Melpomene Projects

The Melpomene Projects, officially called the Gustavo Apartments, is located in Central City New Orleans and is one of the Housing Projects of New Orleans. The complex occupies ten city blocks, bounded roughly by South Robertson Street, Clio Street, Simon Bolivar Avenue and Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard (formerly Melpomene Avenue). There were four three-story buildings and two four-story buildings for families and a high-rise for the elderly. At a peak height of 12 stories, the Guste high-rise is the tallest public housing complex in the city.

Melpomene Street Housing Development
GusteHighriseFromMLKJan2010.JPG
Guste highrise apartment building, Melpomene Projects, seen from Martin Luther King Boulevard, New Orleans
General information
Location1301 Simon Bolivar, New Orleans, LA 70113
 United States
Coordinates29°56′41″N 90°04′57″W / 29.94472°N 90.08250°W / 29.94472; -90.08250Coordinates: 29°56′41″N 90°04′57″W / 29.94472°N 90.08250°W / 29.94472; -90.08250
StatusRebuilt
Construction
Constructed1963-64
Demolished2004-2011
Other information
Governing
body
Housing Authority of New Orleans

HistoryEdit

The Melpomene Project was constructed in 1964. The site was once made up of single and multi-family houses; by the late 1950s the city declared them slums which paved the way for the project. It is the youngest surviving housing project in New Orleans. The high-rise underwent major renovations in 2002. In the 1980s and 1990s the project was well known for drug area as it was once over-ran by dope dealers. Many of whom where as young as twelve sold drugs in the project pathways. In 2004, three of the six low-rise buildings were demolished after failing to meet the Housing Authority of New Orleans' economic viability guidelines. In 2006 it was one of few housing projects in the city that survived Hurricane Katrina with minimal wind damage and no flood damage. In 2012 officials approved a $30 million bond for the final phase of redevelopment. The last building was demolished in 2013.[1] Construction of phase III began in 2013 at a cost of $61 million, through the use of $26 million from HANO, $21.9 million from FEMA, and $13.1 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credits. Gibbs Construction and Colmex Construction completed the development of the new one, two, three and four bedroom units, which include Energy Star appliances, and are also pre-wired for cable and internet services. Community supportive services provided by the Guste Resident Management Corporation are available for residents living in the community. The new Guste Homes opened in 2018 with 638 homes located on the entire Guste site; 577 of which are public housing units.[2]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Adelson, Jeff. "Guste Homes redevelopment financing approved". The Times-Picayune | NOLA.com. Retrieved 2021-02-15.
  2. ^ Crockett, Jennifer (2018-04-12). "At grand opening of affordable housing development, councilmember calls for HANO leadership change". WDSU. Retrieved 2021-02-15.