When I was first approached to open a second Laurel Street Bakery, I met with LaToya Cantrell, the then president of the Broadmoor Improvement Association and now the Council District B Representative on the New Orleans City Council. LaToya floored me with all of the neighborhood’s accomplishments since Hurricane Katrina and the levee failures.
One of the city’s older neighborhoods and one that contains a great mix of people and backgrounds, Broadmoor rallied after being flooded by more than eight feet of water in August 2005. The neighborhood became organized and focused on rebuilding itself, forging numerous partnerships with organizations such as Harvard University and the Clinton Global Initiative and writing a redevelopment plan that it still follows.
Today, Broadmoor looks completely different and really stands by its motto: “Broadmoor Better Than Before!” Most of the Broadmoor homes are rebuilt and occupied; Wilson School underwent a $29 million renovation; the Rosa F. Keller Library and Community Center is one of the best libraries in the city; there are tons of free programs available to residents, and the Broadmoor Improvement Association stands as a model for New Orleans neighborhood organizations.
Resurrecting the Washington Ave and Broad Street Business Corridor plays an important part in the Broadmoor plan and it’s happening now! More than $8.7 million has been invested and thanks to local developer Green Coast Enterprises, people can shop, eat, buy a home, receive medical services, and even work on starting their own businesses. And it’s all in walking distance.
I’m really proud to be joining this incredible community and I look forward to many years of serving it and watching it grow. Broadmoor Better Than Before!