ouisiana- The city of New Orleans expects to spend $15 million to convert Esplanade Avenue and Gov. Nicholls Street wharves into the final major piece of a 3.2-mile-long Tricentennial Park consisting of a variety of riverfront projects. The city swapped the Public Belt Railroad to the Port of New Orleans in exchange for the two commercial wharves. The agreement between the Public Belt Railroad and the port, directs the port to work toward the creation of an economic development district that would include the riverfront from Spanish Plaza to Bywater, but exclude any port facility within that area, such as the cruise ship terminal at the downriver end of Bywater.
While the plan for now, calls for mostly open park space along the riverfront, the city is not ruling out the possibility for revenue generating facilities. A proposal is in place to create an economic development district that would cover the area, allowing the city to gain additional revenue from any attractions that may be built there.
Other parts of the overall riverfront redevelopment include a new $37 million ferry terminal at the foot of Canal Street, a $7.3 million pedestrian bridge to the terminal over the Public Belt Railroad tracks, a $400 million redevelopment of the World Trade Center into a hotel and condos and a $7.5 million refurbishment of Spanish Plaza. The series of projects will be completed over the next several years
Washington, D.C.- Smithsonian officials are planning for an additional 2.5 million visitors at the National Zoo over the next 10 years. To accommodate the increase in guests, plans are in the works to build a 6-story parking garage with 1,280 spaces for vehicles. Smithsonian’s National Zoo has just over 880 parking spaces on its Connecticut Avenue campus, and the $50 million project would increase the total number of spaces to just over 1,400.
The proposal combines four of the zoos five existing surface lots into one structure allowing for the space to be repurposed for animal habitats. The Smithsonian Zoo plans for the structure to be built through a public-private partnership (P3). A request for proposals is expected to go out next month with construction beginning in 2020.
California- Lake Tahoe Community College (LTCC) president Jeff DeFranco’s first State of the College Address focused on several projects taking place that could increase enrollment. One of the upcoming projects that could combat low community college enrollment is to create student housing on campus.
By 2022, the school intends to be a residential campus and solve the housing problem for South Lake Tahoe students. In the meantime, the school plans on providing interim housing support. Within the next year, the LTCC hopes to secure a private partner to start building their housing on campus.
Alabama- Athens State University is preserving its historic character while modernizing the campus with a new master plan. Around 50 projects on the master plan were presented to the school’s board of trustees as part of a capital campaign.
Some of the projects include Founders Hall miscellaneous renovations for $13.68 million, a future academics building for $8.75 million, library renovations for $3.3 million, McCain Hall renovations for $1.6 million, McCandless Hall renovations for $2.4 million, Sanders Hall renovations for $5.2 million and Waters Hall renovations for $4.1 million. Another project includes the renovation of the Carter Physical Education Building, built in 1964, for $7.5 million and $4 million to bring the campus up to code. The plan also calls for standardizing campus signs, revitalizing landscapes and the construction of a pedestrian and bicycle path. The university plans to raise money for all projects through its capital campaign and public campaign, which will launch in 2020.