Will New Orleans do the right thing with the Old Naval Support facility?

It’s always a scary proposition when the city of New Orleans takes over a piece of valuable property. What will happen to the property?  Will the city properly maintain it? And will the city get maximum value for the property? Those are all valid questions, especially when the property in question is the multi-million dollar old Naval Support Facility in the Bywater neighborhood.

The old Naval Support facility is a huge piece of property on Poland Avenue, but more important than the street location is its maritime location. The massive facility sits on the Mississippi River at the Industrial Canal, making it one of the more valuable pieces of property in the city.  The three massive 6-story buildings have more office space than Place St. Charles or One Shell Square.  The facility takes up nearly 25 acres and sits just a few miles east of downtown.

The Feds have had the facility mothballed for the last couple of years but have had the A/C running and tight security measures in place to keep the building secure.

Will the city of New Orleans do the same or will the building fall into disrepair? Will the city act quickly to repurpose the building, ideally with a capable developer, or will it be neglected and ultimately lose value?

This was a multi-million dollar gift from the Feds. Let’s hope a real plan is in place and we take advantage of this asset. The right plan not only will help the old Naval Facility come back to life but can help transform the up-and-coming Bywater neighborhood, too.