lafayette Square Historic District prove that down- town is now down home. Bruno & Bruno law firm renovates T vacant building at corner of Howard Avenue and Baronne into stunning office and residential space. Ogden Museum opens on Camp ir Street to much fanfare and good reviews, and the Confederate Museum settles legal issues allowing it to remain between the "O's" two spaces. The American Sector is earning its reputation as the arts district. BROADMOOR This wedge-shaped neighborhood just north of S. Claiborne Avenue Uptown gains National Register Historic District status on June 20, 2003. By year's end, the neighborhood becomes home to two City Planning staff members and a Preservation Reservation Resource Center department director. BYWATER Steve Lesser purchases a long-neg- T lected industrial building at 3327 Chartres St., planning to revitalize it for residential and commercial use using funds generated by the sale of his Tchoupitoulas warehouse to the Convention Center. (see Lower Garden District) The old St. Claude Medical Center, lir slated for closure, was bought by a group of local doctors and is now operat- ing as the Bywater Hospital. The city's first brownfield remedia- tion and adaptive reuse project is being undertaken in the 3300 block of Chartres. _a_ Planning stage for Desire wr I. Streetcar project is completed, generating much optimism for downtown neighborhoods and businesses, however, the proposed project is in jeopardy because Norfolk Southern Railroad is unwilling to consider an at-grade cross- ing for Press Street. (Furthermore, the trains continue to cause neighborhood gridlock, blocking all intersections for up to 45 minutes.) The proactive cooperative planning 1r effort—by Naval Support Activity, the Maritime Administration, the Port Authority, City Hall, Regional Planning Commission, Chamber, the neighbor- hood, and others—is developing a strate- gy for the adaptive reuse of the Port of Embarkation as a cruise ship terminal, with retail and residential components, in an effort to offset the consolidation of east and west bank operations of NSA. CARROLLTON Stuart Hall, a private school, is "I" determined to stay and expand in its present location on Carrollton Avenue, however, the decision involves demolition of 3 houses and possibly 2 more, result- ing in strong neighborhood opposition. The school offers to donate some of the homes if the recipient pays to relocate them, but the cost is prohibitive. Stuart Hall donates salvage material to non- profits. The Whitney Bank begins construc- T tion of its newest branch at the cor- ner of S. Carrollton Ave. and Plum Street. The Eskew + Filson design promises to contribute to the character of the avenue. The Board of Zoning Adjustments T denies Riverlake Properties' occu- pancy permit for an office, storage and parking at Burthe and Adams streets, thus reaffirming the Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance's intention to disallow noncon- forming uses that are inconsistent with the purpose of the ordinance. Neighbors declared a victory for maintaining the area's residential quality. CENTRAL CITY Felicity Street Redevelopment ir Project continues to purchase/stabi- lize/resell abandoned properties along the Lower St. Charles Corridor (including Baronne, Carondelet and O.C. Haley) through its revolving fund. To date, the non-profit has saved over 20 buildings, bringing "neighbors back to the neigh- borhood." The PRC completes renovation of IT the landmark Kid Ory house at 2135 Jackson Ave., winning an award for excellence from the HDLC. The first "jazz house" rescued and renovated through the efforts of the PRC's African American Heritage Preservation program, Compromise in American Sector on Convention Center Blvd. between saving facades and keeping height in scale with Warehouse District Renovation of old Hurwitz-Mintz ware- house into grand Renaissance Arts Hotel, 700 Tchoupitoulas St., Warehouse District Corner of Tchoupitoulas and Diamond streets in the Warehouse District www.prcno.org