Blighted Orleans Levee District police station to be rebuilt
The Orleans Levee District has authorized the rebuilding of the blighted police station on Elysian Fields and Lakeshore Drive. The 9,000 ft² building will be the new Orleans Levee District police headquarters and will be rebuilt for no more than $3 million. The Orleans Levee District police station has remained blighted since Hurricane Katrina.
On Aug. 18, the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East (SLFPA-E), which oversees levee operations for East Jefferson, St. Bernard Parish, and all of the east bank of New Orleans, had a Board of Commissioners meeting in the St. Bernard Government building in Chalmette. The Board approved of the project, and Orleans Parish Constable Lambert Boissiere III and Lake Oaks Civic Association President Van Robichaux both expressed support at the meeting for the property’s redevelopment.
“I think it’s going to be a big influence to the Lakefront,” Boissiere said in a phone call. “Added security is of everyone’s concern.”
Boissiere noted that the NOPD doesn’t have the numbers that they’d like on the workforce, so they could use the assistance. Robichaux said the return of this visible police presence could help with traffic down Elysian Fields.
“It’s a perfect location for what’s going to probably be a busy spot in a year from now, when they start reintroducing people to the Pontchartrain beach station,” Robichaux said in a phone call.
According to Robichaux, the Lake Oaks area is quiet, so he doesn’t have any particular security concerns that he thinks the new police presence could immediately address.
Captain Bodreaux of the Orleans Levee District Police said that along with providing more access to the public, the redevelopment of the police station also contains a historical aspect.
“I think it’s more of an opportunity to put us back,” Bodreaux said.
Wilma Heaton, Director of Governmental affairs for the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East, said that redevelopment of the station is expected to be finished in about a year. She said the project was paid for by the Orleans Levee District Flood Division.
“We hope to demolish the site by end of the year,” Heaton said.
[Update: This post originally did not state Wilma’s Heaton’s information on when the redevelopment of the police station may be completed and that the redevelopment was paid for by the Orleans Levee District Flood Division.]