FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 5, 2009
CITY COMPLETES REVITALIZATION OF OAK STREET
New Roadway Features Pedestrian-Friendly Amenities to Help Support Local Oak Street Businesses
NEW ORLEANS, LA - The City of New Orleans Department of Public Works today announced the completion of construction on Oak Street from Carrollton Avenue to Dante Street, approximately six months after the construction began. The project was completed two months ahead of schedule. Oak Street now features new pedestrian-friendly amenities, utilities and asphalt roadway.
"Were excited to see the completion of improvements in an area where businesses will benefit from better streets and sidewalks, and hope that the new amenities assist in bringing more visitors to shop on Oak Street," said Mayor C. Ray Nagin. "This project demonstrates neighborhood revitalization as well as economic development in progress."
"With the completion of construction on this important New Orleans commercial corridor, we hope to continue this momentum and find funding to restore many of our other important commercial corridors," said Robert Mendoza, Director of Public Works. "We understand the stress placed on the businesses during the time this roadway remained closed, but we now believe the finished product will encourage more people to visit Oak Street. We want to thank the Oak Street Business Association for their patience and support during this project."
The new roadway features extended sidewalks at each intersection to allow more space for greater pedestrian use, to help calm traffic at the intersections and to make the roadway safer to cross. The extension reduces the distance needed to travel by pedestrians crossing the streets and prevents vehicles from parking too close to intersections, which improves visibility at the intersection and assures emergency vehicle access.
The City reused the existing cobblestone from the old rail tracks to create decorative patterns at each intersection. This enhancement not only improves the aesthetics of the roadway, but also acts as a traffic calming device at the intersections.
In addition, the project included replacement of the asphalt pavement roadway, driveways and concrete sidewalks, replacement of sewer lines, water lines and drain pipes, installation of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant ramps in sidewalks at associated intersections, and new sidewalk benches and bike racks.
In total, approximately 0.5 miles of Oak Street from Carrollton Avenue to Leake Avenue was reconstructed. The project's estimated construction value is approximately $5.4 million, which was funded by the City's 2004 General Obligation Bonds and the Sewerage & Water Board of New Orleans.
Fleming Construction Co. performed the construction work and Hartman Engineering Inc. provided the design services and construction management services for the project.