NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — Responding to the City of New Orleans’ announcement that it will abandon its plan to move city hall to the Municipal Auditorium in Armstrong Park, the Save our Soul Coalition — a community group opposing relocation — spoke out on Wednesday.
According to the group, the announcement was a welcome change, but more needs to be done.
In spite of the announcement that Mayor Cantrell’s administration would no longer seek to move City Hall to the auditorium, the Save Our Soul Coalition remained steadfast in their views that a government building did not belong on the historic square in Treme.
According to the coalition, the big fight continues because the Request for Quotation (RFQ) bidding out the New City Hall at the Municipal Auditorium still exists on the city’s website with a deadline of January 2022.
“As long as that RFQ is out there, then the city is actually still moving forward with plans to redevelop the Municipal Auditorium into City Hall,” added Dow Edwards with the coalition.
The coalition did commend the city council for enacting measures that would make it tougher to put anything in Armstrong Park, stating that the history of this area deserves more.
“One of the things we feel about this is in order to go forward in the future, we need to build and reflect on our past,” said coalition member Glade Bilby. “This is the culture of this city, these are the historic roots of the city.”
Finally, the Mayor’s office contended that there was a sense of urgency regarding this matter because the FEMA funds tied to the auditorium were on a deadline.
“We have a sense of urgency as well, and that sense of urgency means that we need to be talking to the city about what the community wants,” said Edwards.