French President Emmanuel Macron plans to visit New Orleans, Vieux Carre

Photo by Jacques Paquier | CC Flickr.
France’s President Emmanuel Macron is scheduled to visit New Orleans on Friday and will mark the latest visit by a French head-of-state to visit the city in nearly 50 years, according to an announcement by the French consulate.

Macron plans to visit the Big Easy for the final leg of his visit to the U.S. and will include a walking tour of the French Quarter, a meeting with Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, among other events, according to nola.com.

Consulate officials told the newspaper that the purpose of the visit is to address issues such as climate change, cultural affairs, in addition to strengthening ties between Louisiana and France.

Macron’s visit to New Orleans is the latest visit to the city since former president Valéry Giscard d’Estaing came in 1976, according to the consulate.

The newspaper reported that Macron’s visit will start in Jackson Square, where Mayor LaToya Cantrell will greet him, followed by a walk through the French Quarter and then a meeting with Edwards at the Historic New Orleans Collection to discuss climate change. Edwards and Macron are expected to sign an agreement to add a French energy transition expert to the governor’s Climate Initiatives Task Force, according to nola.com.

The French consulate in New Orleans is located at 909 Poydras Street, Suite 1450. For more information, visit the consulate’s website.

2 weeks after the 38th #Francophonie Summit in Djerba, President Emmanuel Macron ’s visit to #NewOrleans will be a unique opportunity to address this key cultural aspect at the heart of the 🇫🇷/⚜️ relationship and a reminder of Louisiana’s identity!

North Rampart Street armed robbery suspects claimed victim stole gas, NOPD says

A 66-year-old man said he was accused of stealing gasoline by four male individuals, who then allegedly robbed him of his money and keys following a Saturday verbal altercation on North Rampart Street.

The incident occurred on Saturday in the 400 block of North Rampart Street although the male victim, who wasn’t identified, didn’t report the incident until shortly before 9 a.m. on Monday, according to New Orleans Police.

After the verbal altercation, NOPD said one suspect showed a gun while the other suspects stole the victim’s keys and money. Officers were notified at the time of the incident and responded to the scene to stop the altercation and had the parties leave the scene, according to the NOPD.

NOPD said the suspects weren’t identified, but were described as four Black males.

A second, unrelated robbery was reported on Monday in the 300 block of Bourbon Street, according to the NOPD.

NOPD said the incident occurred at about 2:42 p.m. and involved two Black males, one of whom grabbed the victim and held him while the other suspect took a wallet from his pocket.

The suspects then fled from the scene, according to the NOPD.

Police said that anyone with information on either two incidents is asked to contact the NOPD at 504-658-6080.

18-year-old man arrested in connection to Bourbon Street shooting that injured 5 people

New Orleans Police on Monday said officers have arrested an 18-year-old man in connection to a Bourbon Street shooting that injured five people on Sunday.

Eighth District NOPD officials said they’ve arrested Dashawn Myre, following an investigation into the shooting that injured five people in the 200 block of Bourbon Street shortly before 2 a.m. on Sunday.

Officers patrolling in the area quickly responded to a call of shots fired and upon arrival, located the five victims who sustained non-life threatening gunshot wounds, according to the NOPD.

Police said two males, 18-year-old and 17-year-old, were initially detained after the shooting and were subsequently arrested for one count each of illegal possession of a concealed firearm.

Through an investigation, NOPD said the 18-year-old — identified as Myre — as the shooter and booked him into the Orleans Parish Justice Center on suspicion of five counts aggravated second-degree battery and one count of illegal use of a weapon.

New Orleans Police noted that Myre is innocent until proven guilty.

Anyone with additional information on this incident is urged to contact NOPD Eighth District detectives at 504-658-6080. Anonymous callers can contact Crimestoppers of Greater New Orleans at 504-822-1111 or toll-free at 1-877-903-7867.

City Council overturns VCC, approves gallery on Bourbon Street building

The New Orleans City Council earlier this month approved an appeal by a Bourbon Street bar to install a gallery along the second floor, overturning the decision by the Vieux Carre Commission denying the application.

At their Nov. 17 meeting, City Council members voted 5-1 to approve the motion granting the appeal to Fat Catz Music Club, allowing the business to proceed with constructing a gallery on the second floor of the building located at 440 Bourbon Street.

Lesli D. Harris, District B councilmember, voted against the motion, which was put forth by District C Councilmember Freddie King, who represents the French Quarter.

“This building’s located in the Vieux Carre entertainment district, the French Quarter’s most intensive zoning district, which is more permissive around everything from lighting to signage,” King said. “The VCC guidelines are just that — guidelines, not requirements.”

Nathan Chapman, president of the Vieux Carre Property Owners, Residents and Associates, which advocates for preserving French Quarter buildings, said he was shocked that the City Council voted to allow the “inappropriate alteration of the building.

“The public’s concerns went beyond the fact that the City Council voted to obscure and obliterate a rare architectural feature – its entresol floor – on the building,” Chapman said. “There was also strong objection that the applicant never submitted architectural plans to the VCC, like citizens and other businesses are required to do. Instead, they turned in an architectural sketch. That alone should have merited a denial to the proposal.”

Advocates who spoke during public comment at the meeting said that the ceiling on the second floor is too low to install a gallery and that the addition would be “anachronistic,” meaning it would not have been a feature of the building during the time it was built.

A VCC spokesman added that the proposed gallery failed all four criteria of the commission’s guidelines that would allow the addition.

The building’s second level feature is an entresol, or an intermediate mezzanine structure designed to extend the height of the first floor and which gives the building a unique architectural look that’s not typically found outside the French Quarter, advocates say.

VCPORA’s Erin Holmes said only 18 such features exist within the French Quarter, adding that no plans were submitted specifying how people could access the gallery.

Holmes noted that the property owners are also appealing a deferral by the VCC to add two stories to a portion of the building that’s rated brown, a category that holds the least historical value. The facade of the building is rated green, which indicates local historical significance, according to VCC guidelines.

James Rolf, identified as a VCPORA member and preservation consultant, said the addition is “mocking our own culture.”

“New Orleans is often the example throughout the country of how to properly restore a historic building,” Rolf said at the meeting. “We’re creating more of a film set than the authentic culture that we are.”

A woman speaking on behalf of the property told councilmembers that the gallery would improve the property, saying it’s the “least attractive” building on Bourbon Street.

In addition, architect Ralph Long said the gallery would would serve as a buffer to protect pedestrians from sun and rain, compliment the intersection and improve the appearance of the building.

King agreed, adding that every adjacent building also features a second floor gallery, which would create a positive economic impact for Bourbon Street — which he noted is an important source of tax revenue for the city.

Cell phone, wallet taken in suspected Bourbon Street simple robbery

NOPD said it’s looking for this unidentified couple suspected in a Nov. 1 Bourbon Street simple robbery.
New Orleans Police are seeking the identities of an unknown male and female wanted in connection to a suspected simple robbery that occurred earlier this month on Bourbon Street.

Police logs show that the incident occurred near the intersection of Conti and Bourbon street at about 3 a.m. on Nov. 1.

The unidentified suspects stole the victim’s wallet then forcibly took his cellphone before fleeing the scene in a black sedan, according to the NOPD.

Police are searching for information on this vehicle in connection to a suspected simple robbery near the intersection of Bourbon and Conti streets on Nov. 1, according to the NOPD.

Anyone with information as to the identity of these suspects, the vehicle or any other information about this incident is asked to contact any Eighth District detective at 504-658-6080, according to the NOPD. Anonymous callers can contact Crimestoppers of Greater New Orleans at 504-822-1111, police said