NEW ORLEANS -- Looks like you won't be able to stand in the middle of Royal Street anymore to listen to your favorite street performer.
NOPD says the five block pedestrian mall on Royal Street that's usually closed to vehicular traffic from 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday - Friday and 11 a.m. - 7 p.m. on weekends has been reopened to vehicles while a major construction project continues to rip apart Bourbon Street.
The street had to be opened for a couple of reasons, NOPD says: to relieve traffic congestion from Bourbon Street being closed and to allow emergency vehicles to travel safety through the French Quarter while construction on Bourbon Street is happening.
"The decision was made by the 8th District in the interest of public safety," said NOPD Communications Director Beau Tidwell.
NOPD says Royal Street will be closed to vehicular traffic from Bienville to Orleans during posted hours after the Bourbon Street project is finished.
The intersection of Bourbon and Conti streets has been closed since early July, and several other blocks are inaccessible while crews replace the old pavement, along with some of the water, sewerage and drainage lines. Entergy is also replacing gas lines and underground electrical equipment.
The construction is supposed to be finished by the end of the year.