City conducts meeting to discuss future of Six Flags

By Veronica Barbarin

New Orleans East residents, some in green shirts to show their support for bringing back the Jazzland amusement park, recently assembled at the newly constructed Franklin Avenue Baptist Church with hopeful expectation of hearing positive news regarding an assessment of the site which was once the location of one of New Orleans East’s main attractions — the 60-acre, former Six Flags / Jazzland amusement park.

Unfortunately, since the devastation of hurricane Katrina and the flooding that followed, the amusement park has been sitting untouched, for at least 14 years, with the exception of movie productions and vandalism.

Continue reading “City conducts meeting to discuss future of Six Flags”

Letter to the Editor

Lance Houpt, Principal

Playland NOLA

 

I would like to point out a few things from the “Strategic Opportunities Assessment” report. The conclusion appears to be:

“Based on the market context, the study area conditions, and input from stakeholders, the redevelopment opportunity for Jazzland with the highest potential to promote the community goals is an “education destination” that merges the benefits of the higher education and tourism sectors. The destination will be centered on the story and science of resiliency and climate change, providing research, innovation, education, and exploration opportunities. These opportunities will further and promote our understanding of living with water and propel New Orleans to be a leader in the global water economy.”

The gist of it is to me, is that they feel the target market/potential patrons/visitors would be ecotourists and visiting scholars doing research on the effects of climate change and water management. It doesn’t sound like there is a need yet for the facility they propose.

Continue reading “Letter to the Editor”

WWL TV Channel 4 releases series on ‘THE FORGOTTEN EAST’

Long term questions still unanswered

In the four-part series from Channel 4, serious concerns and issues that residents have raised for many years are addressed. In September 2009, I wrote an article titled “What’s Wrong with the East?” that was published in the Neighborhoods Partnership Network’s The Trumpet newspaper and on the then-active NOELA News website. Click here to read the NOELA News article.

Click on the links below to view the Channel 4 videos.

What Happened to New Orleans East?

The Forgotten East: Blight

The Forgotten East: The Youth

The Forgotten East: The Future

Economic Development Survey for Business Owners

As part of an effort to bring much needed growth to New Orleans East, NOELA Services is independently collecting information to provide to organizations whose goals include increasing economic development in the area.

This is one of several surveys to be distributed to determine what challenges exist for potential and existing business owners. This first survey is to be completed only by individuals who 1) previously or currently live in and/or own a business in New Orleans East; or 2) are considering operating a business in New Orleans East.

Please complete the survey only once per person and share the survey with other individuals who meet this criteria. The more feedback we receive, the better we can gauge the needs of the area. Your personal contact information will be used ONLY if further clarification is needed.

Please respond no later than August 31, 2019. Your participation is greatly appreciated. The next survey will target residents.

Complete the survey here.

The Future of Six Flags

Playland NOLA offers another view of what the former amusement park could be

Fourteen years after Hurricane Katrina, one of its most visible casualties, the 227-acre amusement park which has previously operated as both Jazzland and Six Flags theme parks, still sits abandoned. Residents are wondering, “Why hasn’t the site been redeveloped?”

In 2000 the park opened as Jazzland Theme Park, but by 2002, the debt was too great and they filed for bankruptcy. Six Flags then obtained possession of the site from the bankruptcy court. Six Flags had their own financial problems and eventually also filed for bankruptcy in 2009 which enabled them to cancel their lease with the City. The theme park did not reopen after Hurricane Katrina and the Industrial Development Board of the City of New Orleans (IDB) eventually took control of the site. During the 14 years that the park has sat idle, there were failed proposals to build a Nickelodeon theme park in 2009, an outlet mall in 2013, and numerous other plans to rebuild another amusement park — plans that the IDB has shown little interest in, due to lack of proof of funding and developers’ wherewithal. Continue reading “The Future of Six Flags”