On Wednesday, April 28, Mayor LaToya Cantrell joined other city officials and business leaders, to mark the recent reopening of two-way vehicle traffic on several blocks of Canal Street near the Hard Rock site.
“The reopening of Canal Street has been a long time coming. There has been a lot of hard, thoughtful, and careful work put into this by all our agencies and partners. We wanted to get this done right. We’re happy that one of the busiest and most important streets in the City has been reopened. Even as we faced all the challenges that have emerged since the collapse, including the COVID-19 pandemic and a historic hurricane season, we continued to push those responsible for the collapse to clean up their mess and return our streets to the people,” said Mayor Cantrell.
Two lanes of traffic on Canal Street are now open from Burgundy through North Rampart Street. The outside lane (closest to the collapse site) has been converted into a protected pedestrian pathway. City officials continue to work with the building’s owners to ensure the sidewalk and streetscape are restored to their pre-collapse condition.
Deputy CAO Ramsey Green has outlined some of the next steps to bring the area back to full operational use, including repairs to the Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans’ (SWBNO) sewer and water lines and the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority’s streetcar lines on Rampart and Canal streets. Full water and sewer line replacements are now underway, and the RTA is working to restore service to the Canal Streetcar line by late summer 2021 and the Rampart Streetcar line by the end of the 2021. Buses will continue to utilize Duncan Plaza as the main bus hub until further notice.
Additionally, repairs to the roof and historic elements damaged by the Hard Rock Hotel collapse are also underway at the Saenger Theater, which is expected to be complete in July.