NEW ORLEANS – A three-alarm fire broke out on Monday morning at an abandoned building on Curran BLVD and Read BLVD causing some residents to evacuate their homes. The building has been vacant since Hurricane Katrina. Fortunately, no one was hurt but local residents say abandoned buildings need to be addressed.
“They should tear the abandoned houses down and fix it up so the homeless people can have somewhere to go because they’re running into burnt buildings like this one behind us,” said New Orleans resident Joan Ford. “They find money to do everything else so I think they should do that.”
Another New Orleans East resident, Steven Daniels said his biggest fear is the hazards abandon buildings present to the community.
“That building was totally made up of wood and so it was only a matter of time before it would go up in flames,” Daniels said. “It would have been nice if they were to renovate it and then actually, you know, had affordable housing for some people.”
New Orleans City Councilwoman Cyndi Nguyen says there is a plan in place to renovate the blighted building.
“It’s at the Farmer Jamestown property,” Nguyen said. “That property does acquire new ownership. The new property owner is looking at building a senior assisted living.”
But Nguyen says, it’s the property owners— not the city— that must be accountable.
“Come home and be responsible! It is not right, it is not fair for people that have already rebuilt and for city government to have to intervene because you have neglected and abandoned your property,” Nguyen said.