LeighAnna Margurite Awarded Miss Earth Title

LeighAnna Margurite, daughter of Veronica Darby, competed in the Miss Earth® USA pageant on August 8, 2020.  LeighAnna, who was previously awarded the title of Miss Louisiana Earth, won the title of Miss Earth® USA Fire 2020 in the official preliminary competition to Miss Earth® USA.


LeighAnna Margurite Miss Louisiana Earth
LeighAnna Margurite, Miss Louisiana Earth

LeighAnna dedicated numerous hours in the community sharing tips on how small changes in what we do to the earth can have huge impacts on saving our planet. She is planning a cleanup as part of World Cleanup Day on September 19, 2020, sponsored by Miss Earth® USA. To participate, follow LeighAnna on Instagram @MissEarthUSAFire.

Congratulations, LeighAnna!


Lincoln Beach Status Update

Department of Public Works’ construction contractors are currently at Lincoln Beach removing debris, clearing overgrown landscaping and repairing structures deemed to be in imminent danger of collapse by licensed engineers.

This work is being done as part of a larger Site Assessment which began in May 2020 and is scheduled to be completed and available for review in the spring of 2021

Access to the Lincoln Beach site is prohibited; however, there is ample evidence of unpermitted and unlawful use of the beach and property behind the  Lake Pontchartrain and Vicinity earthen levee and floodwall on Hayne Blvd. 

Read more at: https://www.nola.gov/dpw/environmental-affairs-division/lincoln-beach-site-assessment/

City Council Addresses Blight with Passage of Redevelopment Plan for Holiday Inn on Chef Menteur Highway

Holiday Inn on Chef Menteur Highway
Exterior photo of the blighted property along Chef Menteur Highway

New Orleans City Council. The New Orleans City Council passed Zoning Docket 51/20, approving a conditional use to permit the redevelopment of the “Caveman” Hotel located at 6324-6400 Chef Menteur Highway in New Orleans East. This zoning change will facilitate the transformation of the former Holiday Inn, bringing the blighted property back into commerce after fifteen years of vacancy. 


The structure, which was built in the 1960s and opened as a Holiday Inn in 1969, is one of the first buildings seen from the Interstate when crossing the Industrial Canal into New Orleans East. Situated in plain view of the Interstate, it has become a canvas for large-scale graffiti that now characterizes the derelict hotel more commonly known as the “Caveman” in reference to the large sprawling graffiti letters covering the entire facade.


The building will be renovated using Historic Tax Credits with commercial space on the first floor and 144 one-bedroom apartments on the remaining eight floors. The applicant will remodel the entire structure while maintaining the original “Holiday Inn” style and facade and plans to install new green and open space and modify the parking area to incorporate stormwater management and landscape features. 


The approval of this zoning docket represents a huge win for New Orleans East and specifically, Chef Menteur Highway, which is in great need of additional commercial and residential uses throughout the area.