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Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club Headquarters Will Get a Lift

Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club will get a $340,000 federal grant to elevate its headquarters, Mayor LaToya Cantrell and other City officials recently announced. Elevating the Broad Street building will make it more resilient in flood events.

“Zulu is an invaluable part of our Carnival culture, and their headquarters is a gem of the Treme community,” says Mayor Cantrell. “Zulu also has experienced a challenging year in 2020 considering the flooding that constantly threatens the stability of their historic headquarters. That’s why we’re excited to see this project become a reality.”

The historic structure, built in 1920, has experienced repeated flooding and has been designated a Severe Repetitive Loss (SRL) property by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). That designation made the property a good candidate for FEMA’s Flood Mitigation Assistance Program, which provides funding to reduce the flood risk to buildings insured by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

“The unprecedented hurricane season we experienced this year is an important reminder of the real risk many of New Orleans’ older buildings regularly face,” says Collin Arnold, Director, New Orleans Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness. “While we were luckily spared major flooding, that will not always be the case. That’s why it’s so important that we continue to invest in projects like this that reduce the risk of future damage while also protecting our city’s most valued institutions.”

In 2018, the New Orleans Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (NOHSEP) worked with the Zulu organization to develop a funding application to elevate the structure and was notified of the award earlier this fall.

The $340,000 award will fund 100 percent of the elevation project and will bring the building to one foot above the base flood elevation, consistent with the City’s modern building codes. This is the first-ever elevation grant secured by the City for a non-residential property and is expected to be completed by Spring 2022.

“Too often the Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club has experienced repeated damage of our historic property due to major street flooding,” says Elroy James, President, Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club. “Our partnership with the City of New Orleans will allow us to protect this important asset to our community for years to come.”

District D Councilman Jared Brossett says “the award is proof of the cultural significance and perseverance of the Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club and its bond with the city of New Orleans.”

Owners of residential or commercial properties interested in seeking elevation assistance can contact NOHSEP’s Hazard Mitigation Office by emailing hazardmitigation@nola.gov. To be eligible for elevation assistance, properties must be insured by the National Flood Insurance Program.

City Leaders, Vaucresson Celebrate Redevelopment Project 

Earlier this month, Vaucresson Sausage broke ground on its new redevelopment project at 1800 St. Bernard Ave. This project will return the property to commerce as a kitchen and restaurant and provide for two permanently affordable rental properties in the process. 

Vaucresson Sausage, is a third-generation small business born out of a market stall in the St. Bernard market in 1899, to return to its historic Seventh Ward roots. 

District D Councilman Jared Brossett says the Vaucresson redevelopment project is another sign of a continued revitalization along St. Bernard Avenue, which   is a part of District D. 

“As the Council member for District D, I am committed to helping our small businesses thrive,” said Council member Brossett. “The Vaucresson redevelopment is a unique opportunity to match small business equity with affordable housing. My staff and I have worked hard to make today’s groundbreaking possible. I’m proud to welcome Vaucresson sausage back home to its historical roots.”

Free Flu Shot Events Help Protect Residents, Prepare Officials for Mass Administration of COVID-19 Vaccine

The City of New Orleans continues to partner with local organizations along with various institutions and agencies to bring, drive-thru flu shot events to residents across New Orleans.

The most recent one was held Dec. 19, in conjunction with New Orleans East Hospital and the Mystic Krewe of Femme Fatale at Joe Brown Park. 

Similar to a mass flu shot event earlier this month held at First Grace United Methodist Church, the Joe Brown event also served as an opportunity for local public health officials to test plans for future large-scale administration of FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccines. 

“This is a great opportunity for us to not only offer flu shots to our residents, but also to test our vaccine administration capabilities,” says New Orleans Health Department Director Dr. Jennifer Avegno. “COVID vaccination begins this week for our first priority groups and is expected to be available to the general public in the Spring/Summer of 2021. At that time, it will be an all-hands-on-deck operation to vaccinate our community.” 

Individuals ages six months and older are eligible to receive a free flu shot. No identification or health insurance is required and there is no need to pre-register. Flu shots will be issued on a first come, first served basis until the 1,000 maximum number is reached.

Collin Arnold, director of New Orleans Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, says. “This is a great opportunity for us to not only offer flu shots to our residents, but also to test our capabilities.”

Both flu shot events have been held in partnership with the Louisiana Department of Health, New Orleans Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness along with other site specific partners.

For more information on how to volunteer to support COVID-19 vaccination efforts, click here. 

For more information on the COVID-19 vaccine administration in New Orleans, visit ready.nola.gov/vaccine.