City Council Relinquished Rights to Street Grid on Hospital Site

The City Council adopted Ordinance Calendar Number 28, 457, authored by Council members Head and Clarkson, to authorize the revocation of dedication and transfer to the State of Louisiana of those portions of properties within the footprint of the proposed University Medical Center.
MCNO attended this meeting and provided a position statement requesting the City Council to HOLD ON THE REVOCATION OF THE STREET GRID until funding for the hospital has been confirmed and the City has adequately considered the impact of street closures on the traffic patterns.
Council member Head offered two Amendments to the ordinance. Amendment one required that if relocation or preservation of the McDonogh #11 School building is not accomplished, mandatory deconstruction or salvage would be necessary. Amendment two required that if any material plan revisions are made, the New Orleans City Planning Commission Staff recommendation and Mayoral approval would be mandatory. Landrieu Administration Deputy Mayor and Chief Administrative Officer Andy Kopplin and Louisiana State University Medical Center officials appeared together before the City Council. Deputy Mayor/ CAO Kopplin explained that the Administration had worked over the last year to impact the design of UMC. Among the recommended changes incorporated by the State of Louisiana were, retaining the original street grid and historic properties; eliminating surface parking lots; the addition of a second parking garage to the complex; and the requirement of liner buildings along the outside of the UMC footprint for commercial and retail uses. CAO Kopplin emphasized that these revisions have enhanced the design of the complex and made it more pedestrian and urban friendly.
District “B” Council member Head said, “We need to step back and look at what’s good for our city, as a whole. Nothing will make my commitment to the hospital any less, but we must be realistic and cautious about the building plans. This ordinance, with the amendments, will aid in accomplishing this end.”
Other opponents of the street closures maintain the process is being rushed before the hospital’s funding is assured and number of beds is supported. Today, a consultants report was released showing that the proposed size of the hospital may be more than what is needed. MCNO will continue to rally for the protection of neighbors who live near the footprint of the hospital and for reliable traffic studies for the Mid-City area.
For questions on this topic or to get more involved contact the BioDistrict Committee Chair, Lili LeGardeur, at

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